As the previous chapter has shown, the rehabilitation of offenders can be defined and understood in a number of different ways. At different points in the history of modern penal systems different models of rehabilitation have been current, and each of them has different implications for policy, for sentencing and for direct practice with offenders. Each model also carries with it, in explicit or implicit forms, a set of arguments about why it is worth doing. An activity which is complex, expensive, difficult and unsure of success needs arguments in its support when it competes for resources, or needs to establish its claims against other aims of sentencing such as deterrence or incapacitation. In short, the desirability of rehabilitation is not always taken for granted, and its advocates need from time to time to deploy defences or justification of what they propose. The focus of this chapter is on the different kinds of justifications that have been offered to support various models of rehabilitation. It also considers the kinds of evidence on which they have drawn, and the assumptions they make about the nature, characteristics and entitlements of people who commit offences.
KeywordsCriminal Justice Restorative Justice Prison Sentence Probation Officer Penal System
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