Seven Ways to Fix the Criminal Justice System
How can we reduce the frightening levels of crime and violence that plague out society today? The usual answer from politicians and the media is that we have to be tougher on crime. If we had the guts to crack down like, say, those Singaporeans, then we'd straighten this country out.
But that's just a myth, and a dangerous one, because it is actually preventing us from solving the crime problem ...
- Learn to recognize the influence of socially sanctioned hatred
- Make drugs a public health problem instead of a criminal justice problem
- Separate violent and nonviolent offenders right from the start
- Regain compassion and respect for those who wrong us
- Allow for transformation, not merely rehabilitation
- Join and support the restorative justice movement
- Take the issue of crime and punishment personally
The Good Lives Model: A Strengths-Based Approach
Over the past decade, the Good Lives Model of Offender Rehabilitation (GLM) has been systematically developed by myself and colleagues and has been adopted by many different jurisdictions both locally and internationally.
Its ethical core is that of human rights and it starts from the assumption that while offenders have obligations to respect other peoples’ entitlements to well being and freedom related goods they are also entitled to the same considerations.
This is particularly so when it comes to the implementation of punishment and reintegration initiatives.
Two fundamental intervention aims follow from this ethical starting point, the enhancement of offenders’ well-being and reduction of their risk of further offending.
According to the GLM, these goals are inextricably linked and the best way to create a safer society is to assist offenders to adopt more fulfilling and socially integrated lifestyles.