Banner: Children of Incarcerated parents

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Youth Ideas for Change by Profession

Strategies For Law Enforcement Professionals

  • Get to know us: we are not statistics; we are youth who come from different backgrounds and family circumstances
  • See us for who and what we are
  • Know yourself: be aware of the assumptions and biases that you may have about us
  • Let us know we can trust you. Be reliable and predictable. Listen without judgment
  • Respect our right to confidentiality
  • Help us to help each other by providing us with opportunities to gather together
  • Help us channel our emotions into making a positive change through advocacy
  • Honor our inner strength: don’t feel sorry for us
  • Provide training and on-going supervision that includes:
    • Accurate statistics about children and families of the incarcerated
    • Strategies for respecting family relationships and circumstances
    • Understanding self-awareness and bias
    • Skills for building trust
    • Strategies for helping children and their parents and caregivers communicate about difficult topics
  • Involve youth of incarcerated parents and their families in decisions about programs, policies and practices
  • When possible given safety and security considerations, courts should sentence and correctional agencies should place incarcerated parents at facilities close to their children and families, as closer proximity increases the chances for opportunities to visit and maintain family relationships
  • Agencies should understand the complexities of collaboration with and between other agencies (such as schools and corrections) because of confidentiality requirements
  • Create lists of available resources and make them accessible

 
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