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Hospital Value-Based Purchasing Program Help Me With My History Homework

 

Medicare Programs

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Hospital Value-Based Purchasing Program

The Hospital Value-Based Purchasing Program is deemed to reward most acute care hospitals with quality payments to try and provide care for the inpatient hospital settings. The program is considered to adjust the payments within the hospital depending on the quality of care that tends to be delivered. This VBP Program is believed to be important since it helps in designing quality care within any given hospital setting. Such also helps in bettering the experiences among the patients in different ways. Firstly, it helps in the elimination of healthcare errors that would result in cases of patient harm. Secondly, it helps in the adoption of evidence-based care standards together with the protocols that will help obtain the best outcomes when it comes to Medicare patients. Finally, it is considered to be helpful in the recognition of hospitals that are believed to provide some high-quality care at the lowest possible cost.

There are several measures under which any given hospital is considered to be scored. Some of these measures include patient safety, patient experience, healthcare that tends to be associated with infections and mortality. Therefore the hospitals are known to earn scores, for instance, there could be two scores to be earned: one for improvements and another one for achievements. When it comes to payments, they are believed to be adjusted based on the performance score which could reflect the measures.

Hospital Readmission Reduction Program

HRRP is known to be a Medicare program that tries to encourage hospitals to improve in their communication and coordination care to engage caregivers and patients during the discharge plans. The program is deemed to be important as it improves the health of American citizens by linking hospital care with the payments made. It, therefore, aims at facilitating communication and ensuring improvement when it comes to coordination effort to engage the patients on issues such as post-discharge planning.

When it comes to issues of measures, there is the use of excess readmission ratios in assessing the performance of any given hospital. Such ERR is deemed to be important in measuring the relative performance as it is always known to be a ratio adopted in the prediction of expected readmissions rate (Blumenthal & Jena, 2013). The ERR for each condition may be calculated for the conditions and the different procedures in the program.  This program is also believed to adopt ways of adjusting their payments. In this, there is always calculation of the payment adjustment factors which is most cases corresponds to the percentage reduced in the hospital payments. Such payments adjustment factors can also include the weighted average that is associated with the performance of the hospital.

Physician Quality Reporting System (which was transitioned into MIPS)

The Merit-Based Incentive Payment System is deemed to deal with the incentives offering payments to Medicare. Such therefore it can be said t be a performance-based incentive designed to help in rewarding various groups and physicians who provide quality and cost-effective care. The program is also aimed at driving improvements within the healthcare field by lowering the overall cost associated with the health care service (Hammer, Vice, & Manchikanti, 2016). MIPS in most cases tries to streamline the Medicare payment programs and incentives into a single system making clinicians easily monitor their various performances across several measures. Such financial incentives that are considered to be provided by the physicians are meant to encourage improvements in the various levels of care.

For the MIPS to earn a higher score and have some positive adjustments, the healthcare providers need to adopt newer data collection practices and ensure there are commitments to the improvement in quality and health care costs.

 

 

Reference

Blumenthal, D., & Jena, A. B. (2013). Hospital value‐based purchasing. Journal of hospital medicine, 8(5), 271-277.

Desai, N. R., Ross, J. S., Kwon, J. Y., Herrin, J., Dharmarajan, K., Bernheim, S. M., … & Horwitz, L. I. (2016). Association between hospital penalty status under the hospital readmission reduction program and readmission rates for target and nontarget conditions. Jama, 316(24), 2647-2656.

Hammer, K. M., is Vice, H., & Manchikanti, L. (2016). Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) for interventional pain management practices: Challenges and opportunities. Pain Physician, 19(E15), E15-E32.

The Mental Wellbeing of Older Adults do my history homework: do my history homework

 

Changes to The Physical and Mental Wellbeing of Older Adults

 

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At the biological level, aging results from the impact of the accumulation of a wide variety of molecular and cellular damage over time. This leads to a gradual decrease in physical and mental capacity, a growing risk of disease, and ultimately, death. But these changes are neither linear nor consistent, and they are only loosely associated with a person’s age in years. While some 70-year-olds enjoy excellent health and functioning, other 70-year-olds are frail and require significant help from others (Friedman et al., 2017). Aging results in various changes in people both physically and psychologically. The above statement was confirmed to be accurate by an older person who I interviewed. Also, the statement gains support from scholars who aim at investigating age and its effect on people. This paper purposes of outlining the following changes that affect the physical and mental wellbeing of older adults.

Memory keeping ability reduces as one ages advances—your brain changes as you age that may have minor effects on your memory or thinking skills. Healthy older adults might forget familiar names or words or find it more difficult to multitask. Older adults can promote cognitive health by including physical activities in their daily routine, eat a healthy diet, stay mentally active and quit smoking (Kadariva et al., 2019).

According to Kadariva et al. (2019), The abilities of their eyes and ears deteriorates. With age, one might have difficulty focusing on objects that are close up. You might become more sensitive to glare and have trouble adapting to different levels of light. Aging also can affect your eye’s lens, causing clouded vision. Your hearing also might diminish. You might have difficulty hearing high frequencies or following a conversation in a crowded room. Older adults should schedule regular checkups and take precautions over their eyes and ears.

The primary source used in this study affirmed that older people’s teeth become weak and lose. Your gums might pull back from your teeth. Certain medications, such as those that treat allergies, asthma, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol, also can cause dry mouth (Lotvonen et al., 2018). As a result, your teeth and gums might become slightly more vulnerable to decay and infection. One should brush their teeth and floss them regularly and make regular checkups.

Their skin shrinks. With age, your skin thins and becomes less elastic and more fragile, and fatty tissue just below the skin decreases. You might notice that you bruise more easily. Decreased production of natural oils might make your skin drier. Wrinkles, age spots, and small growths called skin tags are more common. Older adults should bathe or shower in warm and use moisturizer.

They develop cardiovascular system problems. The most common change in the cardiovascular system is stiffening of the blood vessels and arteries, causing your heart to work harder to pump blood through them. The heart muscles change to adjust to the increased workload. Your heart rate at rest will stay about the same, but it won’t increase during activities as much as it used to (Friedman et al. 2017). These changes increase the risk of high blood pressure (hypertension) and other cardiovascular problems. Older adults should get enough sleep and manage stress by exercise or talk therapy.

Their bones, joints, and muscles become weak. With age, bones tend to shrink in size and density, weakening them and making them more susceptible to fracture. You might even become a bit shorter. Muscles generally lose strength, endurance, and flexibility — factors that can affect your coordination, stability, and balance. Older adults should consume many kales and salmon to get an adequate amount of calcium, and vitamin D from the sun.

The bladder and urinary tract become weak as a person gets old. Your bladder may become less elastic as you age, resulting in the need to urinate more often. The weakening of bladder muscles and pelvic floor muscles may make it difficult for you to empty your bladder or cause you to lose bladder control (urinary incontinence). Kadariva (2019) et al. argues that in men, an enlarged or inflamed prostate also can cause difficulty emptying the bladder and incontinence. Other factors that contribute to incontinence include being overweight, nerve damage from diabetes, certain medications, and caffeine or alcohol consumption. Older adults should maintain a healthy weight.

In conclusion, many changes are witnessed as a person grows old. Physical deterioration and mental health are seen during a person’s senior phase of life. Despite this being true, it does not always happen to all human beings. It is possible to find an eighty years old man who is physically and mentally fit. A person’s lifestyle, genes, and diet usually are the main contributors to aging.

 

 

 

 

 

References

Friedman, E. M., Ruini, C., Foy, R., Jaros, L., Sampson, H., & Ryff, C. D. (2017). Lighten UP!

A community-based group intervention to promote psychological wellbeing in older

adults. Aging & mental health, 21(2), 199-205.

Kadariya, S., Gautam, R., & Aro, A. R. (2019). Physical activity, mental health, and wellbeing

among older adults in South and Southeast Asia: a scoping review. BioMed research

international, 2019.

Lotvonen, S., Kyngäs, H., Koistinen, P., Bloigu, R., & Elo, S. (2018). Mental wellbeing of older

people in Finland during the first year in senior housing and its association with physical

performance. International journal of environmental research and public health, 15(7),

1331.

 

Understanding about Existentialism history assignment writing help

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Existentialism

In the case of the three patients in a small hospital in a country that cannot perform surgery for all the three patients, I would choose patient 2 to get the surgery. By comparing patient 2 to patient 1, we see that patient 1 brought upon cancer upon himself by smoking continuously for many years. He may not have known that smoking would bring him cancer in his later years, but he made the decision to start smoking. He made the decision to smoke because he was not born as a smoker but developed the habit later in his life. This was a life decision that he made by himself without coercion by anyone. It was an authentic decision because it reflected the value of his life. Existentialists argue that he should bear the outcome of his decision despite the outcome being negative because he would have enjoyed all the positive outcomes (Staehler, 8). His decision to start smoking has caused cancer for which he is bearing alone. Patient 2 is different because he did not make a decision to smoke, unlike patient 1.

When comparing patient 2 and patient 3, we see that patient 3 was born with an unlucky hereditary heart condition. He did not make a decision that led to his condition. His essence of having a heart condition was not his choosing but a part of his existence, and since existence precedes essence, he should not suffer for his existence. He should only suffer for the decisions that he made that led to negative outcomes. However, further investigations show that the patient has suffered a cardiac arrest in the past because he put his heart under stress by training for the Olympics. The training he took part in exacerbated his heart condition and left his heart damaged than before. Additional investigations show that he knew about his condition, and instead of making decisions that reduced his chances of developing further complications, he chose to train for the Olympics. We cannot know how his heart condition would be today if he had not taken part in the Olympic exercises but if his current conditions are the result of his Olympic exercises. He made the decision to engage in the lifestyle that he did, and therefore his decision was authentic because it reflected his values.

Comparing patient 1 and patient 3 reveals two people who both deserve to get the surgery as they both brought their current condition upon themselves. However, deeper investigations show that patient 3 has a pre-existing heart condition that he did not make a decision to get but found himself with it. At this point, an existentialist would argue that person patient 3 deserves the heart more than patient 2 because his initial heart condition is not his cause. Further investigation shows that patient 3 knew about his pre-existing condition and went ahead to take part in the exercises. Patient 1 had no pre-existing condition and chose to smoke. Whether or not he knew that smoking would bring him cancer is not clear. Therefore, if there were only patient 1 and patient 3, I would choose patient 1 to get the surgery instead of patient 3.

If patient 2 is compared to the two patients, we see that the patient did not develop his cancer condition due to his decisions. His condition is hereditary and is therefore not his mistake. None of the decisions he made exacerbated his condition in any way, but his existence is threatening his essence. This is the opposite of the other two patients where their final conditions were caused by themselves. Among the three patients, I would choose patient 2 as the most deserving of the three patients. Patient 3 would be the least deserving of the surgery of them all despite having the hereditary heart condition.

The cases provided show three people who made decisions to create their essence out of their existence (Sartre, 12). The three people had varying levels of information that would affect the decisions that they made. Patient 3 had the most amount of information that he would have used to influence his life decisions. Patient 2, on the other hand, had the least amount of information. Existentialists argue that people are free agents and possess the freedom to make decisions that affect their lives as they will. All the patients made decisions observing the doctrine of authenticity. Patient 3 made the decision to take part in Olympic exercises despite the heart problem. The best decision to lengthen his existence would have been to not participate in the exercises.  The decision he made affected his essence and defined him as an Olympian. The decisions that patient 1 made also affected his existence but defined his essence as a smoker. Patient 2 did not make any decisions that affected his existence, and his essence remains undefined. He has not been authentic and therefore has no essence.

 

 

Works Cited

Sartre, Jean-Paul. Existentialism Is a Humanism. Yale University Press, 1946.

Staehler, Tanja. Existentialism. Routledge, 2013.

THE COMPONENTS OF RESEARCH global history essay help: global history essay help

The kind of research methodology that is being employed by this paper is comparative and qualitative. That is by the selection of top 5 companies within the top 100 companies that have been listed in forture magazine and comparing their CSR on a platform that does have the same kind of available modal affordance to them thus being able to uncover the language patterns of which are consistent with both of the companies hence being able to find out they do achieve a positive image the meaning-making and communicative practices of which have been conventionalized. The focus shall be on how the identities have been articulated through the means of multi-modal of which it does attract varied attention with the research that is multi-modal as much of the shall be considered as literacy practices that are from the perspective of multi-modal which is seen to be concerned with identities production. Keep in mind that much attention shall be paid to the visual modes that are deemed to be symbolic in this; The analysis is based upon the systematic functional multi-modal discourse analysis of which draw upon the theory case based on the analytical systems of Kress and Van Leeuven. Their techniques are considered to have techniques that have been established in terms of analyzing the visual modes of videos and images as they do believe that one can organize the visual meaning from that practical meaning to more representative meaning. Hence making the narrative meaning to refer to those elements of a given image to be appearing as if they have been represented naturally and do not have any kind of alteration s the symbolic meaning has been represented by the signs. Modalities in place such as the gaze/image and the social/frame do provide the person viewing with a kind of interactive meanings of which are considered as the visual links to the meanings that are interpersonal of which can aid in the identification of how the various enterprises employ CSR in relation to building their positive images.

Minimum Federal Drug Sentencing Policies history assignment help in uk

 

Minimum Federal Drug Sentencing Policies and How They Disproportionately Harm Minorities

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Abstract

Minimum federal drug sentencing policies were put in place to curb the surging cases of drug-related criminal cases. The policies aimed at designing a criterion that would ensure that the issues are handled to promote equality. The guidelines designed mandatory minimum sentences that individuals would face when they are convicted for a drug-related crime. It has been well established that these policies that were initially designed to limit inequality have fuelled it. This study aims to determine the ways through which the minimum federal drug sentencing policies disproportionately harm minorities.

The study uses case studies from scholarly research articles that were written on the same topic. The evidence showed that the policies harm minorities in many ways. The laws took power away from judges and gave it to the prosecutors, who can freely charge defendants with drug-related convictions with a mandatory minimum sentence. Therefore, the laws have failed to uphold fairness and justice, and have led to operational practices that subvert the entire notion of equality.

Apart from causing disproportionate harm to the defendants, the policies also affect the families and the convicted individuals’ entire community. The mandatory minimum sentences lead people with convictions to struggle with the payment of fines, fees, and debt leading to diminished economic stability. They also break families and cause unemployment problems for convicted individuals. More so, convicted individuals fail to pay child support, which is essential for minors’ upkeep.

 

 

 

 

Introduction

The country’s general rule requires federal judges to impose minimum and maximum imprisonment for various convictions related to controlled substance and offenders and other drug-related offences. The minimum sentencing policies have been termed as harsh and unfair to the minorities because every sentence is made according to a particular sentencing criterion that is arbitrary. Judges determine severe penalties by determining the nature and amount of drugs involved, an individual’s criminal record, resulting in injuries or death, and involvement of firearms (Bjerk, 2017).

The minimum sentencing policies disproportionately harm the minority groups because of how they are applied during conviction. The sentencing criteria range from imprisonment for a year to prison for life. Individuals who are convicted for drug-related issue gets at least that sentence. Looking back at the time when the federal drug sentencing policies were formulated, the country was reporting many cases of drug-related criminal activities, and is, therefore, wanted to fight the surging cases. The policies’ goal was to promote uniformity, and thus, the law alone was set to determine the sentence someone receives (Bjerk, 2017).

Regrettably, this idea brought the opposite effect because the policies led to an unfair sentencing system. When the guidelines were put in place, some took power away from judges and gave it to the prosecution teams who can freely charge defendants with drug-related convictions with a mandatory minimum sentence (Bjerk, 2017). Individuals are therefore forced to face harsh sentencing decisions which they cannot escape. Mass incarceration has been driven by the imbalance that is caused by an unfair court decision on individuals from minority groups. Federal judges have also disliked the minimum drug sentencing policies because it leads to a harsh punishment of people who pose the least physical danger to the community when applied to nonviolent drug offenders. The minimum federal drug sentencing policies have disproportionately harmed poor minority communities, especially African-Americans.

Body

From the various convictions relating to drug offences, it has been ascertained that the minimum sentencing policies shift personal bias in trials. Before the guidelines were put in place, convictions were made by judges or juries, but nowadays, prosecutors have more control in the sentencing process (Tonry, 2019). They choose whether to charge offenders in drug cases or not. This issue has led the judges to dislike the minimum drug sentencing policies. When applied to nonviolent drug offenders, it leads to a harsh punishment of people who pose the least physical danger to the community.

The policies constrain judges and empower prosecution teams because they make the prosecutors’ choices more conclusive in any drug-related conviction (Doyle, 2018). The prosecutorial decisions lead to disparities because they mainly base their decisions on the mandatory minimum charges, disregarding the defendant’s situation. The prosecutors, therefore, use the policies as a shield to constraint judges.

Federal prosecutors possess extensive discretion, and during conviction, they choose what charges for using because the complex criminal code provides them with many choices. Because of this reason, over 90% of convictions result from guilty pleas. Furthermore, the same prosecutors have the power to control the terms that are offered to defendants (Tonry, 2019). When judges had power in convicting drug offenders, the prosecutors had potentially limited discretion to impose any sentence.

The power given to prosecutors has led to a severe flaw that leads to harsh sentencing of defendants from minority communities. The policies that were designed to limit sentencing disparities by judges have resulted in prosecutor related differences. Scholars have often referred to criminal justice discretion as hydraulic because any attempt to prevent an inevitable trend results merely shifts the trend to another location. (Hollingshed, 2019) stated that, the policies didn’t increase the prosecutor’s discretion but instead increased their power, which led them to start determining cases conclusively.

When the policies gave prosecutors greater power in influencing final sentences to drug-related offenders, they obtained greater leverage in plea-bargaining in courtrooms. They, therefore, talk to defendants in ways insinuating that, if they plead guilty, they will get lenient sentences and harsher ones if they refuse. It is the reason why most defendants chose to plead guilty to the charges that were made by the prosecution team (Hollingshed, 2019)

The idea of using threatening language by the prosecutors has created an environment of coercion. Most of the defendants who face the prosecution team in courts are from minority groupings, especially the black community. When they are threatened with longer sentences, if they fail to give information about drug use in their residence area, some of them choose to say anything. As much as the policies aid law enforcers to get the information required on chains linked to drug crime, information that reaches them is not always true. When they choose to act on the information, it may be misleading.

Therefore, the policies have led to sentencing disparities for defendants from minority groups such as African-American and Hispanic. The laws have failed to uphold fairness and justice, but have led to operational practices that subvert the entire notion of equality. As a result, they are seen as a new form of segregation where minority groups, such as African-Americans. There are harsh sentences for people who produce, have or sell strictly controlled drugs. More so, the drugs that African-Americans frequently use have harsher penalties during conviction than those of the majority. In recent federal cases that involve drugs, black offenders get sentences that are about 19% longer than those of white convicts (Hollingshed, 2019).

The policies have also resulted in agents in the criminal justice system to treat white defendants differently from how they treat the other minorities, such as the Black and Hispanic defendants. Therefore, the minimum sentencing guidelines exacerbate racial disparities. Various sentencing disparity studies carried out by different scholars show that black defendants who are convicted of drug-related charges receive longer sentences than their white majority counterparts.

The mandatory minimums relating to crack-cocaine and powder-cocaine have also been a point for disparities. Before changes were made, individuals convicted of possessing 50g of crack cocaine faced a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years. In contrast, those convicted of possessing 5000g of powder cocaine received a similar mandatory sentence (Bjerk, 2017). However, due to the various recommendations, the thresh amount for crack cocaine was increased from 50g to 280g. Bunching studies about the change showed issues on discretion and racial disparity in the criminal justice system.

Although the change seems to be race-neutral, the sentencing dichotomy shows discriminatory aspects that negatively affect minority groups, such as African-Americans. This disparities arise from the calculations of associated powder and crack cocaine, whereby, a racial imbalance has been prevalent. About 90% of the people arrested for possession of crack cocaine are African-Americans. Experts disagree with the one hundred-to-one ratio between crack and powder cocaine, but the policies’ effects are still in place (Tonry, 2019).

Apart from causing disproportionate harm to the defendants, the policies also affect the families of convicted individuals. The mandatory minimum sentences lead people with convictions to struggle with the payment of fines, fees, and debt leading to diminished economic stability. It is because, during sentencing, the situation that led to the arrest doesn’t matter. People still get convicted because of the mandatory minimum sentencing criteria. Walker and Mezuk (2018) stated that, forty-nine per cent of families lacked funds to pay for the costs associated with convictions. Also, poor African-American families that made less than $17000 annually, were unable to afford the required fees.

When low income earning families struggle and pay the fees and fines associated with a convicted family member, they are left in deep poverty. In about 40 American states, defendants face additional penalties on the incarceration cost related to the sentences. When restitution and attorney fees are included, a family pays about $13400 concerning a convicted person. Many families from minority groups, especially African-Americans, get as low as $15000 annually. Therefore, that amount is too high for these families, and if they manage to pay, they are left with nothing to meet the other family members’ basic needs (Walker & mezuk, 2018).

In addition to the costs, individuals are supposed to pay a certain amount of money when released from prison. In many states, parole and probation supervision costs are transferred to prisoners by charging a monthly fee. In other states, the convicts also pay for the cost of electronic monitoring devices that they wear while in prison. In some states, these devices’ price is high because they enter into contracts with private vendors for the services. Therefore, the prisoners pay for all the money paid to the vendors, including profits (Hollingshed, 2019).

The incarceration cycle is perpetuated by poverty, and the incarceration itself is the cause of more significant deprivation. Estimates show that nearly seventy per cent of drug-related crimes reported on African-Americans are attributable to poverty. Therefore, about eighty per cent of these individuals are low-income earners. The reforms on mandatory minimum sentences were made on the system without considering the impact that it would have on society (Walker & Mezuk, 2018). The policies have a disproportionate impact on low-income earners and minority groups such as African-Americans.

Among the incarcerated individuals from minority groups, parents of minors take the largest percentage. This issue has resulted in the rise of child support debt that the convicted individuals owe. Child support money is very vital for the upkeep of minors. However, the mandatory minimum sentence adds a burden to individuals that jeopardizes individuals’ financial stability from minority groups (Tonry, 2019). When people are sentenced, they lack income and employment opportunities that can enable them to pay for child support. After release, it is equally challenging for them to earn income from employment. Many employers would not want to employ them, no matter how peripheral or nominal their involvement was. The result of any conviction is a permanent prison record.

On average, individuals pay $430 a month as child support. Studies done on formerly incarcerated individuals show that they are unable to make consistent payments in child support. The individuals have to choose between paying for child support or meet their basic needs. Inability to pay for child support has damaged relationships with their families and children (Walker & Mezuk,2018). Some of these individuals are either re-incarcerated or have risked being re-incarcerated for failing to pay for child support.

Some families lose income when a member who earns them a living is convicted. This issue leads the other family members to struggle to meet basic needs and also pay for costs associated with convictions. Seventy per cent of families that have an incarcerated member failed to meet the family’s basic needs. Among the families, forty-eight per cent struggle to meet basic food needs for the family, and forty-five per cent were unable to meet the family’s housing need (Walker and Mezuk, 2018). All this was caused by the financial costs that the families incurred when a member was incarcerated.

It is identified that education, training, affordable housing, an opportunity for employment, and finance are vital in ensuring that families and communities live healthy and fulfilled lives. However, formerly incarcerated individuals face barriers in attaining any of these. Although the state is aware of families and communities’ needs, formerly incarcerated individuals report no support and hence, they are left to grapple without help as they try to overcome the barriers. More than 40000 local, state, and federal restrictions are imposed on people with a criminal conviction (Hollingshed, 2019).

The policies, therefore, damage family relationships when people are separated from their support systems. The convictions disrupt the continuity of families in minority groupings when some members are unjustly imprisoned. All these issues cause lifelong health implications for some members of the family. In some families where a member is incarcerated, the other members report health problems associated with, stigma, isolation, and trauma (Walker & Mezuk, 2018). This medical conditions negatively affect the family because they result in further problems to already existing ones.

These health conditions are reported at times when the families are trying to survive because of diminished finances. The families get tone between paying for their basic needs, conviction costs, or medical costs for the other family members. Also, the family members who may experience trauma are likely to experience particular symptoms in their daily life. Psychological interventions help in preventing some long-term effects of this condition, but some are life-long.

The incarcerations also lead to employment problems after release because many fail to get stable employment opportunities because of their criminal record. Even though employers cannot access information about the various convictions, they can carry out background checks using credit reports of the applicants. It is because criminal justice debt is reported to credit agencies (Tonry, 2019).  Black individuals who were formerly incarcerated were far more likely to fail to find jobs than their white counterparts.

Although formerly incarcerated individuals need to attain educational certificates to aid them to get jobs, there are barriers that these individuals face. They find it hard to join institutions that can help them improve their living standards. Hollingshed (2019) stated that, formerly incarcerated individual’s highest education levels are either getting a high school certificate or earning a GED. As much as many hope to study and get good jobs, prospects for attaining their desired educational needs are poor.

Conclusion

The incarceration rates on defendants, their families, and minority groups are critical concerns because of the impacts it has on the individuals. The minimum sentencing policies have been termed as harsh and unfair to the minorities because every conviction is punished according to a particular sentencing criterion that is arbitrary. These policies were developed because the countries general rule requires federal judges to impose minimum and maximum imprisonment for various convictions related to controlled substance offenders and other drug-related offences.

The minimum sentencing policies disproportionately harm the minority groups because of how they are applied during conviction. The policies’ goal was to promote uniformity, and therefore, the law alone was set to determine the sentence someone receives. However, this idea brought the opposite effect because the policies led to an unfair sentencing system. When the guidelines were put in place, they took power away from judges and gave it to the prosecution teams who can freely charge defendants with a mandatory minimum sentence. Therefore, the policies put constraints on judges and empowered prosecution teams because they make the prosecutors’ choices more conclusive in any drug-related conviction.

The policies that were designed to limit sentencing disparities by judges resulted in prosecutor related disparities. The laws have failed to uphold fairness and justice, and have led to operational practices that subvert the entire notion of equality. The policies have also resulted in agents in the criminal justice system to treat white defendants differently from how they treat the other minorities, such as the Black and Hispanic defendants. Therefore, the minimum sentencing guidelines exacerbate racial disparities.

Apart from causing disproportionate harm to the defendants, the policies also affect the families of convicted individuals. The mandatory minimum sentences lead people with convictions to struggle with the payment of fines, fees, and debt leading to diminished economic stability. When low income earning families struggle and pay the fees and penalties associated with a convicted family member, they are left in deep poverty.

Among the incarcerated individuals from minority groups, parents of minors take the largest percentage. This issue has resulted in the rise of child support debt that the convicted individuals owe. When people are sentenced, they lack income and employment opportunities that can enable them to pay for child support. After release, it is equally challenging for them to earn income from employment. Many employers would not want to employ them no matter how peripheral or nominal their involvement was.

Some families lose income when a member who earns them a living is convicted. This issue leads the other family members to struggle to meet basic needs and also pay for costs associated with convictions. The family members of such individuals find it hard to get an education, training, affordable housing, employment, and finance, which are vital in ensuring that families and communities live healthy and fulfilled lives.

Also, in many families where a member is incarcerated, the other members report health problems associated with, stigma, isolation, and trauma. This medical conditions negatively affect the family because they result in further issues to already existing ones. Therefore, the families trying to survive because of diminished finances get tone between paying for their basic needs, conviction costs for their loved one, or medical expenses for the other family members.

The incarcerations also lead to employment problems after individuals are released because many fail to get stable employment opportunities. Their criminal record causes this issue that their employers use to deny them opportunities. Criminal justice debt is reported to credit agencies, and the employer gets the information from these agencies. Also, Black individuals who were formerly incarcerated were far more likely to fail to find jobs than their white counterparts.

Lastly, although formerly incarcerated individuals need to attain educational certificates to aid them to get jobs, there are barriers that these individuals face. They find it hard to join institutions that can help them get the necessary training and improve their living standards. As much as many hope to study and get good jobs, prospects for attaining their desired educational needs are poor.

Bjerk, D. (2017). Mandatory minimums and the sentencing of federal drug crimes. The Journal of Legal Studies, 46(1), 93-128. https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/full/10.1086/690205

Doyle, C. (2018, January). Mandatory Minimum Sentencing of Federal Drug Offenses. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. https://www.americanvoiceforfreedom.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Mandatory-Minimum-Sentencing.pdf

Tonry, M. (2019). Predictions of dangerousness in sentencing: Déjà vu all over again. Crime and Justice, 48(1), 439-482. https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/701895

Hollingshed, S. D. (2019). The Drug War in America: How Much Damage Has It Done. https://digitalcommons.georgiasouthern.edu/honors-theses/409/

Walker, L. S., & Mezuk, B. (2018). Mandatory minimum sentencing policies and cocaine use in the US, 1985–2013. BMC international health and human rights, 18(1), 1-10. https://bmcinthealthhumrights.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12914-018-0182-2