Getting there and being there: Visits to prisons in Victoria – the experiences of women prisoners and their children
Maintaining mother–child contact when a parent is imprisoned is accepted as important; the benefits of visiting are seen to extend beyond that relationship, to other members of the family and to the prison itself. This article discusses research findings about the extent and nature of visiting engaged in by adolescent children while their mothers were in prison, in Victoria, Australia, from the perspectives of the children and their mothers. In the current study, while findings confirm much of what is already known about barriers to prison visiting, the study extends this knowledge. Findings support the need to engage children’s views on this topic; to examine the current methodologies used to measure prison visitation; and to more fully understand the impact of arrest and imprisonment circumstances on arranging children’s care, including plans for visitation.