The Coronavirus pandemic has resulted in the early release of many federal inmates across the United States. Home confinement has been touted as a way to protect both inmates and correctional officers from the virus. Here are some reasons why federal inmates can serve their sentence in home confinement:
Availing CARES Act
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The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act was signed into law on March 27th, 2020. This act provides $200 million in funding for the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) to use at their discretion to help prevent, prepare for, and respond to COVID-19.
The CARES Act is just one of the many reasons why federal inmates can now serve their sentence in home confinement. With this act in place, inmates have access to resources that can help them stay healthy and safe during their time in prison. In addition, the BOP has also implemented other measures to protect inmates from COVID-19, such as providing additional cleaning supplies and increasing the frequency of disinfecting common areas. One of the provisions in the home confinement CARES Act is the expansion of home confinement for federal prisoners. This provision allows federal inmates who are considered low-risk and have preexisting medical conditions to be eligible for home confinement.
Availing this provision will help reduce prison crowding and help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in prisons. It will also allow federal inmates to be with their families and loved ones, which can help reduce stress and anxiety levels.
If inmates have a low risk of reoffending
This is one of the main criteria that the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) looks at when deciding whether to place an inmate in home confinement. In order for an inmate to be eligible for home confinement, they must first be assessed as having a low risk of reoffending. This assessment is based on a number of factors, including the nature of the offense, the inmate’s criminal history, and their current behavior while incarcerated. Talk to your criminal defense attorney to check if you are qualified for home confinement. Inmates who are at a low risk of reoffending are good candidates for home confinement. Nonviolent offenders, first-time offenders, and those with medical conditions are typically considered low-risk.
If inmates have served a significant portion of their sentence
Another factor that is considered by the BOP when making decisions about home confinement is how much time an inmate has already served. Generally speaking, inmates who have served a significant portion of their sentence are more likely to be placed in home confinement than those who have not. This is because it is believed that inmates who have served a significant portion of their sentence are less likely to re-offend than those who have not.
If inmates have demonstrated good behavior while incarcerated
Inmates who have demonstrated good behavior while incarcerated are also more likely to be placed in home confinement. Good behavior can include following the rules, participating in programs, and maintaining a positive attitude. Inmates who demonstrate good behavior are typically seen as being less a risk to re-offend than those who do not.
To allow inmates to maintain contact with their families
Serving time in home confinement allows these individuals to maintain contact with their families and continue working or attending school. Maintaining contact with family is important for inmates’ mental health and well-being. It can also help them stay out of trouble while they are incarcerated.
Allowing inmates to serve their sentence in home confinement allows them to maintain contact with their families, which is crucial for their mental health and wellbeing. Additionally, it provides an opportunity for offenders to redeem themselves and rebuild bridges with their loved ones. Lastly, permitting federal inmates to serve time at home helps reduce prison overcrowding.
Home confinement also costs less than incarceration
The average cost of housing an inmate in a federal prison is $33,000 per year. In contrast, the cost of monitoring an inmate in home confinement is approximately $15 per day. Comparing the yearly government spending, home confinement costs the government an average of $14,000 per year.
There are several other advantages of home confinement over imprisonment or incarceration, including:
- Inmates can receive treatment for mental health and substance abuse disorders while in home confinement. This is not possible in prison, where access to these services is limited.
- Home confinement allows inmates to keep their job or attend school, which helps them support their families and prepare for life after release.
- Inmates in home confinement are less likely to reoffend than those who serve their sentence in prison.
If you are a federal inmate, you may be able to serve your sentence in home confinement. Talk to your attorney about whether this is an option for you.
To help reduce prison overcrowding
Prison overcrowding is a global issue affecting both developing and developed countries. United States is no exception. A recent statistical data from the Federal Bureau of Prisons shows that most US prisons are filled at an average of 94-104% capacity. Overcrowded prisons present various problems such as increased violence, higher infection rates, and lack of proper health care among others. Home confinement is a viable solution that can benefit both the inmates and the government. Here are are other benefits of reducing prison overcrowding:
- Inmates with health conditions that make them vulnerable to coronavirus can be released into home confinement.
- Inmates who are nearing the end of their sentence and pose a low risk to public safety can be released on home confinement.
- It can be argued that home confinement is more humane than imprisonment, as it allows the inmate to maintain contact with family and friends and live in a more normal environment. Additionally, prisoners in home confinement are typically still required to complete all the same requirements as those incarcerated, such as attending drug counseling or meeting with a probation officer.
Things to remember about home confinement
Inmates in home confinement are still required to follow strict guidelines set by the court and their probation officer. They must wear an electronic monitoring device at all times and check in regularly with their probation officer.
Home confinement is not a “get out of jail free” card. Inmates who violate the terms of their home confinement can be sent back to prison to finish their sentence.
If you or someone you know is eligible for home confinement, contact a qualified attorney today to discuss your options. An experienced attorney can help you navigate the process and ensure that your rights are protected.