Probation and Parole: Advantages and Disadvantages
Probation is one of the most common criminal sentencing processes in the United States. A probation sentence generally allows most defendant to remain free in society while under supervision of their Probation Officer.
Defendants are usually eligible to see the parole board once he or she has completed a percentage of their sentence in correctional confinement. When going to the parole board the defendant’s case is looked into to monitor their behavior and other special considerations. Once the defendant has been granted their release from correctional confinement the parole board determines whether placement in a residential facility, community release center or on electronic monitoring is appropriate for the defendant. The board also establishes special conditions in order to address an offender’s specific needs, ultimately reducing risk and improving success under supervision.
In both cases, the offenders have to report to an officer during the whole supervision program. Parolees have to report to parole officers, while individuals on probation reports to probation officers. Relevant sources show that 60 parolees became assigned to one parole officer, while probation officers had more than 100 probation victims to supervise (Pew Center on the States, 2009). Table 1.0 highlights the basic similarities that exist in the conditions governing offenders on parole and probation respectively. This decision arises through a hearing by a parole board, unlike in probation where the judge makes the final decision (Bradley, & Michael, 2001). Furthermore, probation accounts for part of the punishment made by a judge, while parole refers to supervision imposed after a term that already existed. According to relevant sources, parole allows the smooth transition of prison inmates into the society, while probation guides first offenders to limit the chances of committing other crimes.
Bradley, K., & Michael, O. (2001). The Role of Parole. Retrieved from the Community Resources for Justice. Web.
Figgis, H. (1998). Probation: An Overview. Retrieved from the NSW Parliamentary Library Research Service. Web.
Pew Center on the States. (2009). One In 31: The Long Reach of American Corrections. Retrieved from the Pew Charitable Trusts. Web.
Thigpen, M., Thomas, B., George, K., & Michael, G. (2003). Motivating Offenders to Change: A guide for Probation and Parole. Retrieved from the National Institute of Corrections. Web.