IELTS Writing Task 2/ Essay Topics with sample answer.

IELTS Essay # 1190 - Certain prisoners should be made to do unpaid community work

IELTS Writing Task 2/ IELTS Essay:

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Write about the following topic:

Some people think certain prisoners should be made to do unpaid community work instead of being put behind bars.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.


Model Answer 1: [Agreement]

Some people argue that particular convicts should be engaged in unpaid community work instead of being incarcerated. In this essay, I will present my perspective in agreement with this opinion since I believe that community work can foster rehabilitation, reduce recidivism, and address the root causes of criminal behaviour in many cases.

One compelling reason to support the use of unpaid community work for certain prisoners is its potential for rehabilitation and skill development. Traditional imprisonment often fails to address the underlying issues that lead individuals to commit crimes. In contrast, community work can provide offenders with a sense of purpose and responsibility, helping them develop new skills and build positive relationships with others. For example, programmes that involve prisoners in environmental conservation projects or community outreach initiatives not only benefit society but also offer offenders opportunities for personal growth and positive change.

Additionally, utilizing unpaid community work as an alternative to imprisonment can help reduce recidivism rates. Studies have shown that ex-offenders who engage in meaningful community work are less likely to re-offend compared to those released without such opportunities. By actively contributing to society and receiving support from community members, these individuals are more likely to reintegrate successfully into their communities and lead productive lives. For instance, programmes that involve prisoners in mentorship or counselling roles for at-risk youth can have a significant positive impact on both the prisoners and the young people they support.

In conclusion, unpaid community work can be a valuable alternative to imprisonment for certain prisoners, offering the potential for rehabilitation, reduced recidivism, and positive social reintegration. By providing offenders with opportunities to give back to society and develop essential life skills, such initiatives can help address the root causes of criminal behaviour.


Model Answer 2: [Disagreement]

Whether certain prisoners should be made to do unpaid community work instead of being put behind bars has generated considerable discussion. While some argue that community service might serve as a more rehabilitative approach, I disagree with this notion. In my view, incarceration remains a crucial component of the criminal justice system, offering necessary deterrence and ensuring public safety.

One fundamental reason to support the use of imprisonment over unpaid community work is its capacity to act as a powerful deterrent against criminal behaviour. The prospect of losing one's freedom and being confined to a correctional facility can serve as a potent warning for potential offenders, discouraging them from engaging in illegal activities. By experiencing the consequences of their actions firsthand, both the offender and others in society are more likely to think twice before committing crimes. For instance, high-profile criminal cases that result in significant prison sentences often contribute to lowering crime rates in affected communities.

Furthermore, imprisonment is crucial for safeguarding society from dangerous individuals who pose a threat to public safety. Some offenders may be too volatile or unpredictable to be effectively managed through community work, and the risk of recidivism remains a concern. Incarceration ensures that such individuals are isolated from society, preventing them from committing further crimes and potentially causing harm to others. For example, violent offenders, habitual criminals, and those involved in organized crime require secure facilities to protect innocent members of the public.

In conclusion, while some advocate for unpaid community work as an alternative to imprisonment for certain prisoners, I firmly disagree with this approach. Incarceration acts as a powerful deterrent against criminal behaviour and serves to protect society from dangerous individuals.


Sample Answer 3: [Agreement]

Crimes, in many countries, have gone beyond the tolerable rate, and it is a common practice to incarcerate convicted people. A segment of society opines that not all crimes are equal and the repercussion of harsh sentences for all offences is uncivilised. They outline the need for unpaid community service as punishment for mild offenders and youngsters, and I also believe that certain offenders should be given non-custodial sentences.

The predominant reason for me to believe in voluntary community service like cleaning streets, planting trees, and working for charity instead of the prison sentence is that many offenders are not born criminals, and circumstances often push them to commit a transgression. When such unpremeditated convicts are expelled from society, they incline to re-offend in isolation as there is none to accept them. In a similar fashion, juvenile delinquents should be rehabilitated by indulging them in community services, and not put them behind bars with other serious criminals. A recent study reveals that many youngsters who had been in prison for a long time often end up becoming even bigger criminals.

Moreover, one of the main objectives of our justice system is to control the crime rate and let offenders come clean. So if we give mild offenders large prison sentences, they would never get the chance to transform themselves. The unpaid community services, unlike harsh prison sentences, let offenders repent for their crimes, get close to other people and understand the essence of good deeds. To illustrate, around 80% of people who had to take part in cleaning and taking care of elderly people as part of their first-time small violations of laws in the state of California said that it positively impacted their view on crimes and changed their mentality. The same can not be said for the people who are put behind bars.

To recapitulate, minor misconduct should be treated differently than serious offences and thus deserves different punishments like unpaid community work. The objective of the law is to maintain peace in society, not to punish people. Thus unpaid community service is a great option to let some convicted lament their crime, do something good for society, and transform into good citizens.

Sample Answer 4: [Disagreement]

Punishment for a crime is meant to discipline offenders while also isolating them from society by taking away their freedom and giving them a chance to habilitate during prison time. Some people opine that such punishment is brutal and should be more lenient, like awarding community work to minor offenders. I disagree with this view because jail time is given only after a proper investigation is made, and light punishments for crimes can not be effective in curbing crimes in many countries.

Our judicial system works systematically and considers the intent of committing a crime. Thus a drunk driver who crosses the speed limit and someone who does so to reach a hospital to treat an ill elderly are not treated equally. And light offenders are always given a chance to defend themselves. They are often just fined an amount of money rather than being behind bars. Since we already have a system to punish serious offenders and just reprimand light offenders, we do not need to award community work to certain criminals.

Moreover, community work, as an outcome of a crime, fails to rehabilitate a convict mainly because such works are too light to make the offender regret his or her actions. The jails are made to reform someone when that person is considered a threat to society. And if they are not isolated, properly counselled, and given the time to repent, they will probably commit even bigger crimes in the future. For instance, according to a recent study, almost 30% of juveniles who are just given community or voluntary work for their minor offences often end up committing bigger crimes within a year.

To conclude, our law and judicial system consider the intent and circumstances of a crime and award punishments accordingly. So we do not need community work for crimes because this approach lacks the main objective of rehabilitating criminals.


Model Answer 5: [Agreement]

There has been a growing trend in some societies to consider making certain prisoners undertake unpaid community work instead of being imprisoned. While this may seem like a radical idea, I believe that it can help both prisoners and the wider community. In this essay, I will argue that it should be implemented more widely.

Firstly, forcing some offenders to engage in unpaid community work can be an effective form of punishment that benefits society. Many prisoners have skills and abilities that could be put to good use in the community, such as gardening, cleaning, painting and manufacturing. By requiring them to perform these tasks, they can contribute to society while atoning for their crimes. In addition, it can be a form of restorative justice, where the offender has an opportunity to make amends for the harm caused to the community.

Secondly, this approach can also have a positive impact on the offenders themselves. Being behind bars for extended periods can be a dehumanizing experience that strips people of their dignity and sense of purpose. Community work, on the other hand, can help prisoners to feel more connected to the wider world and give them a sense of accomplishment. It can also provide them with valuable skills and work experience that can be useful when they are released back into society.

Finally, the financial benefits of this approach cannot be ignored. Keeping people in prison is a costly endeavour, and many societies simply cannot afford to continue incarcerating large numbers of people. By requiring prisoners to engage in community work, they can help offset some of the costs of their incarceration. In addition, it can be a way to create jobs and opportunities for those who might otherwise struggle to find work.

In conclusion, I strongly believe that requiring certain prisoners to engage in unpaid community work is a great way of helping both prisoners and society. It can be an effective form of punishment that provides prisoners with a sense of purpose and accomplishment, and create jobs and opportunities for those who need them.

Sample Answer 6: [Disagreement]

In recent years, there has been a growing belief that certain prisoners should be made to do unpaid community work as a form of punishment instead of being put behind bars. While this idea may seem appealing at first glance, I disagree with it for several reasons.

Firstly, it is important to remember that prison serves multiple purposes beyond simply punishing criminals. It also serves as a deterrent to potential offenders, protects the public from dangerous individuals, and provides an opportunity for rehabilitation. By replacing imprisonment with community service, we risk undermining all of these important functions. If criminals know that they will only be required to perform community service for their crimes, they may be less deterred from committing offences.

Secondly, unpaid community service can be viewed as an easy way out for certain types of offenders. For example, white-collar criminals who commit financial crimes could potentially view community service as a relatively light punishment compared to imprisonment. This could ultimately lead to a situation where some offenders are not held fully accountable for their actions.

Finally, it is worth considering the potential impact of unpaid community service on the community itself. While community service can be a positive force for change, it is important to remember that it is also often carried out by volunteers who are passionate about the causes they support. Requiring offenders to perform community service without any pay could potentially be seen as devaluing the work of these volunteers and could lead to resentment and frustration within the community.

In conclusion, while the idea of replacing imprisonment with unpaid community service in many cases may seem attractive, I believe it is ultimately an impractical solution to crime because it ruins the very reason for which we have a judicail and punishment system in the first place.

1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Rating 4.12 (41 Votes)

Aminul Santo
How has he written like this!
There is a grammatical mistake in the sentence "Thus unpaid community services is a great option to let ....".

The phrase "unpaid community services" is a plural noun. So the verb following the phrase should be 'are', and not 'is'.

It is a singular noun since it denotes a collective of services, not individual services.
Muhammad Rashad
Nowadays, some people contemplate that some inmates of a specific category should be asked to do social service instead of their jail term. I totally agree with this. However, it should be confined to a certain type of convicts and the whole process should be monitored very closely. In this essay, I will be defending my viewpoint.

First of all, there are a few violations of law, which happens unintentionally or due to the lack of knowledge about them. Although there are severe punishments for these, people committing these should not be penalized with imprisonment, rather, they should be given a chance to learn from their mistakes and be law-abiding citizens in the future. Citing an example, a year ago, a youth in a European country was convicted for littering the highway and asked to clean one segment of the highway for a week. This is an exemplary punishment system that many other countries around the world should follow.

It is a common myth that jails produce more trained criminals. Up to some extinct, it is true, as the company of jailbirds trailed under serious crimes becomes the mentors of newcomers. In order to put a stop to this kind of training, authorities should make the prison a place to learn and develop. Inmates should be equipped with new skills and a passion not to be convicted again. This can be done by assigning them the volunteer jobs like helping the old in old age homes, visiting the patients in hospitals and teaching the children.

By way of conclusion, I will reaffirm my insurmountable contend that prisoners, who are put behind the bars owing to petty matters, should be given some social work instead.

If I were this writer, no doubt I will be granted 9 band score for my writing skill. Astonishing...
Duc Tran Hong
Such a great essay of you has fully demonstrated the 9-pts-skill of the writer. Highly appreciate by Duc from Vietnam with respect.
Amusing *Put INTO bars* :)