“Mr. Weier has served his sentence in prisons in Minnesota, Oklahoma, Arizona and now Hawaii. He last saw his daughter 11 years ago and has five grandchildren he has never met. “To them, I’m just a voice who talks to them on the phone for a while,” said Mr. Weier who expects to be released next year.” (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/31/us/31prisons.html.)
By transferring inmates various times throughout various facilities, American taxpayers are essentially not getting their money’s worth. Some of the frequently transferred prisoners are not getting the proper treatment, rehabilitation, or training needed to help better their life upon release. This vicious cycle can lead to repeat offenses and incarceration. “Eli Coates a 26-year-old inmate from Arizona is serving a 10 year sentence did time at six Arizona prisons and one in Oklahoma, and is now back in Arizona. Mr. Coates has said that his frequent moves had made it hard to complete educational programs that he had hoped would help him get a steady job upon release.” (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/31/us/31prisons.html)
Stories such as Mr. Coates’ illustrate some of the problems of overcrowding in the America criminal justice system. In order to improve on recidivism rates across America it is essential that criminals can receive the rehabilitation and training that they need in order to be viable and productive members of society. If criminals continue to be shipped from prison to prison because of overcrowding then it makes it almost impossible to receive the full training, rehabilitation, and stability that is required to reintegrate them into the fabrics of society. Without proper rehabilitation -including job training, work skills, and life management classes - there is much more likelihood that newly released prisoners will continue the cycle of re-offending and reconviction. Gaining employment is fundamentally important to a prisoner’s rehabilitation. If prisoners move into meaningful work upon their release there is a much less chance of them re-offending, so the community (i.e. taxpayers) benefit as a result.