Tuesday, December 29, 2015
CRIMINAL RECORDS SENTENCE THE WHOLE FAMILY
Nearly half of U.S. children—between 33 million and 36.5 million—have at least one parent with a criminal record. Having a criminal record can affect the family and children not just while a parent is in prison but for years after.
• Income. Parents with criminal records have lower earning potential, as they often face major obstacles to securing employment and receiving public assistance.
• Savings and assets. Mounting criminal justice debts and unaffordable child support arrears severely limit families’ ability to save for the future and can trap them in a cycle of debt.
• Education. Parents with criminal records face barriers to education and training opportunities that would increase their chances of finding well-paying jobs and better equip them to support their families.
• Housing. Barriers to public as well as private housing for parents with criminal records can lead to housing instability and make family reunification difficult if not impossible.
• Family strength and stability. Financial and emotional stressors associated with parental criminal records often pose challenges in maintaining healthy relationships and family stability.
Source: Center for American Progress, 12/10/15, Criminal Consequences