Robertson, Oliver, Christmann, Kris, Sharratt, Kathryn, Berman, Anne H., Manby, Martin, Ayre, Elizabeth, Foca, Liliana, Asiminei, Romeo, Philbrick, Kate and Gavriluta, Cristina (2016) Children of Prisoners: Their Situation and Role in Long-Term Crime Prevention. In: Women and Children as Victims and Offenders: Background, Prevention, Reintegration. Springer International Publishing, pp. 203-232. ISBN 978-3-319-28423-1

Studies suggest that maintaining family ties can help reduce the likelihood of reoffending, and that while parental imprisonment can increase a child’s likelihood to offend, positive responses to the situation can aid the children’s well-being, attitude and attainment. Drawing on findings from the recently completed EU-funded COPING Project on the mental health of children of prisoners, this chapter explores the factors that aid a child’s ability to cope with parental imprisonment and the actions that different stakeholders can take to support them. It identifies some of the mental health impacts at different stages of parental imprisonment, the roles played by non-imprisoned parents/carers and by schools, and suggests options for further clarifying the factors that help and hinder children of prisoners in the short and long term.

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