Most people would not think two major institutions such as public health and criminal justice are two bodies that would coincide but also have an effect on each other. Although they have their differences, they have more in common than what we would gather by common knowledge and now more than ever need to be implemented in our criminal justice system as a solution and preventative strategy to not just helping prior criminals that have been through the system but also victims and juveniles.
The change that the criminal justice system needs to take toward a public health perspective is pertinent to the success of prior felons and victims. First, the concept I present of criminal justice as a public health issue is within the context of criminals, victims, and juveniles and their environment, and the effect of mandatory sentencing, rapid incarceration, and the provision of services. Administrators specifically in the criminal justice are highly aware that certain institutions and policies that have been created and implemented are responsible for providing interventions that directly impact neighboring communities.
Some of these reoccurring issues such as suicide, homicide, and many others have and still are considered a criminal justice problem, but somewhere down the line society has failed these victims (Rosenberg & Fenley, 1991). The idea of combining criminal justice is a fairly new idea and a challenge. A lot of the causes of these crimes are the direct and indirect results of life and the environment of violence. Surgeon General Koop back in 1986 was an American pediatric surgeon and a public health administrator.
Koop was known for his work in the prevention of tobacco use, aids, and many more issues that technically deal with the criminal justice system. Koop was able to see the underlying cause of the issues and not just see the surface level and limit it to one arena. With one man’s influence violence was now conceptualized as a public safety and health issue. Not long after Koop people began to follow, 1991 the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control was with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the American Medical Association had begun practices designed to address family violence. The inclusion of these intuitions was so great because now there are no longer any constricting boundaries from helping people in different communities. The idea that criminal justice can solve the crime and be the savior of all without the help of other organizations no longer existed.
Criminal Justice issues resonate far beyond the common arena of police, and the courtroom workgroup. The need for collaboration is pertinent for the communities that are forgotten, because of crime and neglect. Disorganized communities with a large minority population experience the effects of socioeconomic inequalities greatly and these risks are nested within something far greater than what we can imagine. There have been a few studies that have shown the effects of minority children who are raised in these disorganized communities. In the article Predictors of Resilience in Maltreated and Non maltreated Latino Children, many environmental risk factors have been identified that predict maladaptive functioning in children independent of race/ethnicity, including limited maternal education, unskilled occupational status of the head of the household, low SES, dependency on the state for financial support, parental unemployment, low number of parents living in the home, large family size, parental mental illness, and parental relationship instability (Brooks-Gunn, Duncan, & Aber, 1997; Cicchetti & Toth, 1998.
This is a very dangerous thing because, children are not being taught and or being exposed to positive influencers, so not only does this become a cycle, collective efficacy will never happen because no one in this community cares enough about it. Crime and public health in a disorganized community, unfortunately, work together. The differences in crime and public health are how each body looks at issues, what issues need more attention than the others, and available resources. Crime and delinquency in disorganized communities often coincide as well, according to Relations of Delinquency to direct and indirect violence….
Exposure to violence remains a pervasive public health problem for adolescents in the United States. This cross-sectional study examined relations between exposure to violence in three different contexts (home, school, community) and delinquent behavior, using data from 233 11th graders (predominantly economically disadvantaged Hispanic and African American students). Analyzing delinquency and criminal activity in the context of mental health will help administrators understand what policies to put in place and also prevent the risk of creating offenders and having children in the system all of their lives.