Before tackling some points on how to survive in a women’s detention center, it’s important to first discuss the difference between prison and a detention center. Most people can’t tell the difference between the two. If you ask the bureau of jail management and penology, “detention center” is a broad term used to describe a place where you put individuals who are yet to be convicted of a crime but are currently charged with an offense. These are individuals who have their bails set but cannot post them since they are financially challenged.
In the United States, a detention center can be a local jail, or an internment or concentration camp. Detention centers are categorized as minimum security, medium security, and maximum security detention centers.
A maximum security detention center is basically the most violent offenders are placed. Perpetrators who will probably get a life sentence at a maximum security prison are put inside a maximum security detention center. Detention centers with medium security typically houses perpetrators who have a lesser criminal background than those who are in maximum security. The people detained here normally have sentences not exceeding a year; in other words, a mid-range sentence. Lastly, a minimum security detention center is where perpetrators with the shortest sentences are housed. This kind of detention center feels more like a work camp than an institution. Inmates here typically have the freedom to work within the detention center’s expanse without fear of forceful intervention from the security staff.
So what are the things to keep in mind on how to survive in a women’s detention center? First, you must be respectful towards others at all times. By others we mean inmates and security staff alike. Remember that you are still not convicted. Getting into a fight with a fellow inmate or security staff would definitely worsen your case. Make sure that you maintain a high level of respect at all times.
Second, follow the rules and regulations inside the detention center. Not abiding by these rules would most likely get you into trouble. When an officer tells you to do something, you go ahead and do it. Security staff who run a detention center aren’t usually that strict. However, they are not pushovers either. If they think you’re being defiant, they will take you down. All you activities inside the detention center goes into your record. If a judge sees that you have complete disregard of the rules and regulations, they’ll most likely give you a less desirable sentence.
Third, do not discuss the details of your case with anyone. It is okay to speak about it in a general sense. However, going into specifics might be detrimental to your safety. Certain inmates loath certain crimes, especially crimes that are sexual in nature. If you’re in a detention center because of a sexually-related crime, do not under any circumstance discuss your case with anyone if you don’t want to be subjected to abuse.
Avoid taking anything on credit from other inmates. This includes things such as toiletries, food, and other items that you don’t normally get inside a detention center. By taking something on credit, you’re putting yourself in a situation where you now owe somebody something. When you owe an inmate a favor, it could later be used as ammunition by other inmates to get favors back from you. Favors which you’re now obligated to fulfill, or else you’ll be subjected to physical abuse.
Avoid gambling with other inmates in the detention center at all cost. Gambling per se is not bad as long as you’re able to put up the bet yourself. The only time that gambling becomes a problem is when you place bets on credit. This falls in line with aforementioned point that we discussed regarding taking things on credit from inmates. Also, gambling is basically a no-win situation for you. If you win, you’ll likely make the wrong person mad. If you lose, you’ll probably put yourself in trouble in the event that you’re not able to pay what you owe back.
Always follow the detention officer’s orders however trivial or silly they may be. Going against orders wouldn’t do you any good. Believe us when we say that there will always be abusive detention officers. They’ll give you stupid orders just because they can and they want to toy with you. If you resist and become defiant, you’ll beat your ass to a pulp. You’re more than welcome to file a complaint with detention center officials. It is your basic civil right. However, most of these complaints are time consuming and also often ends up in the officer’s favor. It is not worth the trouble.
Since a detention center is not a long term holding facility, try to focus on the reason why you ended up in there in the first place. Always keep in contact with your lawyer and have him or her update you on your case. Also, don’t forget to contact loved ones in the outside world. Believe it or not, keeping in contact with them and knowing that you have a loving family who believes in you is an excellent way for you to keep your wits and survive the ordeal that you’re going through.
Detention centers are but a stepping stone to a much greater threat–prison. However, being in a detention center gives you a heads up on what to expect in the event that they put you in jail or prison. Learning how to survive in a detention center gives you the basic skills needed to survive jail or prison. Learn as much as you can while you’re in a detention center. Try to get a feel of how things work so that if or when they put you in prison, you won’t look like such an easy prey for the inmates there.
Detention centers for women usually aren’t as dangerous as detention centers for men. However, that doesn’t mean that you won’t encounter women inmates who are just as dangerous as men. So always be alert and keep your guard up.
These are basically the most important points to remember on how to survive in a women’s detention center. These points, coupled with common sense, would definitely help you get through being in a detention center.