Prisons - do they actually rehabilitate and are they effective in preventing crime and reoffending? | Law

Prisons - do they actually rehabilitate and are they effective in preventing crime and reoffending?

Emeritus Professor David Brown spoke to 5AA Adelaide (29 August 2014) about SA judge Paul Muscat's statement that prison is an environment for punishment, not the effective rehabilitation of criminals.

Professor David Brown said SA Judge Muscat's statement that prisons aren't conducive to rehabilitation is broadly correct. 75% of prisoners have been there before, suggesting it does not work. Prisons lead to more crime, consolidating criminal careers and making offences more likely. Some programs in prisons are good, especially practical programs around anger management, education or drugs and alcohol. The Scandinavians have strong welfare states, good social programs, good support, attack the conditions which lead to crime, and when people are in prison they have good access to programs, and outside prison they have good access to community resources to overcome their problems. In the last few decades Victoria has led the way in Australia with a lower imprisonment rate. Professor Brown also commented that housing is crucial after coming out of prison.