Thursday, August 19, 2010

Reunification Food For Thought

Here is food for thought: 

If these fathers, who are incarcerated for crimes against other citizens, allowed to stay in contact with their children, then why is it the courts, upon recommendations of an all powerful case manager, terminate parental rights, never to see the children and the children never to see family members again, when the only charge (if there are even any charges filed) is being poor.

 Next thing you know you will have social workers advocating total censorship on social networks and all internet activities in communicating with individuals from families who have been eternally separated through the termination of parental rights.

If this program can exist in the prison system, then why can it not be adopted in child welfare.

Prison program unites inmates, children

They were unlikely dance partners in an unlikely dance hall: a 29-year-old murderer and a 10-year-old boy doing an impromptu tango as Luther Vandross' "Dance with My Father" sounded from a boom box in a prison gym.

It was one of the lighter moments at the emotional end of a weeklong summer camp where inmate dads and their children reconnected after years apart. Seven fathers -- all in prison-issued jeans and blue, short-sleeved shirts -- swayed to the song with their children, some openly crying.

The Hope House Father to Child Summer Camp Behind Bars recently held at the prison offered them a hint of what life together could have been like.

Federal and state prisons in Ohio, North Carolina and Maryland have hosted this summer camp for 10 years, but the program at the North Branch Correctional Institution in July was the first in a maximum-security facility.
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