Broken Bonds

Understanding and Addressing the Needs of Children with Incarcerated Parents

By Urban Institute Justice Policy Center

February 11, 2008


Parents in prison are a unique population with unique challenges, as are the children dealing with the stigma, loss and guilt. This report seeks to develop a better understanding of the challenges parents, children and caregivers face through a review of empirical research on the topic.  It also offers a series of recommendations for how this population can be better served. 

Table of Contents

Key Takeaway

Support for children with an incarcerated parent

Strong, close, and supportive relationships provide some of the best forms of protection against the risks of having a parent in prison. “Support” can be as simple as acknowledging the unique nature of their loss in a manner that accepts rather than stigmatizes.

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations