Having a parent in prison has a major impact on a child’s mental health, social behavior, and educational prospects. The emotional trauma is exacerbated by the practical difficulties caused by the disruption of family life and the financial hardships that result from the loss of a parent’s income.
Erika Linksey, Program Director of ChIPs Mentoring and Circles of Support had the chance to sit down and hold a short interview with Beatrice Lozada of Prison Families Anonymous Long Island, New York. Beatrice shared with us the difficulties she faced throughout her childhood due to her father’s incarceration. She speaks about how she and her siblings maintained a relationship with their father through visits to the prison, letters and phone calls. Beatrice informs us that even after her father’s release from prison, keeping that relationship has been just as challenging.
Did You Know: Incarcerated parents face many challenges staying connected with their children, especially if the children are placed in foster care. It can be difficult to access services, set up visits and reunite after release. Parents with sentences longer than 15 months are at risk of permanently losing their rights to their children.