The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world, holding over 2.3 million Americans behind bars. Though these high rates are somewhat recent, with incarceration numbers tripling since 1980. But beyond the bars are the families of those incarcerated. What are the material, social and emotional tolls on the children and families of the 2.3 million incarcerated Americans?
“Life Beyond Bars: Children with an Incarcerated Parent,” prepared by intern Neil Damron and released in November 2014, examines the latest research findings concerning the effects of a parent’s incarceration on children. The fact sheet draws from a variety of sources, including an IRP webinar featuring UW–Madison IRP faculty affiliates Michael Massoglia (Sociology) and Julie Poehlmann-Tynan (Human Development and Family Studies), and Poehlmann-Tynan’s recent edited volume with co-editor Mark Eddy, Children of Incarcerated Parents: A Handbook for Researchers and Practitioners. Special thanks go to Professor Poehlmann-Tynan for feedback and review.