Children of prisoners - maintaining family ties
Findings - funding
- There is no specific statutory funding for this work and there are concerns about the impact upon already depleted and stretched resources.
- Provision comes largely from the voluntary sector, where funding is often short-term and from a range of sources. Consequently, services are not always able to plan for the future, jobs can be under threat and the services offered to children may be withdrawn.
- In Northern Ireland and Scotland, provision is funded by the prison service and probation. Although this is still applied for on a regular basis, it would seem that there is far more security in this arrangement, reflecting the need for a mainstreaming of provision.
- It has to be acknowledged that in England it is a postcode lottery as to whether children are in a geographical location with any specific services for them. This is further complicated if a child is not living in the same locality as the prison where their parent is being held as there are issues over financial responsibility.
- A pooling of resources for the children and families affected by imprisonment may result in a more coordinated and better-funded response.