Title

The Multifunction Jail: Policy Makers' Views of the Goals of Local Incarceration

Abstract

As scholars of local corrections have noted, jails hold a myriad of inmates for widely diverse reasons. What remains unclear, however, is what purpose or purposes jails are expected to serve. Despite considerable research on the degree of support for various correctional goals, little is known about what goals people want local jails to pursue. Using a survey of local criminal justice leaders in Orange County, Florida, this study examines the preferences policy makers hold regarding the appropriate functions of jails. Our results suggest that these policy makers supported several utilitarian goals but were most supportive of rehabilitation and serving the needs of those with mental health and substance abuse problems. Lesser support was expressed for incapacitation, deterrence, retribution, and detention. The implications of these findings for criminal justice policy and for future research are discussed.

Department(s)

Criminology and Criminal Justice

Document Type

Article

DOI

https://doi.org/10.1177/0887403403014002001

Keywords

jails, correctional goals, policy makers

Publication Date

2003

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