More than 1.7 million U.S. children are separated from an imprisoned parent. Millions more have parents in jail. The risk of behavioral problems, attachment insecurity, poverty, cognitive delays, and other negative outcomes for these children is elevated. How many are able to overcome these challenges? And what public policies give them the best chance of persevering? The Urban Institute Press has published a book about the problem: “Children of Incarcerated Parents: A Handbook for Researchers and Practitioners.”
Information on these children is not systematically collected by jails, corrections departments, schools, child welfare, or other systems. The Urban Institute Press says the book takes a fresh look across disciplines–including criminology, sociology, social work, family studies, education, nursing, psychiatry and psychology, and prevention science–to present a detailed view of exactly what we have learned about these kids. “In this volume, we have brought together key scholars from various disciplines who are experts regarding children, parents, caregivers, and systems associated with parental incarceration,” say coeditors Julie Poehlmann and J. Mark Eddy.