Prisons must become places of hope
What is the purpose of prison? This is the primary question every prison should be asking itself. If the only purpose is punitive, it can be expected that prisoners will respond accordingly. Punitive environments breed violence, suicide and self-harm, and engagement in rehabilitation programmes may fail.
Prisons that wish to genuinely rehabilitate prisoners should be applauded. Rehabilitating prisoners will promote positivity, and should provide prisoners with the means to try and move on with their life such as housing, employment and improved thinking skills. However, no amount of wanting prisoners to rehabilitate will mean that prisoners will rehabilitate. Prisoners need to believe that there is a future and how they can get there.
Prison hope is a fundamental psychological energy that powers everything through a prisoner's journey in time. Prisons must become places of hope, so that prisoners can thrive and society can be assured that prisons are places where people who've made mistakes can be renewed, re-energised and change for the better.