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Prisoner’s Kids: The Invisible Victims of Crime recognised for diverting prisoner’s kids from Detention

Media release

19 October 2017

Prisoner’s Kids: The Invisible Victims of Crime today received a gold award in the community-led category of the 2017 Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards (ACVPA).

The ACVPAs recognise best practice in the prevention or reduction of violence and other types of crime in Australia.

“The Prisoner’s Kids Family Care Team works with children and families who have a parent in prison because they are seven times more likely to go to prison than their peers. Targeting this vulnerable cohort of prisoner’s kids and diverting them from the criminal justice system, aims to break the intergenerational cycle of crime,” said Second Chances SA CEO, Helen Glanville.

"Everyday we see the stigma confronted by prisoner's kids and their reality of being teased and bullied because they have a parent in prison. It is not their fault.

“Investing directly in vulnerable prisoner's kids gives them confidence and hope for a crime free future of their own. Diverting prisoner's kids from detention has an enormous crime prevention benefit for the whole community.

“Research shows if we intervene early in the lives of prisoner’s kids by positively mentoring them, teaching them good values, giving personal goal planning and providing positive role models, we can stop them from becoming the prisoners of tomorrow.

“Winning the ACVPA is a momentous moment in bringing the plight of Prisoner's Kids out from the shadows ensuring they are no longer 'invisible' but are encouraged to choose positive life goals of their own,” said Ms Glanville.  

These annual awards recognise the outstanding contributions being made across Australia for crime prevention, including the development and implementation of practical projects to reduce violence and other types of crime in the community.

“Prisoner’s Kids: The Invisible Victims of Crime, addresses a very important but under-appreciated and under-valued area of urgent need to stem the normalisation of crime through children’s exposure to their parent’s offending and their criminal associates,” said acting Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) Director, Nicole Rose PSM.

“This unique and necessary program, addresses both violent and non-violent crime through early intervention support including mentoring camps, home visits and providing social support with links to other community services especially good youth groups.

“It is the only project of its kind in South Australia and possibly Australia, and is a big step in confronting the next generation of criminals,” said Ms Rose.

All projects are assessed each year by the ACVPA Board, which consists of senior law enforcement representatives from each state and territory police service, and chaired by the acting AIC Director.

South Australia ACVPA Board representative, Senior Sergeant Neil Hodgson, said the Prisoner’s Kids initiative has identified the need for early intervention support to assist young people who have a parent serving a custodial sentence. 

“This is an important program to assist young people through this difficult time and this is done through the Prisoner’s Kids Family Care Team supporting positive behaviour and good choices by the young people. Prisoner’s Kids are a worthy recipient of the gold award in the community-led category for 2017,” said Senior Sergeant Hodgson.

The awards are a joint initiative of the Australian, State and Territory governments, coordinated by the AIC and co-sponsored by the Law, Crime and Community Safety Council.

To learn more about the 2017 Gold ACVPA winners, watch this video.

For more information about the award winners, visit www.aic.gov.au/acvpa

To view the latest crime and justice statistics visit www.crimestats.aic.gov.au

AIC Media:
(02) 6268 7343
media@acic.gov.au