by Alison Buist
Supporting Children Affected by Parent Imprisonment
Today Rachael, Mhiran and myself made the 4 hour round trip to HMS Low Moss in Glasgow. We were all feeling quite anxious as we had been sent an email telling us to only take photographic I.D. as our phones and I-watches would be taken off at the door. We had to go through security and leave everything in a secure locker. It was all quite nerve wrecking but as the trainer reminded us, this is the process which children have to go through every time they go to visit a parent in prison.
We were shown the visitors room, the family room and the outdoor area. We were pleasantly surprised at how much additional support they have in place for families and children to meet their needs and to make the visits less traumatic for them because at the end of the day, they haven’t chosen for any of this to happen in their little lives.
The overall experience really impacted on us all emotionally and will be a day which we will never forget. Sometimes the child’s needs are forgotten about in different aspects of life, so it was really refreshing to see that prison services were working closely with the Early Years to move closer to ‘Getting It Right For Every Child.’