The following narrative will be illustrated into three sections. The three sections will be classified as: Law Enforcement, Corrections, and Courts. Of these sections I will be discussing the politics, stressors and attitudes found within these elements of the criminal justice system. A recent political event that has created national conflict and debate, are the immigration laws that have been established in the state of Arizona. This will be the topic of all three sections in the narrative and how these laws have affected the law enforcement agencies, the court system and the correctional institutions.
Furthermore I will discuss possible solutions that could impact the political views and concerns of those who are in favor and oppose the newly enacted laws. Law Enforcement In the state of Arizona, Senate Bill 1070 is a bill that in essence, regulate that elements of the criminal justice system, assist in the enforcement of federal immigration laws. This new law would make the failure of carrying ones immigration documents a crime; additionally giving law enforcement officials a more broad power to detain anyone suspected of being in the country illegally.
Some fail to realize that this is not a new concept with immigration or any racist or bias towards Hispanic ethnicities. It is not called a Hispanic deportation law, it is immigration enforcement. Immigration Customs Enforcement or Border Patrol enforce the immigration laws and protect the borders of the United States. This means all persons that are not United States citizens, not any one specific ethnicity. This law provides added jurisdictional boundaries when in contact with a person suspected of being undocumented and requires that law enforcement officials act upon incidents involving undocumented immigrants and related activities.
There are those that believe the law will create an open invitation for harassment and discrimination by law enforcement agencies against Hispanics, regardless of their citizenship status. This creates several concerns with law enforcement agencies. One obviously is the stereotypical perception that law enforcement officials are being racist or discriminatory towards specific ethnicities. Secondly, law enforcement agencies are concerned with a negative impact this law may impose, such as lack of reporting.
By this, they fear that immigrants will be apprehensive about reporting incidents as a victim, or testifying to the witnessing of criminal activity; in fear of being questioned as to their immigration status. This sense of fear or anonymous incidents can create a tremendous amount of stress on individual officers and agencies as a whole, due to lack of evidence in criminal cases. Criminal activity can increase as a result of these now victimless victims. The new broader spectrum of enforcement can include exclusions or amendments as so many rules and regulations have.
This can be applied similar to rape shield laws, which do not permit any evidence relating to the past sexual behavior of the plaintiff. In relation to the new immigration laws, parties would be able to report or testify in activities relating to criminal activity without fear of repercussion due to their immigration status; providing them with a form of immunity. Corrections The above aforementioned political event will be the same focal point within the correctional community.
As with law enforcement agencies, the correction institutions will share some of the same affects of the politics, stressors, and attitudes related to the implementation of the new immigration enforcement laws. This new law relates that anyone arrested in Arizona cannot be released until police check with the federal government to determine whether that person is in the country legally. With this element of procedural disposition, a strenuous factor is then imposed upon the focus of corrections within the criminal justice system.
The purpose of the corrections element within the criminal justice system is to rehabilitate offenders through the application of programs and services by protecting society through incarceration and supervision. With the implementation of the requirement to properly identify ones immigration status, a greater strain will be inflicted upon the already overcrowded facilities of the corrections element. Correctional institutions, not only in Arizona, but throughout various cities in the United States, are overcrowded.
Arizona’s immigration law requires law enforcement agencies to detain these individuals in a custodial facility until their immigration status is verified. Most agencies can only manage a limited amount of detained personnel before they must be transferred to county facilities. These facilities are controlled by correctional personnel who will now be required to perform duties outside the normal functions and role of the correctional element within the criminal justice system. By this, additional strain is put on wardens who must now provide additional staff to monitor an increase of detainees.
Furthermore, segregating criminal offenders from immigration detainees will create another logistical strain on correctional department due to the lack of space within facilities, funding of staff, and providing services such as food and medical care to the immigration offenders. As it stands, law enforcement agencies are not required to transfer or release convicted undocumented immigrants to federal agencies, such as Immigration Customs Enforcement; therefore remaining in our correctional system.
A possible solution to this problem would be transferring detainees to federal facilities or have facilities created to detain these personnel until processed further. This could release a tremendous amount of logistical and economic strain on the correctional community of incidents related to immigration. Courts As we transition to the last element of the criminal justice system, I will now discuss issues which affect the court system as a result of the above aforementioned political event. The court system is part of the judicial branch of government.
The judicial branch is responsible for making laws and can carry some of the greatest strains of decision making. There is always a great amount of things to consider when deciding on the implementation of new regulations. As it pertains to this particular political event, the courts probably experienced a great deal of strain as a result of perception. In addition to the possible economic loss due to a decrease in tourism, many who oppose of this implemented regulation is that the law promotes discrimination of particular races, which is also against constitutional laws.
In conclusion, the criminal justice system and its components ¬¬¬ experience various stressors that are introduced in various forms. Some of these strains have personal influences and some are a result of their particular occupation. In law enforcement, the typical patrol officer experiences pressure from both occupation and home. While performing their duties, they have the stressor of occupational hazards, such as responding to violent incidents involving an active shooter. They are at times entering into a situation where they could be injured by the suspect.
They also can experience the psychological effects of exposure to critical incidents that involve death such as a homicide or violet vehicle accident. These stressors, in addition, can affect an officer’s family life. There is a stress or fear that one’s spouse may become a widow as a result of occupational hazards or psychologically unstable due to exposures of incidents. This stress can then be excreted onto family members. Many agencies that are exposed to physical and psychological hazards do have personnel that can intervene to assist in managing occupational stressors.
Correctional officers experience similar stressors as law enforcement personnel due to the constant exposure to already known criminal offenders. In the court element of the criminal justice system, they typically experience strains from a political stand point. The court system is a very sophisticated and technical element. It does not only decide that adjudication of an offender, it also establishes the laws that resulted in an offender’s apprehension. In addition, the courts resolve disputes against contradictions of law or constitutional violations.
Judicial personnel sense of security and sanity is that of signifying the constitutional belief that this country was founded upon.
References Barry, J. (2010). Arizona law causing immigrants to leave state. KPHO, Retrieved from http://www. kpho. com/news/24149906/detail. html Buduson, S. (2010). 1070 supporters call Judge Bolton ‘judicial activist’. KPHO, Retrieved from http://www. kpho. com/news/24520156/detail. html Dwyer, D. (2010). Showdown over Arizona immigration law reaches federal appeals court. ABC News, Retrieved from http://abcnews. o. com/Politics/arizona-immigration-law-governor-jan-brewer-justice-department/story? id=11996695 Holub, H. (2010). Law enforcement discretion and sb 1070. The Voice of Tuscon, Retrieved from http://tucsoncitizen. com/view-from-baja-arizona/2010/07/30/law-enforcement-discretion-and-sb-1070/ Press, Assoc. (2010). Study: boycott hit Arizona convention business hard . KTAR, Retrieved from http://www. ktar. com/category/local-news-articles/20101118/Study:-Boycott-hit-Arizona-convention-business-hard/ State Senate Bill 1070, 2010, State of