2nd April 2010

“When the Innocent are Punished – Children of Imprisoned Parents” is a EU-funded transnational project launched in October 2009 and piloted by the Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR). The 18-month project, which aims to contribute to the development of harmonised legal rights and administrative practices within the EU for the treatment with dignity of children of imprisoned parents, is innovative in that it takes a child’s rights approach to the subject.

The first objective of the project is to engage civil society and research-based actors in a process of research, awareness-raising and dialogue, focused on the treatment of children of imprisoned parents throughout Europe. Secondly, the DIHR project aims to work with public authorities to assess the present treatment of these children, and, consequently, develop goals based on human rights values as to how we can improve daily practices, administrative regulations, legislative frameworks and national regulations. Lastly, the project will develop a comparative research study for the European Parliament on the treatment of children of imprisoned parents in partner countries and present recommendations on how to improve this treatment in accordance to international human rights standards and to best practices in Europe. In addition to Denmark, project partner countries include Northern Ireland (University of Ulster), Italy (Associazione Bambinisenzasbarre), and Poland (Second Chance Foundation), as well as EUROCHIPS, whose 2006 good practice guide entitled “Children of Imprisoned Parents: European Perspectives on Good Practice” contributed to the development of this EU-funded project. The project is part of the Fundamental Rights and Citizenship Programme of the Directorate General Justice, Freedom and Security.

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Author: rmchristen