Jail Management Issues

Jail Management Issues

Management Issue Overview

Because jails are dangerous and high stress environments the need for discipline and an ability to follow orders is imperative to the success of management. A command style of leadership is necessary for jail/prison leadership. This is a large difference between the jail and other workplaces which may have many different leadership styles. Another large challenge jails face are human resources development and overcrowding issues. Finding jail/prison workers and keeping these workers is a difficult task due to the fact that jail/prison workers must endure the harsh dangerous environment of jail/prisons (Hart, 2008). There are high rates of burnout caused by lack of leadership and management knowledge of the jail/prison environment. These problems require ongoing training for staff.

Overcrowding of the jail/prison environment makes the human resource issues more pronounced due to lack of staff and understanding of how to manage large numbers of jail/prisoners. Overcrowding is the most serious issue due to the increased dangers it presents to workers and inmates. Currently, “U.S. jail/prisons overall are operating at 99% capacity, according to the International Centre for Jail/prison Studies…” (Caumont, 2013)

Jail/prison workplace is a challenge because these workplaces can be counterproductive. For instance, trying to rehabilitate criminals is in many ways contrary to the object of jail/prison. Placing large numbers of criminals together is counterintuitive to the concept of rehabilitation since these individuals are now subject to a criminal culture. This same issue applies to staff who are often forced into reactive states in which they must deal with problems rather than being proactive and addressing issues with strategies.


Caumont, A. (2013, August 2). Chart of the week: The problem of jail/prison overcrowding. Retrieved from Pew Research Center:

Hart, J. (2008). Jail Staff Today — Problems and Challenges. American Jails , 21 (6), 4–97.

Photo by Emiliano Bar on Unsplash


Triola Vincent. Thu, Feb 11, 2021. Jail Management Issues Retrieved from

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