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Report: 5M Children In U.S. Have Parents Locked Up

Report Says Wisconsin Had Nearly 100K Children With Incarcerated Parents

my_southborough (CC-BY-ND)

The Annie E. Casey Foundation is out with a report saying that 5 million children in the U.S. have a parent who has been in jail or prison.

The organization, which works to improve the well-being of children, is recommending policies to reduce the consequences of having a parent in jail or prison. Foundation officials said children with incarcerated parents can struggle emotionally and financially, especially when the family breadwinner is locked up.

Wenona Wolf, of the Wisconsin Council on Children and Families, said that in 2012, 88,000 children in the state had an incarcerated or recently released parent.

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“We are locking up a larger share of our African-American and Native American males which suggests that children of color really are being affected by this more so than maybe other populations,” she said.

Wolf said children with an incarcerated parent need more help from those around them.

“The report recommends that support groups are a great thing for maybe schools to implement or other community organizations just so these children have a support system and they have a stable environment while they’re going through the harsh reality of having a parent incarcerated,” she said.

The report also calls for more treatment versus lockup for offenders.

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