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MATERNAL SEPARATIONS DURING THE REENTRY YEARS FOR 100 INFANTS RAISED IN A PRISON NURSERY

Authors


mwb4@columbia.edu

Abstract

Prison nurseries prevent maternal separations related to incarceration for the small subset of children whose pregnant mothers are incarcerated in states with such programs. For a cohort of 100 children accepted by corrections into one prison nursery, subsequent separation patterns are analyzed. The largest numbers are caused by corrections' removal of infants from the nursery and infants reaching a one-year age limit. Criminal recidivism and substance abuse relapse threaten continued mothering during reentry. Focused and coordinated services are needed during prison stay and reentry years to sustain mothering for women and children accepted into prison nursery programs.

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