28th March 2011

Eurochips is gearing up for the second edition of the European Prisoners’ Children Awareness Week campaign which is now underway for 2011. The general message of the campaign is that the issue of prisoners’ children is a public health issue, and specific attention needs to be paid to the repercussions of parental incarceration on the child’s psychological development and future socialization. The campaign’s main objectives are to urge the creation of national observatories for children with imprisoned parents in member countries, and to move policymakers at the EU level to endorse a series of recommendations that aim to improve prison visits conditions for children.

A kick-off event will be held at the European Parliament in Brussels on 25 May, where a series of recommendations will be presented to MEPS as part of a transnational EU-funded study on children with imprisoned parents, piloted by the Danish Institute of Human Rights. The overall objective of the study and recommendations is to promote the development of uniform legal rights, policy and administrative practices in the EU to secure the best interests of children of imprisoned parents.

The campaign will be conducted via two main avenues to build a demonstrable public support for Eurochips’ recommendations: awareness-raising through the use of e-tools and online medias such as a blog campaign page and e-banners of campaign visuals; and a petition drive.

The European Prisoners’ Children Week is slated for the first week of June 2011, during which Eurochips’ member organizations will hold events in their respective locations, and in line with the campaign theme “Invisible,” are bringing children with imprisoned parents into the spotlight.

The campaign itself lies in the hands of Sara Rahman, Campaign Director, and Ryan Christen, Media Director who are volunteering their enthusiasm and expertise. Sara studied history as an undergraduate at Yale University and reproductive justice as a graduate fellow at the Institut d’Études Politiques de Paris (Sciences Po). Ryan completed her Master’s degrees in International Relations, Conflict Resolution, and Civil Society Development at the American University of Paris and l’Institut Catholique and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Public Relations from Seattle University.

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Author: rmchristen