Now I have your attention, I would like to say it is my belief, we as a society are casting judgment on people & even looking at those incarcerated through the wrong set on of eyes.
People are locked away for behaviours; But
I am a huge believer in finding the root cause of people's behaviours. The ‘Why’
I would be interested to see the statistics around every person who is incarcerated throughout Australia; and their relationship or links to mental illness & or trauma.
I would go as far as saying, for majority of people, addiction & behaviours are symptomatic of trauma & or mental illness. Many individuals, self medicate to hide the trauma & or illness.
Addictions are also now being widely talked about as a mental illness, and we see many who are incarcerated, are locked away inside on the back of crimes committed whilst heavily influenced by drugs or alcohol.
Knowing the research, addictions & mental illness & now being widely talked about as genetic illnesses (passed down from generation to generation); Are we seeing people locked up for symptoms of illnesses they’re born with?
I understand that people are incarcerated for particular behaviours, fair enough, these certain behaviours are not tolerated in society, I understand this; but what if individuals, when judged on these behaviours, were judged on a history of trauma; because in a lot of cases, the behaviours are directly linked as a symptom of trauma.
What if when they were incarcerated, they were actually rehabilitated?? Instead of just being locked up for a period of time, to have further trauma perpetrated?
What if we actually got to these individuals before the behaviours were part of their daily & normalised habits?
Wouldn’t we be in a better position if we healed the trauma as children, before developing self medicating behaviours as young adults?
See, with people, we see behaviours; but the behaviours are happening for a reason. When we strip back the behaviours, a lot of the time we find substance abuse; strip back the substance abuse, people self medicate & use as a band aid, to cover some type of hurt. Peel back the band aid, that’s when we find trauma and illness.
Wouldn't we be better served healing these traumas and illness, rather than locking these people away - which really, is another band aid.
I've known of individuals who have been locked away, incarcerated, placed in a cell for up to 23hrs a day - tell me how that is rehabilitating? That type of punishment does absolutely nothing positive for a mind that is,
1. Unwell 2. Trying to navigate its way through trauma & illness - trauma & illness that is in many, many cases developed in the womb; a very long time before it is played out in behaviours that get them incarcerated.
The way I see the prison system as is; it’s not working.
We see individuals locked up, do their time (where the problem or root cause lays dormant - ie band aid) - on release, many head back to the exact same environment, with the exact same habits, of alcohol & drug use, a self medicating tool that leads them to behaviours that point them back toward the incarceration system.
As is, there is very little rehabilitation of behaviours; & it is a case of ‘locking them away, & hoping that is good enough’; because there is no addressing the root cause of what leads those to their behaviours.
I believe, there needs to be a re vamp of the entire system; it is not working.
There are so many people being locked up for their behaviours, and no one talks about ‘why they are producing these behaviours’.
We need to treat people on their traumas & illness - rather than their behaviours, which is happening as a result of covering trauma & addiction (illness).
Heal the trauma & illness rather then locking people away and keeping it dormant for it to arise on their release...
We want to see people correcting or healing certain behaviours; especially when they come into contact with the youth justice or incarceration system; yet we are going about it the wrong way.
When we heal the trauma, we begin to make progress in healing the behaviour.
Heal the trauma, we heal the behaviour