Pros and cons of conjugal visits | Is it legal?
There are many controversies about the pros and cons of conjugal visits. Some people think these visits are very beneficial for the prisoners. They play an excellent part in developing the personality of the criminal. They are valuable in turning them from the wrong direction to the right path in life. These visits encourage good qualities among criminals and reduce the crime ratio.
On the other hand, according to some people’s point of view, conjugal visits are the source of total luxuries given to inmates. Prison is the place of punishment, not the source of refreshment, recreation, pleasure, etc. These visits enhance the courage of criminals to commit crimes in the future. Because in prison they got all facilities like home.
To understand the pros and cons of conjugal visits, first of all, understand conjugal visits, the history of conjugal visits, and which states allow and prohibit them.
Definition of conjugal visits
Conjugal visits are the specific meeting of a legal spouse, partner, and immediate family members like children, sister, brother, grandchildren, grandmother, mother, and father. The purpose of meeting a partner with an inmate is sexual activity.
A misconception with conjugal visits
Conjugal visits are also called family visits. Some people are perplexed and have misconceptions about the term conjugal visit. They consider conjugal visit is only between inmate and spouse. The purpose of these visits is sexual relations between inmate and visitor. But it is not valid.
The term conjugal visit has no narrow range and meaning. It includes the meeting of a spouse, registered domestic partner, and family members like mother, father, brother, sister, son, daughter, grandson, grandparents, etc. The purpose of meeting a spouse with an inmate is not only for sexual purposes. Sometimes in California, it was observed that 49% of the visit of spouse and inmate is not based on sexual motive.
Pros of conjugal visits
There are many benefits of conjugal visits.
Enhance positive manners and family bonding
The administration makes some rules of the prison. The administration of the penitentiary sets criteria for conjugal visits. Before giving permission, the whole background of the inmate is checked. It should be good and without any misconduct during the period of prison. Only those prisoners can meet who are polite and good in behavior.
Conjugal visits are rewarded to prisoners due to their good manners. The reward of politeness in family visits evokes positive behavior among them. They want to become a better person during punishment for conjugal visits.
Conjugal visits are only allowed for the civilized and good-mannered prisoners. The prisoners do not care for good manners and misconduct with fellow inmates and warden. They do not get an opportunity to spend time with their family. When these ill-mannered prisoners saw the other prisoners who enjoyed the facility of a conjugal visit, they also wanted to change them. In short conjugal visits are helpful to enhance politeness and good behavior among inmates.
Reduce sexual violence
Sexual violence includes many sexual cases of abuses like rape, harassment, sexual assault, etc. Conjugal visits are helpful to reduce sexual violence from the prison atmosphere and as well as society.
The states that do not permit conjugal visits have a high sexual violence ratio. In these states, cases of sexual crimes increase day by day. On the other hand, the country that allows conjugal visits has a lower percentage of sexual crimes. Conjugal visits and family visits help reduce sex offenses from the prison and society.
Reduce the risk of sexually transmitted diseases
The most remarkable benefits of conjugal visits are protection from sexually transmitted diseases like HIV, chlamydia, genital herpes, genital warts, etc. HIV is the most infected and quickly transmitted due to free s*x.
Suppose inmates have sexual contact with more than one partner, it leads to harmful diseases like HIV. Aids is a dangerous disease. In this disease, the immune system of the patient becomes weak. Conjugal visits reduce the risk of vide-spread aids. The benefit is that prison administration safe from these harmful diseases, and it also saves money for the state.
Recidivism is the tendency of the criminal to commit a crime again and again. Conjugal visits reduce the ratio of recidivism. When the inmate meets with the family members, he wants to spend the time with family. The meeting with the family gives pleasure to the inmate. Therefore, he aims not to commit a crime again in life. He is determined to spend time with the family.
Cons of conjugal visits
Risk of lives
Conjugal visits are dangerous due to improper unsupervised rooms during visitation. Some states prohibit them due to some risk and danger.
In one state of the U.S, the inmate killed his girlfriend during an isolated period of visitation. Another instance is German prisoner assaulted and killed his ex-girlfriend during these visits. Due to these problems, some states suspend conjugal visits.
Risk of carrying illegal things
There is an excellent risk of illegal things. The visitors can bring illegal or forbidden stuff like drugs, narcotics, weapons, guns, and many other pointed instruments harmful to fellow inmates. We can not say that these illicit things are found in a cell in large quantities. These things are found in some prisons but a lesser amount.
Lack of privacy
It is actual prisons provide private rooms for conjugal visits to spend some time with their partner. But these rooms are not secure and personal compared to rooms and the home environment. Suddenly guard checking is started in any case of an emergency can destroy the inmates’ mood and the visitors ready for sexual intercourse.
Risk of increases cases of pregnant women
There is a significant issue during visitation; many women are conceiving babies. The tragedy is that these children have no backup, and women have to face all these hardships lonely. Even inside conjugal rooms, contraception is provided to couples to reduce the risk of pregnancy.
Danger of escapism
These visits provide an opportunity for couples to intrigue and make a plan of escape from the jail. During visitation, they are busy plotting and finding how to escape from prison.
To conclude, everything has positive and negative aspects. Conjugal visits also have pros and cons. The pros of conjugal visits are enhancing family bonding, developing good behavior, reducing sexual violence, recidivism, and risk of sexually transmitted diseases. The cons of conjugal visits are the risk of illegal things, escapism, lack of privacy, and an increasing ratio of pregnant women.