One major problem with the criminal justice system is located in corrections. According to a study cited on Stop Prisoner Rape, a human rights organization, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 5 men are sexually assaulted. Every day, in every correctional institution in Florida, a man, woman, or juvenile is the victim of rape. Most of these victims are non-violent offenders sentenced to prison time.
Many people in the United States are flippant about rape in prison. They believe that the “criminals” should be punished and if that means they have to be raped, so be it. The correctional institutions also turn a blind eye by not protecting even the most vulnerable inmates. Because prison rapists are rarely prosecuted and because most assaults are condoned by inaction of the correctional staff, there is no deterrent for these terrible acts.
When a criminal defendant is sentenced to serve prison time, a governmental entity becomes responsible for their well-being. In Florida, the buck stops with the Florida Department of Corrections. You should be able to go to prison without being raped.
Prison rape has a lasting effect on the victims of these crimes and society as a whole. Rape spreads AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. The State of Florida’s taxpayers pay for treatment for these diseases that are spread in their institutions. In addition, when these victims are released, they are understandably angry at the abuse they suffered while under the “watchful” eye of the government. The chances of these victims committing future crimes goes up, costing society even more.
If you or someone you know is a victim of prison rape in Florida, you can find help.