The History of Boot Camps Essay

2328 Words Sep 28th, 1999 10 Pages
INTRODUCTION

In the military, boot camp represents an abrupt, often shocking transition to a new way of life. Discipline is strict and there is an emphasis on hard work, physical training, and unquestioning obedience to authority. The new private is told when to sleep, when to get up and when to eat. He marches with his platoon everywhere he goes such as to meals and to training. Orders must be obeyed instantly and personal liberty is almost nonexistent. By the end of boot camp the new private has become a different person. Such was the hope for boot camp, or shock incarceration, programs in American prisons: that young, nonviolent offenders could be diverted from a life outside the law using the same tactics successfully employed by
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(3) Showers. Basic training program inmates shall shower daily. (4) Clothing. Basic training program inmates will be issued the required clothing specified for the basic training program. Inmates shall not alter or mark any clothing items issued. No other items of clothing will be permitted. (America Online, 1994)

When the inmates first arrive they have an orientation which includes: (1) Inmate identification by photograph, name, and DC number; (2) Initial reception and introduction to the basic training program, will include an explanation of the shock incarceration program and the community residential facilities; (3) Inventory of inmate personal property; (4) Explanation of disciplinary procedures. (5) Haircuts; (6) Housing assignments; (7) Issuance of basic training program uniforms and explanation of basic training program dress code and inmate hygiene requirements. (America Online, 1994)

Programs also differ in whether activities such as work, community services, education, or counseling are incorporated in the schedule of activities. There is some consistency in the goals of the programs, among them to reduce prison crowding and to change offender's behavior and thus their future involvement in crime. Some jurisdictions stress the need for intensive supervision after release if the behavioral changes brought about by shock incarceration are to continue in the community. Some States impose additional

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