Title

The Electronic “Scarlet Letter”: Criminal Backgrounding and a Perpetual Spoiled Identity

Document Type

Article

Language

eng

Format of Original

18 p.

Publication Date

2011

Publisher

Taylor & Francis

Source Publication

Journal of Offender Rehabilitation

Source ISSN

1050-9674

Original Item ID

doi: 10.1080/10509674.2011.560548

Abstract

Crimes are multifaceted events that are not adequately explained with basic descriptors, yet a considerable amount of significance is afforded to relatively few simplistic labels that make up the contemporary “scarlet letter.” Today's criminal records create a lifetime of stigmatization for a person. These public records employ a limited range of information. By acknowledging the deleterious effects of even one documented criminal event on an individual's self-concept and status in society, we cannot avoid being faced with a serious moral dilemma in light of society's prevalent reliance upon electronic criminal records. The electronic brand carried for life poses great challenges to offender rehabilitation and reintegration.

Comments

Journal of Offender Rehabilitation, Vol. 50, No. 3 (2011): 101-118. DOI.