Correctional Leadership Essay.

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Effective correctional leadership must confront unique
obstacles and challenges. These are often both internal and external.
At times, various special interests and stakeholders are on opposite
sides of an issue obstacle, or a potential solution. Choose an account
of a problem or a set of problems in correctional leadership either
from one of the supplemental reading suggestions or a reading you
select on a current or evolving problem. you may also choose your own
book or a count of a leader or leadership challenge in a non
correctional area. it may be an outstanding leader in the military,
business, politics, or the social sciences. if you choose this
alternative, in addition to the following requirements, relate how the
principles and strategies would apply to the correctional field and/or
criminal justice.

 

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Effective correctional leadership must confront unique obstacles and challenges. These are often both internal and external. At times, various special interests and stakeholders are on opposite sides of an issue obstacle, or a potential solution. One of the greatest problems in the criminal justice system is the over increasing cost of incarceration. In America, over 2.2 million people are incarcerated. American prisons are increasingly getting overcrowded, and the average spending per a detainee has even superseded a pupil’s budget in a K-12 (Leong, 2010). Additionally, the diversity of offenders in the American correctional system has been increasing every day. The solution to this problem rests in leadership. These problems in the criminal justice system call for a change in skills and attributes among effective correctional leadership. This paper explores the case of the Singapore Prison Service (SPS) which took bold steps in changing correctional leadership when it was confronted by similar problems in the American correctional system.

 

Singapore Prison Service Case Study

The SPS was faced with two problems; the first one was overcrowded prisons that strained the infrastructure and resources, the second one was an acute shortage of staff because of poor recruitment and retention strategies. There were claims that the prison staff was overworked and poorly motivated. The police service was also confronted with poor organization and poor public perception. Although the SPS was charged with the role of rehabilitation, the efforts to execute this task was ad hoc, fragmented, and confused for the work of specialists like counselors. The prison officers chiefly played a custodial role. The offenders’ rehabilitation programs in regard to religious counseling, work, and education was not systematically assessed and monitored to ensure effectiveness (Leong, 2010).

 

In 1998, the SPS realized that they should change their top leadership. Chua Chin Kiat, who had been in leadership within the SPS for several years assumed the position of the director of prisons. He was a transformational leader who addressed issues appropriately. He knew he had a challenge with staff and number of inmates. However, he possessed a special knowledge that a mere increase in the headcount of workers would neither solve the staffing problems nor be sustainable. He also felt that his solitary efforts could not bring change; he needed a team. He had to campaign for collaboration with his top management. His vision was to change the prison service from assuming the role of putting offenders away from the society, to assuming a rehabilitation role. So he initiated a series of prison services abroad, mostly for prisons that practiced progressive rehabilitation programs. These visits imparted new perspectives of leadership upon the senior management of the police service (ibid).

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