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NCJ Number: NCJ 229378   Add to Shopping cart   Find in a Library
Title: Effects of Parental Imprisonment on Child Antisocial Behaviour and Mental Health: A Systematic Review
  Document URL: PDF 
  Dataset URL: DATASET 1
Author(s): Joseph Murray ; David P. Farrington ; Ivana Sekol ; Rikke F. Olsen
Corporate Author: Campbell Collaboration
Date Published: 09/2009
Page Count: 107
  Annotation: This literature review (16 studies) assessed whether parental imprisonment is a predictor of a child's antisocial behavior and poor mental health; examined evidence related to possible causal effects of parental imprisonment on children's antisocial behavior; and considered whether characteristics of children, parents, prisons, and wider social and penal settings might moderate the effects on children of parental imprisonment.
Abstract: All 16 studies indicated that children of prisoners are more likely than other children to exhibit antisocial and mental health problems. Children with a parent in prison are at risk for acting out or becoming withdrawn, anxious, or depressed. The studies were unclear, however, regarding whether imprisonment of a parent was a direct cause of a child's problem behavior and poor mental health. The imprisonment of a parent can adversely impact the environment in which a child is raised. Parental imprisonment can create difficulty in providing suitable child care; diminish family income; deprive children of the emotional benefits of bonding with a parent; and cause changes that require children to adjust to a new neighborhood, new school, and new people. Still, there may be disadvantages in children's lives unrelated to parental imprisonment, which may have a more powerful adverse influence on their development. Still, there is little doubt that children of inmates are at risk for problem behaviors and emotional disorders. Additional research is required in order to determine whether the imprisonment of a parent has a direct adverse impact on his/her children's development. The literature review involved a search for studies of children of prisoners guided by contacts with experts in the field, an examination of the bibliographies of prior reviews, and searches of electronic databases of references for the years 1960 to 2008. The searches were international in scope and involved both published and unpublished literature. 131 references, approximately 140 reference listings not included in the review, and appended coding sheets and detailed descriptions of the 16 studies
Main Term(s): Juvenile delinquency factors
Index Term(s): Problem behavior ; Mental disorders ; Children of incarcerated offenders ; Children at risk ; NIJ final report
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
US Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
United States of America

British Academy
United Kingdom

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)
United Kingdom

SFI - Danish National Centre for Social Research
Grant Number: 2007-IJ-CX-0045; RES-000-22-2311
Sale Source: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America

Campbell Collaboration
P.O. Box 7004
St. Olavs plass
Oslo, Norway
Type: Literature Review
Country: United States of America
Language: English
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