Prisons were introduced in the 1700s as correctional facilities to punish and mould the behavior of lawbreakers. A prison administrator is an individual charged with the responsibility of maintaining order in a prison. Titles such as superintendent, governor, and warden are used in reference to prison administrators. The most important goals of prison administrators are maintaining control over the prison system, offering care, and managing custody of the inmates (Cornelius, 2010). The achievement of these goals, however, depends on factors that affect the administrators. These factors include the problem of overpopulation in the facilities, issues among inmates, and inadequate budget allocations for various prison programs.
Prison administrators strive to control the correctional facilities by co-ordinating the behavior and activities undertaken by prisoners. Among their major objectives, is offering care to the prisoners through the provision of security and correctional programs (Cornelius, 2010). The level of security, however, varies from one facility to another because it depends on the severity of offences of the convicts. A maximum prison facility, for example, hosts criminals convicted with crimes of the highest degree. Caring for prisoners also requires that they have basic needs such as food, and healthcare.
Overpopulation in prisons is one issue that affects the achievement of these institutions’ administrative goals; for example, a prison administrator has no control over the number of inmates sent to their facility or the length of the imprisonment. They, therefore, struggle to maintain order and offer care regardless of the number of the inmates housed by their facility (Martin Rosazza & National Institute of Corrections, 2004). Monitoring a large number of convicts may prove difficult, especially in facilities that do not have modern facilities.
Issues among inmates may influence a prison administrator’s objectives. Such issues include drug abuse and suicide cases. Drug abuse among prisoners is common in prisons: prisoners have discovered ways to smuggle drugs in their cells without the consent of the administrators. The authorities, therefore, cannot adequately correct the behaviors of such inmates (Martin Rosazza & National Institute of Corrections, 2004).
One of the duties of a prison administrator is to draw, allocate, and manage the facility’s budget. The government, in most cases, allocates small amounts of funds towards prisons. A prison administrator, thus, is responsible for ensuring that the funds sustain the budget. The administrators cannot sufficiently provide services such as healthcare to the prisoners due to inadequate budget shares (Cornelius, 2010).
The prison administration’s most significant goals point at ensuring that prisons are facilities where inmates receive proper attendance and care, to promote good behavior. The government and other relevant authorities, therefore, are responsible for ensuring that prison authorities receive the incentives they need to achieve their goals.
Cornelius, G. F. (2010). The correctional officer: A practical guide. Durham, N.C: Carolina Academic Press.
Martin, M. D., Rosazza, T. A., & National Institute of Corrections (U.S.). (2004). Resource guide for jail administrators. Washington, DC (320 First St., NW, Washington 20534: U.S. Dept. of Justice, National Institute of Corrections.