Labelling Theory Of Crime In Ireland

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I would like to present the following paper to the committee, which identifies the theoretical perspectives that are important, in order to understand crime in Ireland. This paper will look at drug crime and how this is linked to other crimes committed in Ireland. It is important to identify the theoretical perspective help explain how and why crime is committed. The labelling theory will be explained in this paper to try and understand crime in Ireland. The labelling theory looks specifically at how crime is defined and how criminals in particular are defined. When society gives somebody a label like deviant, the individual will then define themselves as deviant and will act in the way that is expected of them. This paper will also…show more content…
In 2013, 37% of offences, which resulted in time spent in prison, were thefts, burglaries and robberies and 31% were drug-related offences including possession (MacCarthaigh, 2012). In total that is 68% of the prison population linked to drugs. The prison service in Ireland is currently running at well over full capacity and according to a report by the Office of The Inspector of Prisons, 2013/2014, "Overcrowding is a continuing, if a diminishing, issue." ( Inspector of Prisons, 2014)
According to labelling theory, once something is considered deviant, the person committing that act is deviant and then it is an ongoing cycle that results in the person being locked away from the rest of society. These individuals become re-offenders who make up a vast majority of the prison population. According to a report by the Irish Prison Service " Males made up 92% of the total population studied and had a higher recidivism rate than females (63% as opposed to 57%)." (Irish Prison Service,
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By legalising drugs, you would be removing the label that surrounds drugs and drug related activities. However, a lot of the crimes that are linked to drugs would be reduced because it would eliminate this type crime in Ireland. The drug market would no longer be hidden underground and controlled by drug lords. Drug users would no longer need to generate illicit funds from burglaries or prostitution in order to sustain their drug habit. Many shootings that occur in Ireland are linked to ganglands which are involved in drugs. Inciardi and Pottiegar (1998) found that treatment was an effective measure in controlling the use of heroin and the crime associated with it. Treatment involved the close supervision of heroin use in clean, controlled environments (Inciardi & Pottieger, 1998). Murders and shootings would also be reduced as a result. A certain amount of shootings in Ireland is connected to drugs in some way. If someone owes a drug lord a substantial amount of money and doesn't pay it, they will be shot and injured or murdered. This can escalate with people getting shot in retaliation. Many people are fearful for their own safety when there is a known drug problem in a specific
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