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In Prison, Toddlers Serve Time With Mom

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posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 03:06 PM

In Prison, Toddlers Serve Time With Mom

Karina Rendón, a 23-year-old serving time for drug dealing, said her 2-year-old daughter thought of the 144-square-foot cell she shared with two other mothers and their children as home. “She doesn’t know it is a prison,” she said, smiling sadly. “She thinks it’s her house.”

While a prison may seem an unhealthy place for a child, in the early 1990s the Mexico City government decided it was better for children born in prison to stay with their mothers until they were 6 rather than to be turned over to relatives or foster parents.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 03:06 PM
This is just nuts!

The article states that some of the offenses that these women are in prison for are drug dealing, kidnapping, and HOMICIDE!

Obviously these women have PROBLEMS. How can, allowing their children live with them in jail, be better than allowing the kids to live a NORMAL life with relatives or foster parents!

The warden had this to say:

A mother’s crime plays no role in the decision to let her keep a baby born in jail, the warden said.

Pure insanity if you ask me.

The warden also stated that the kids had a calming effect on the inmates in the prison. Now there's a good reason to allow a child to grow up in a prison!(sarcasm)
(visit the link for the full news article)

[edit on 1/1/08 by Keyhole]

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 03:17 PM
reply to post by Keyhole

We all know apples do not fall far from the tree. Many people in prison had messed up parents who were criminals themselves, abusive, and/or had drug problems. In at least some cases, having a child live with its mother in prison may be a lesser evil than having the child live with its degenerate family outside of prison.

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 03:33 PM
Makes sense to me. The kid doesn't know it's a prison. Keeps the bond between mother and child. Maybe this bond, while the mother does her time, will give her a reason to not reoffend and be there for the child for life.

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 03:37 PM
My main concern with this is the children being brought up around fellow prisoners who are less then wholesome. You know the ones who fight with each other or the ones who yell constantly at guards or any other type of illicit activity going on.

Now grant doesn't mean these kids wouldn't experience it on the "outside".

But a prison environment just doesn't seem very healthy for a child.

Id be REALY interested in hearing from some of the fellow members here who are prison guards (previously or presently)...and hear what they have to say about it!

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 03:44 PM
reply to post by greeneyedleo

I work in Canada's largest correctional facility. It's a VERY structured environment. According to the article their "house", they really do call their cells "houses", is shared by other mothers with kids. Better there than a crack house. And it may give the mothers something to live for.

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 03:46 PM
reply to post by Keyhole

They don't "serve time".
They are with their mothers, because it's better for them (depending on the case, of course) than to be placed in foster homes and such.

As the article says: they don't know it's a prison. To them, it's home.

And, after all, home IS where the "heart" (in this case mummy) is.
It's certainly not the worse fate that can befall a child.

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 03:47 PM
reply to post by intrepid

Oh thanks!!
I knew there were some of you around!! I knew yall could offer a perspective that the rest of us wouldnt have!


posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 04:15 PM
It's better for the child. Most people can remember a couple years before age six, so this would ensure the mother leaves a healthy imprint with strong memories. Better for a child to grow up knowing exactly who its mother is than just knowing her as the lady behind the glass.

To show them that a wider world exists, the teachers try to take the children on field trips as often as possible. Their budget is limited and they rely on charity for the outings. They have managed only three this year — to a museum, an amusement park and a children’s theater.

Give these people money!

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 05:29 PM
Better then ending up on the foster care circuit charching parents 300k for a child I think this is better kudos for keeping a family together

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 05:51 PM
As a Correctional Officer with almost 18 years experience I'm betwixt and between on this one.

I can see nighmarishish things happening such as the harm that would befall the children in the event of a riot or major disturbance. I don't even want to think how hard that would be for all involved. They would also make excellent hostages; I'm a tower officer now and policy states that hostages have no rank but if some one was threatening to harm a small child.........the very thought scares me. The security issues on this one are huge.

On the other hand I'm also a mother and I know how important those first years are in forming the bond between mother and child. I know that most mothers will do anything to protect the little ones and keep them with them so on that aspect I tend to believe that behavioral problems with those inmates would be lessened.

It's not an all together bad idea if and only if security issues can be resolved. Frequently prisons have special programs to keep families together since family support post release is huge if we don't want the inmates back. Most prisons are instuting family friendly programs in an effort to promote family togetherness. We offer parenting classes so that hopefully when the inmate is released he will have an idea of how to be an effective parent. We also have special programs aimed at family involvement.

I can see both good and bad on this one and I tend to believe that in the long run if all the bugs could be ironed out that this could prove benificial to both the mother and the child.

posted on Jan, 1 2008 @ 06:12 PM
reply to post by gallopinghordes

Yes but the "code" still applies. If someone were to harm or abduct a child, their life would be worthless. The lifers would do them. They have an "honor code". See what would happen if a pedophile got into general pop. I'd wager that a child would be more secure on the inside than at a crack house.

posted on Jan, 2 2008 @ 08:41 AM

While the honor code may still be in place in Canada it is fast disappearing here. Most of the inmates we get don't care about their own lives let alone anybody else's'. We get very few of the old time convicts which is making our prisons ever more dangerous.

However, women's prisons may be different but as you know in a riot situation all bets are off and the children will be in extreme danger. I assume perhaps erroneously so that the women with children would be separated at least to some degree from the more dangerous general population.

I still believe that if the safety of the children could be assured that this program could work and be beneficial to not only the mother and child but society as a whole. I'm not totally against this program but as a custody officer I would have reservations. If the risks to the children could be mitigated I would support it. Keeping the toddlers with their mothers can only be a good thing. It would provide much needed bonding time and incentive for the mother to participate in programs that would after release provide her with job skills allowing her to support her child and herself without (we hope) returning to prison. I can see good things coming from a program such as this.

[edit on 2-1-2008 by gallopinghordes]

posted on Jan, 2 2008 @ 01:20 PM
Here's a few quotes from the original article:


And even though the prison is full of women capable of violence, the children USUALLY walk safely among them,

So, what happens to the children walking among the inmates when this violence DOES break out?

And what do they mean by USUALLY? Doesn't this kind of imply that SOMETIMES the children aren't ALWAYS safe?

A debate continues among Mexican academics over whether spending one’s early years in a jail causes mental problems later in life,

Good experiment, let's find out if "spending one’s early years in a jail causes mental problems later in life."

Several said they waged a constant struggle to keep their children from getting sick in the damp, drafty cells. They often have no money for the prescriptions the prison doctor gives them.

And from one of the mothers:

I think the best thing for my daughter would be for her to be outside with her grandmother,” Ms. Rendón said. “I have to take her to work with me.” She pauses. “But the truth is I need her. She is something very special.”

And here is a mother who KNOWS what would be best for her child, but is more worried about HER needs than what she thinks would be best for her child.

EDIT: to add source

[edit on 2/1/08 by Keyhole]

posted on Jan, 2 2008 @ 01:25 PM
reply to post by Keyhole

Would you mind giving the sources for you quotes please? For one, prescriptions are provided without cost to the inmates.

GH, things are a lot different in a woman's prison. There is a lot more violence in the men's program. A LOT MORE. Not saying it doesn't happen with women but it's minimal.

posted on Jan, 2 2008 @ 01:34 PM
These are quotes from the original article.
I posted that at the top of the post, but since I can still edit the post, I'll add the link.

In Prison, Toddlers Serve Time With Mom

posted on Jan, 2 2008 @ 01:44 PM

Originally posted by intrepid

For one, prescriptions are provided without cost to the inmates.

You have to remember that this is in Mexico, Mexico City to be exact.

Things like prescriptions must not be free there, according to the article.
Or maybe they are free to inmates but not their children?

posted on Jan, 2 2008 @ 03:35 PM
Children have served with their mothers here for decades, there haven't been any major problems. Children usually bring a positive impact to the general inmate population in female prisons, everyone seems to concentrate on helping the mothers...

posted on Jan, 2 2008 @ 04:00 PM
Im 100% for this.

And i agree with Intrepid.

Even if the standard inmate "code" from canada is not followed in other countries, there would still be a higher percentage of inmates with a consience than those without. I dont think there could be a general concensus of hate towards children in any population, unless it was a desire of the administration.

This falls right in line with rehabilitation and human rights, and im all for it.

posted on Jan, 3 2008 @ 12:30 AM
Sounds good.
People whining about it do not realise the prisons these women are coming from anyway, the prisons of poverty, abuse, neglect, and hopelessness.

What was going on up there in the thread with someone crapping a load in their pants about mothers in jail for drug dealing?

Big deal. Just because she is doing time for stupid laws doesn't mean she was an AK-47 toting one woman drug cartel. She needed money and her friends needed stash, the cops needed one more victim on the books to get their USA drug fighting dollars, its a cycle.

There are plenty of horrible, filthy nasty places people are being raised without healthcare, without real parenting, and its right in your back yard. The product of those environments will most likely harm you or someone you know long before they make it to a prison.

Now you can pull your panties out of your crack over other people's children being raised in ways you have absolutely no say in and no solution beyond
an impoverished pipedream to promote.

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