Children of Incarcerated Caregivers

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The Human Rights Program (HRP) has been a close collaborator with non-profit organization Children of Incarcerated Caregivers (CIC) since it was established in 2015. CIC works to improve the lives of children whose primary caregivers are incarcerated in the United States and abroad and is committed to providing students a unique opportunity to do in-depth research, network, and to advocate in meaningful ways to contribute to this goal. HRP Director Barbara Frey was an original CIC Advisory Board Member and continues to serve on that board today. Each spring, the Global Studies department offers a Human Rights internship class, in which a student from completes an internship with CIC. Interns often focus on framing parental incarceration as an international human rights issue. Furthermore, lawyers can receive Minnesota CLE credits for listening to the podcasts.

HRP and CIC look forward to their continued collaboration in bringing awareness to the impact on children when a parent is incarcerated.

CLE Podcast: Considering the Parental Role at Sentencing 

Children of Incarcerated Caregivers and the Human Rights Podcast on Considering the Parental Role at Sentencing

Children of Incarcerated Caregivers (CIC) and the University of Minnesota Human Rights Program present a six-part podcast on parental incarceration. In each episode, public defender Michael Holland interviews a different expert to explore how and why lawyers and judges should consider the best interests of the child during a caregiver’s sentencing hearing.

Barbara Frey and HRP have also been integrally involved in the podcast CIC created to encourage lawyers and judges to consider the parent-child relationship before a parent is sentenced in a criminal court proceeding.

Lawyers can receive continuing legal education (CLE) credits by listening to this podcast series. More information can be found under each episode. 

Episodes are available to listen to through CIC's website, Spotify, Apple, and Google

Episode 1: Families and Federal Sentencing

Why is it important to raise family circumstances in federal court sentencing proceedings? Dulce Foster, white collar criminal defense attorney and CIC Advisory Board member, joins host Michael Holland to  tackle that question. She discusses the post-Booker consideration of parent-child relationships as a basis for a downward variance from federal sentencing guidelines and outlines key cases.

Listen to Episode 1 and see more information at CIC's website.

You can also listen to Episode 1 on these services:

Spotify

Apple

Google

Episode 2: Parental Incarceration and Human Rights

This week, we’re joined by Barbara Frey: lawyer, CIC Advisory Board member, and Director of the University of Minnesota Human Rights Program. She explains the significance of parental incarceration as a human rights issue, highlighting recommendations from international governing bodies whose courts consider the best interests of the child at every sentencing of a parent.

Listen to Episode 2 and see more information at CIC's website.

You can also listen to Episode 1 on these services:

Spotify

Apple

Google

Episode 3: Considering Collateral Consequences

Could restorative justice be the key to solving parental incarceration? Ethan Scrivner, Assistant City Attorney for the City of Duluth, joins our podcast this week to answer that question. He and Michael  discuss the important role of the prosecutor in sentencing hearings and best practices for raising the collateral consequences of parental incarceration with a prosecutor before sentencing. They also examine the use of community-based alternatives to prison or jail.

Listen to Episode 3 and see more information at CIC's website.

You can also listen to Episode 1 on these services:

Spotify

Apple

Google

Episode 4: Harms of Parental Incarceration

Michael is joined by Rebecca Shlafer, PhD, MPH, Assistant Professor in General Pediatrics and Adolescent Health at the University of Minnesota. They discuss parental incarceration as an ACE (Adverse Childhood Experience) that affects youth outcomes. They also consider how research on the harms of parental incarceration, as well as harms facing the children of a particular defendant, can be brought to the attention of the sentencing judge.

Listen to Episode 4 and see more information at CIC's website.

You can also listen to Episode 1 on these services:

Spotify

Apple

Google

Episode 5: Minnesota Law on Sentencing

Parental incarceration is an international issue, but this week, we focus on CIC’s home state. Mike is joined by Judge Mark Wernick, retired Hennepin County District Court judge and former member of the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines Commission to discuss raising family circumstances in Minnesota sentencing proceedings. Judge Wernick explains how Minnesota judges can consider the parent-child relationship at sentencing, highlighting relevant portions of the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines and Minnesota case law. They also discuss the use of family impact statements to inform judges about family circumstances prior to sentencing hearings.

Listen to Episode 5 and see more information at CIC's website.

You can also listen to Episode 1 on these services:

Spotify

Apple

Google

Episode 6: Practice Points for Downward Departure

Margaret Hinson was a CIC intern back in 2018 and is now a third-year J.D. Candidate at the University of California-Irvine School of Law. She comes on our podcast to review the previous five episodes and to provide suggestions for incorporating their salient points into a motion for a downward departure in a hypothetical Minnesota case.

Listen to Episode 6 and see more information at CIC's website.

You can also listen to Episode 1 on these services:

Spotify

Apple

Google

 

Prison Nursery Project/Podcast

What are the risks and benefits of children living in a prison setting with a parent? What are the alternatives? CIC’s Prison Nursery Project, a collaboration with the Human Rights Program of the University of Minnesota, focuses on the best interests of children who live in prison nurseries. We urge those working in criminal legal systems to consider the risks, benefits, and alternatives to having children live with a parent while that parent is incarcerated. 

Through the Prison Nursery Podcast, CIC explores the complex topic of prison nursery programs with a variety of experienced and knowledgeable guest speakers. In recent years, Human Rights Program interns have assisted with the development of a podcast on prison nurseries; programs within correctional institutions where children live with an incarcerated parent. Through this podcast, HRP and CIC hope to generate more awareness of prison nursery programs and promote thoughtful consideration of whether these programs serve the best interests of children. You can listen to the Prison Nursery Podcast episodes through the following links.