Prison Didn't Scare Me - By Female Ex Offender

I was reluctant to write this but I would like to have my say. I am a female and I was released from prison 18 months ago. I was involved in a night club brawl and very much regretted it. I served half of a three year sentence. It was my first time in prison and although I won't be going back, I got through it and wouldn't put it down as a traumatic experience. I have to be honest and I have to say that it wasn't as bad as I dreaded it to be. At one point, I was sharing a cell with a woman whose son is always in and out of prison. She used to tell me that prison doesn't bother him one bit. I have sat and watched Sky News for most of the night tonight on the London riots, and those youths aren't bothered about what David Cameron has to say or what the Police Comissioner had to say. The word, 'prison' will not scare them one bit because the British system is too soft. My fellow prisoner's son used to write to his mum and tell her that he didn't actually want to be released from prison because he didn't want to live with his Dad again, therefore he intended to cause trouble in prison to get more time on his sentence from the Governor. The UK is broken. For some prisoners in HMP right now, there is nothing for them to come out to. Employment? Where is it? And when it is available, single mothers are finding themselves just a few pounds better off per week. I totally understand that working for a living gives you that independance and confidence. For lots of youths, the Government are not giving them any incentive to find employment. The UK has lost its grip and take it from me, prison isn't a good place to be in. But it certainly isn't a place of deterrant either. Given the chance, I would be long gone from the UK!