Monday, November 5, 2018
Amy Cyphert (West Virginia University - College of Law) has posted Prisoners of Fate: The Challenges of Creating Change for Children of Incarcerated Parents (Maryland Law Review, Vol. 77, 2018) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:
Children of incarcerated parents, the invisible victims of mass incarceration, suffer tremendous physical, psychological, educational, and financial burdens—detrimental consequences that can continue even long after a parent has been released. Although these children are blameless, policy makers, judges, and prison officials in charge of visitation policies have largely overlooked them. The United States Sentencing Commission Guidelines Manual explicitly instructs judges to ignore children when fashioning their parents’ sentences, and judges have largely hewed to this policy, even in the wake of the 2005 United States v. Booker decision that made those Guidelines merely advisory, not mandatory. Although some scholars have suggested amending the Guidelines or making other legislative changes that would bring children’s interests forward at the sentencing phase, these suggestions are less likely than ever to bear fruit.