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Is it positive by allowing ex-prisoners to speak to teenagers to deter them from committing crimes.

lisalisa Posts: 739 ✭✭✭
It is true that ex-prisoners can become normal, productive members in society. I compelely agree that allowing reformed offenders to speak to young people is the best way to discourage them from breaking the law.

In my opinion, teenagers are more likely to take advice from someone who can speak from experience. Reformed offenders can speak to young people from the experiences about how they became involved in crime, the dangers of a criminial lifestyle, and what life in prision is really like. They can also dispel any ideas that the teenagers may have about criminals leading glamorous lives. The adolescents are often indifferent to the guidance given by older people, I can imagine most of them are extremely keen to hear the stories of an ex-offender. The vivid and perhaps shocking nature of these stories is more likely to have a powerful impat.

The alternatives to using reformed criminal to educate teenagers about crimes are much less effective. One option would be for police officers to visit schools and speak to young people. It would be helpful in terms of informing the teens about what happens to lawbreakers when they are caught, but young people are often reluctant to take advice from figures of authority. The second option would be for school teachers to speak to their students about crime, but I doubt that students would see their teachers as credible sources of information about this topic. Finally, educational films might be informative, but there would be no opportunaty for young people to interact and ask questions.

In conclusion, I fully support the view people who have turned their lives around after serving a prision sentence would help to deter teenagers from communitting crimes.

Comments

  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 711 ✭✭✭
    I doubt it'll work, @lisa , just because that an ex-prisoner isn't usually a good speaker. Why would he be? Preaching is what teenagers have enough. Instead, I'd suggest excursions to court sessions and prisons when youths can see everything with their own eyes. Now ex-convicts more often seduce teenagers to get involved in crime, that's due to a certain sort of romance. Criminals look miserable, not romantic in courts.
  • lisalisa Posts: 739 ✭✭✭
    @Practical_Severard In fact, I am not quite sure it works or not. Personally I agree that it is a good choice to allowing reformed offenders to educate teenagers from their experiences about crimes, teenagers are more likely to accept that because they are more keen on the realities than theories from the police officers. Once I took part in the court judgement when I was young, and the vivd and shocking consequences were still clearly in my memory although more than ten years passed .
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 711 ✭✭✭
    edited November 2017
    > @lisa said:
    > @Practical_Severard In fact, I am not quite sure it works or not. Personally I agree that it is a good choice to allowing reformed offenders to educate teenagers from their experiences about crimes, teenagers are more likely to accept that because they are more keen on the realities than theories from the police officers. Once I took part in the court judgement when I was young, and the vivd and shocking consequences were still clearly in my memory although more than ten years passed .

    I think in the regard of effect it's all like with medicines. Some of them work for some patients, some won't, but others do. Some have worked before but now they don't and the doctor switches to something else.

    So a speech by a police officer is ok if the students haven't become used to them. If they have, the teacher may invite a reformed criminal as you suggest, but the students may become used to such visitors as well...
  • lisalisa Posts: 739 ✭✭✭
    @Practical_Severard Students are always intrigued about new objects compared with the old ones.
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 711 ✭✭✭
    > @lisa said:
    > @Practical_Severard Students are always intrigued about new objects compared with the old ones.

    Surely they are, like all human beings.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,095 mod
    @lisa I think it would only work if the criminal was genuinely repentant and wanted to help others not make the mistakes he or she made. However it would be difficult to really measure this and unless sessions were very closely supervised, I could imagine that it could be ineffective.

    However I suppose seeing the inside of a jail might be a bit of a put-off for some young aspiring criminals.

    I know that there are very effective social workers who used to be street kids and drug abusers.
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