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The link between drug use and crime is not a new one For more than twenty years both the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the National Institute of Justice have funded many studies to try to better understand the connection One such study was done in Baltimore on heroin users This study found high rates of criminality among users during periods of active drug use and much lower rates during periods of nonuse Ball et al 1983 pp119-142 A large number of people who abuse drugs come into contact with the criminal justice system when they are sent to jail or to other correctional facilities The criminal justice system is flooded with substance abusers The need for expanding drug abuse treatment for this group of people was recognized in the Crime Act of 1994 which for the first time provided substantial resources for federal and state jurisdictions In this paper I will argue that using therapeutic communities in prisons will reduce the recidivism rates among people who have been released from prison I am going to use the general theory of crime which is based on self-control to help rationalize using federal tax dollars to fund these therapeutic communities in prisons I feel that if we teach these prisoners some self-control and alternative lifestyles that we can keep them from reentering the prisons once they get out I am also going to describe some of todays programs that have proven to be very effective Gottfredson and Hirschi developed the general theory of crime It According to their theory the criminal act and the criminal offender are separate concepts The criminal act is perceived as opportunity illegal activities that people engage in when they perceive them to be advantageous Crimes are committed when they promise rewards with minimum threat of pain or punishment Crimes that provide easy short-term gratification are often committed The number of offenders may remain the same while crime rates fluctuate due
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