Children of prisoners - maintaining family ties
Findings - partnerships
- There is little in the way of service level agreements or their equivalent between the children’s and criminal justice services about what should happen when a child has a parent arrested. Consequently, much of the work that does take place is based on informal arrangements, including development of local informal working relationships across sectors, and good will.
- Many assumptions are made about the roles and responsibilities of others. These myths about other services can result in a lack of coordination, communication and action. Ironically, most of the practice sites felt this was too complex a piece of work to do in isolation because of the interface between so many sectors. Consequently, a multi-disciplinary response is crucial.
- There is some evidence of good partnership working. Some is underpinned by guidance and legislation, such as the Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA). Some partnerships are based on service level agreements – such as in Scotland, Northern Ireland, Partners of Prisoners (POPS) – and some on informal arrangements and good will, such as the Thames Valley.