Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Over 1.7 Million Children Have A Parent In Prison

WASHINGTON, Aug 26, 2008 /PRNewswire-USNewswire via COMTEX/ --

An estimated 809,800 prisoners of the 1,518,535 held in the nation's prison at midyear 2007 were parents of minor children, according to a report by the Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). Parents in prison -? 52 percent of state inmates and 63 percent of federal inmates -? reported having an estimated 1,706,600 minor children. Among state inmates, the percent of parents in prison decreased from 55 percent in 1997 but has remained stable for federal inmates.

About 2.3 percent of the 74 million children in the U.S. resident population who were under the age of 18 on July 1, 2007, had a parent in prison. Black and Hispanic children were about eight and three times, respectively, more likely than white children to have a parent in prison. Among minor children in the U.S. resident population, 6.7 percent of black children, 2.4 percent of Hispanic children, and 0.9 percent of white children had a parent in prison. State inmates who were parents reported that nearly a quarter of their children were age four or younger and reported having two children on average.

Among fathers in state and federal prisons, more than four in 10 were black, about three in 10 were white, and about two in 10 were Hispanic. Among mothers, 48 percent were white, 28 percent were black, and 17 percent were Hispanic.
State inmates age 25 to 34 (64 percent) were most likely to report being a parent, those age 55 or older (13 percent) were the least likely. Hispanic (57 percent) and black (54 percent) state inmates were more likely to report being a parent than white (46 percent) inmates. Findings were similar among men held in state prison, while the likelihood of being a parent did not vary by race among women.

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