Intergenerational incarceration in New South Wales: Characteristics of people in prison experiencing parental imprisonment

Photo of handcuffed prisoner holding paper fold family

This study uses data from two state-wide surveys conducted in NSW prisons and youth justice centres in 2015 to examine the epidemiology of intergenerational incarceration. One in six (16.9%) adults in prison and over half (52.6%) of young people in youth justice centres reported that a parent had been imprisoned. For Aboriginal participants, 32.0 percent of adults and 66.4 percent of young people reported a previously incarcerated parent. Women were more than twice as likely as men to report that their mother had been in prison. Younger participants, those who had completed fewer years of schooling, and those previously in out-of-home care were more likely to report that a parent had been incarcerated. The high prevalence of intergenerational incarceration in NSW correctional settings, particularly among young people in youth justice centres and Aboriginal peoples in custody, highlights the need for interventions to support parents in prison and at-risk children whose parents are incarcerated.


URLs correct as at November 2022

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