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According to Crest Advisory’s 2019 report “Children of prisoners: fixing a broken system”, an estimated 312,000 children experience parental imprisonment each year in England and Wales. Every day someone is being arrested, someone is going to court, and someone is going to prison. As individuals come in contact with the criminal justice system, sometimes, their family members and their children do too. In some cases, this can be positive and should be the standard, but for others, it’s negative, and that needs to change.
Despite parental imprisonment being recognised as an adverse childhood experience, it does not meet the threshold for children’s social care, nor does it trigger any other kind of support for the child. Arguably Families and children are directly and indirectly experiencing negative consequences for the actions of one, a form of second-hand punishment, a collective punishment. Parental imprisonment generally affects families socially; financially; emotionally; psychologically; and physically.
No child should be punished because their parents are in prison. The research and stories of lived experience show that there is a long-lasting and negative impact on many of the families of prisoners.
CPC exists to raise awareness about the research that has been conducted and continues to be conducted backing up lived experiences of families, whose stories we wish to share, unashamedly so. To advocate for conversations that will lead to a change in policy, either nationally or locally.
As a society, we need to ensure children impacted by parental imprisonment receive the support they should have, so let's make that happen.
The campaign will do this work until September 2023, in line with our current funding deadline.