The increase in our prison population has had a major impact on our families, communities, state and federal budgets. In 2000, 92% of federal prisoner released were non-violent offenses and one-third were imprisoned for sell drugs or for possession of illegal drugs. A common misperception is that all these prisoners are dangerous and imposes a threat to others in the community. United States should re-evaluate the great needs of families, children and the re-entry of prisoners in communities. I would like to share some concerns, viewpoints, future needs, and ways to apply what I have learned through the presentation.
Some concerning issues of prisoners and their families and children have been that they are not an important part of the social policy. They are not included in the strategic plans of social services agencies or corrections departments. Our correctional population is numbering over two million and steady growing. Other concerns are the increase in women prisoners, the imprisonment of African American males, high recidivism rates, high cost of maintaining children in foster care placements, welfare assistance of women and children, and the reentry of prisoners back in the communities.
Advocates for Social Justice
In advocating for social justice for families studies are using theoretical perspectives which focus on the positive roles and functions that families serve as opposed to the problems that they experience indicate that families are important to prisoners and to the achievement of major social goals, including the prevention of recidivism and delinquency. Hairston’s (1988; 1991a) review of research on prisoners’ family relationship shows two consistent findings; “male prisoners who maintain strong family ties during imprisonment have higher rates of post release success than those who do not and men who assume responsible husband and parenting roles upon release have higher rates of success that those who do not. I feel that if there have been many positive researches why not follow up them to improve the impact of being imprisoned.
Advocating for more parenting programs in prison and involve the incarcerated parents to be a more productive parent to help eliminate and prevent intergenerational crimes. Advocacy should built relationship with children parent and their children by helping child and parent understand their situations better and to mend some of the hurt, distance and humiliation that goes with being separated. About 40% of incarcerated mother in a national survey has relinquished responsibility for the physical care of their children to others. Realizing that not all incarcerated mothers nor fathers wants the connection or re-connection with their children and that’s understandable. But both still need that emotional and mental hurting. .
The Role of the Human Service Worker
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