In commemoration of the Universal Children’s Day , Wells of Hope has released a 59 page Publication entitled , Children in the Shadows ,Children Paying the price of their Parents imprisonment .
This publication, the first and the only one of its kind on children with imprisoned parents in Uganda,we present findings , experiences and risks faced by children with imprisoned parents in Uganda, we also pose recommendations drawn from our experience in working with children imprisoned parents.
We hope that this publication will make the government, policy makers, wells wishers, local and international child rights actors to move and remove Ugandan children out of the shadow of their parents’ imprisonment. And make a step further to help the already affected children.
This publication we hope will go along way to influence study and practice in regard to children with imprisoned parents globally.
As of 18th November 2015 , it is estimated that there are over 45,700 prisoners in Uganda’s prisons; 97.5% of the prisoners are male while women prisoners constitute 2.5%. 60 % of people in Uganda’s prison are on remand (Pre-trial detention) .
In a research carried out by Wells of Hope, it was discovered that on average each inmate has 5 children and an estimate of 228,500 Ugandan children have a parent in prison at a single point in the year and an average of 650,000 will have had a parent being imprisoned at some point in one year, considering that some spend a day or a month and are released .Every day, Uganda’s prisons are swelling for instance early 2013 Uganda’s prison population stood at 32,000, and as November 2015 prison reports, the inmate population stands at 45,700, an increase by over 27% this implies that the number of children of prisoners has increased over the years by the same percentage. And these numbers are increasing every day.
There is no safety net for Children with imprisoned parents in Uganda, as such these children are left to face the wrath that comes with having a parent in prison .
Children are facing untold suffering and pain while their parents are in prison . Many of them coming from poverty striken homes, face Hunger, Malnutrition, disease even leading to death. They face a lot of stigma and Ostracism from the society .Many have dropped out of school, they are sexually abused, they face child labour and many have no contacts with their parents in prison.
Key recommendations include:
- Involve the Schools .
- Change the way arrests are carried out.
- Reduce case back log by providing speedy trials and provide free legal services.
- Step up public awareness.
- Involve the media, and also the media should be sensitive in reporting.
- Support the Uganda Prison service.
- Support Charities like Wells of Hope
- Support Caregivers especially grand mothers.
- Uganda government should implement resolution 22/11, of the United Nation Human Rights in regard to children affected by the death penalty .
- Abolish The Death Penalty because of its adverse effects on children.
- Support ex-prisoners.
Wells of Hope also informs that If the government of Uganda considered recommendations in this publication , the rate of offending and re-offending would be lowered and as such they would save a lot of money ! Because government spend a lot of money on people in prison.
We thank all our partners in Uganda and worldwide for helping us make differences in the lives of these children and helping us come this far.
Finally we asking any well wishers to donate funds to help us to improve on this publication and make copies, we highly believe its going to change many lives of children with imprisoned parents. We need USd 2800 to make 700 copies and to make better design.
Click here to download a Full Copy of the publication
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Wells of Hope Ministries