Ageing in prison: Implications for inmates and corrections

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


The number of older prisoners in corrective facilities globally has increased dramatically over the past decade in what has been referred to as a “looming crisis” (The Osborne Association, 2018). Increases can be attributed to factors such as historical sexual abuse convictions and drug and fraud offences, but also ageing within prison because of long sentences. There is some variation among researchers as to how old age is defined in a prison context, but most adopt a definition of 50 years and older. For Indigenous prisoners in Australia, 45 years and older is used. Managing the ageing of the prison population has presented a number of challenges for correctional services worldwide. While different countries will experience different challenges related to different laws and the like, most are dealing with common concerns. The aim of this chapter is to discuss issues that fall within three broad areas ‒ the prison environment (both physical and social), the inmate and services ‒ and the implications of these factors for corrective services and inmates.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPrisons and community corrections
Subtitle of host publicationCritical issues and emerging controversies
EditorsPhilip Birch, Louise A Sicard
Place of PublicationAbingdon, Oxon
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781003010562
ISBN (Print)9780367818715
Publication statusPublished - 2021


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