Punitivity in Europe
Public Punitivity in the Czech Republic on Increase?
Jan Tomasek, from the Institute of Criminology and Social Prevention, made a contribution to the 2012 Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology, in the category “Crime and Society,” under the title “Public Punitivity in the Czech Republic on Increase?”. Here is the abstract: The Institute of Criminology and Social Prevention carried out a research on public attitudes towards crime and criminal policy with a representative sample of respondents in 2009. One of the questions used in the questionnaire was taken over from the International Crime Victims Survey (ICVS). The respondents were asked what sentence they considered most appropriate for a recidivist, 21 years old burglar. The results were very surprising with respect to previous studies in the Czech Republic using the same question (in the years 1992, 1996 and 2000) – the unexpected number of respondets (66 %) preferred imprisonment (in 2000 only 26 %!) while the support for community service decreased dramatically (from 57 % in 2000 to 12 % in the cited study). The same question was a part of the omnibus survey in 2011 to confirm or disprove the indicated trend. It was found out that the wish to send the offender of the hypotetical offence to the prison is really characteristic for the most of the Czech inhabitans at present. This conclusion invokes many questions about the roots of punitivity especially because neither the crime statistics nor the available victimological studies indicate the increase of crime in the Czech Republic in recent years.
- “Public Punitivity in the Czech Republic on Increase?”, by Jan Tomasek (Proceedings)