Children and Families of Incarcerated Parents
Children and Families of Incarcerated Parents Support aims to provide information and technical assistance to parents, families, teachers, school administrators, and the public, in order to improve services to those children with parents in prison. These children face many challenges. Regular contact between an incarcerated parent and his or her child can decrease the chances of the parent reoffending and decrease the chances of the child going to prison later in life.
RCW 28A.300.520 outlines OSPI's responsibilities to:
- Review current policies and assess the adequacy and availability of programs targeted at children who have a parent who is incarcerated in a Washington State department of corrections facility,
- Adopt policies that support the children of incarcerated parents and meet their needs with the goal of facilitating normal child development, including maintaining adequate academic progress, while reducing intergenerational incarceration,
- Gather information and data on the students who are the children of inmates incarcerated in Washington state department of corrections facilities; and
- Participate in the children of incarcerated parents advisory committee and report information obtained to the Children and Families of Incarcerated Parents Advisory Committee.
OSPI also collaborates with the Washington State Department of Corrections (Family Services) and the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services (Children and Families Dealing with Incarceration).
The Children and Families of Incarcerated Parents Advisory Committee's task is to gather data related to children of incarcerated parents, identify programs to serve their needs, and eliminate policy (and other) barriers that prevent a child from receiving support.