Community members contribute to the criminal justice system in different roles, i.e., witnesses, complainants, accused persons, or as remandees. However, they serve in these roles as individuals. As such, their actions or behaviors do not present the general societal picture (Jarrett, 2012). These roles can be split into two: the community could take the jury’s active role of assembling a tribunal that would then adjudicate over a given case, and proceed to give a unanimous or close to a unanimous decision; it could play a passive role in the justice system, and only come in to observe on how proceedings are being conducted- in this regard, the legitimacy of any court decision depends on how much trust and confidence the community has on it.
The quality of any existing rule of law in different countries is directly proportional to the trust and expectations of the community. The quality of the governance of any country is measured through the World Governance Indicators. Here, it is described as “the extent to which agents have confidence in and abide by the rules of society, and in particular the quality of contract enforcement, the police, and the courts, as well as the likelihood of crime and violence.”
In this regard, the confidence that the community has in the criminal justice system is not just enough to keep the rule of law; rather, it also paints a picture of the quality of the structures of governance, and how they are generally perceived (Jarrett, 2012). Members of the community shall be hesitant in making contractual agreements if they have fears over their fulfilments and enforceability in the event of a breach. If they have fears over the violation of their property rights, they would be highly reluctant to invest in property. As such, it can be aptly concluded that the rule of law is fundamental to having a community that is stable and free, but it needs the trust of the community for it to be effective enough.Describe the Benefits to Criminal Justice Professionals
Having the support of the community, in whatever capacity makes the work of criminal justice professionals easier. They can call on reliable witnesses who would avail themselves without causing much difficulty. However, hostile communities or those that are generally uncooperative make it difficult for the smooth functioning of the justice system. For instance, if there is so much public outcry over a particular case, the judges or jury could feel particularly intimidated in delivering an impartial judgment, ruling, or decision.
Further, communities help in the apprehension of wrong-doers through reporting either directly or anonymously on their whereabouts or their intentions. As such, the knowledge obtained through such reports come in handy when making the arrests (Jarrett, 2012). Also, communities that comprehend the functioning of criminal justice systems make it easy for professionals as they do not have to keep explaining or repeating particular concepts or facts.
The respect accorded to criminal justice professionals is particularly crucial in their operations. It makes it easier for them to acquire information while carrying out investigations, as they already have the trust and respect of the public. As such, when any cases are reported and opened for determination, the chances of them being concluded are highly likely. The conclusion or closure of such cases paints the justice system positively and is essential in cementing further trust from the public (Jarrett, 2012). As has been observed previously, the effective functioning of the rule of law, which is a fundamental principle in the criminal justice system, is highly dependent on the trust and confidence the public has in it.Describe the Types of Skills these Professionals Need to Do Their Jobs Effectively
Professionals in the criminal justice system ought to develop good written communication skills. Most of the documents crafted by such professionals often become legal documents. They must be clear and persuasive in their writing, and their writings are well-organized. They also need to have effective public speaking skills. During duty, such professionals often interact with the public regularly. The tone or manner of addressing their audience shall depend on different situations or circumstances. Other than influencing people’s opinions, good public speaking helps the audience trust that which one is communicating to them.
Further, professionals need to have good time management skills. Such professionals often have to visit several clients in a day or handle multiple cases at a time. Also, deadlines are a crucial factor in the profession and have to be met. In addition to that, they need to have active listening and learning skills. Such skills would come in handy when handling clients who are in stressful or difficult situations (Jarrett, 2012). It is prudent to communicate with them while being attentive and equally sensitive to the information or concerns that they are raising. Critical thinking and decision-making are also crucial skills that these professionals need to have. The decisions that are often made in the justice system end up having long-term implications. Therefore, they need to be well-thought and reasoned out. The professionals need to be socially aware, and conscious, and employ certain uses of deductive and inductive reasoning.
Jarret, M., (May, 2012). Community Outreach. United States Department of Justice Executive Office for United States Attorneys Washington, DC 20530.
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