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Beyond Scared Straight Programs assignment
Preventing Juvenile Delinquency
What I find interesting from the material by Kelly (2011) is the fact that despite its popularity, the beyond scared straight programs are not as effective in preventing juvenile delinquency and future involvement in crime as initially thought. According to the writer, there is no way kids can be dealt with by being sent to adult prisons since this only turns them into hardcore criminals. Also, the conditions in adult jails are not appropriate for juvenile offenders. There is no guarantee that youths will develop behavior change by staying in adult prisons and having a taste of what it is inside these cells. Even though these programs purport to teach kids values such as respect, the atmosphere inside these prisons is not conducive enough to inculcate such virtues, particularly owing to the offensive language used by the adult offenders and the prison staff.
Moreover, as Gilna (2016) argues, the scared straight programs which are aimed at deterring juveniles with antisocial behaviors from entering the criminal justice system are counterproductive since they have done more harm than good. Due to their confrontational approach, these programs only help instill fear in youths rather than equip them with relevant skills necessary to dissuade them out of bad behavior. Fear alone cannot be effective in deterring criminal behavior but instead, it could in some cases do more harm by creating hardcore criminals due to the resistance of the system. What the at-risk youths need are programs that target the risk factors for criminal, antisocial, and delinquent behavior and identify ways of ameliorating these risks so as to reduce the likelihood of youths engaging in bad behavior. According to Kelly (2011), hurling profanities in the faces of at-risk youth, teaching them respect, and threatening them with physical or sexual violence cannot bring about behavior change. ......GET A PLAGIARISM FREE COPY