Skip to main content

Table 4 Mothers’ needs as identified by women, stakeholders and professionals in relation to the identified themes in the review

From: The needs and experiences of mothers while in prison and post-release: a rapid review and thematic synthesis

Themes Needs In prison Post-release References
  Individual Needs    
Prison as a traumatic space Culturally appropriate trauma informed support x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a)
Ongoing cycle of disadvantage Drug and alcohol services x x (Burgess, 2016; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Stone, 2013)
Mental health services x x (Burgess, 2016; Stone, 2013; Walker et al., 2019)
Domestic violence services x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a)
Family counselling x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Stone, 2013)
Legal advice x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; Baldry et al., 2008b; Burgess, 2016)
Physical health services x x (ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018)
Transitional and long-term housing   x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Flynn, 2008; Perry et al., 2009; Perry et al., 2011; Rossiter et al., 2015, b; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2015; Walker, 2018)
Educational and vocational training x x (Baldry et al., 2008a; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2015)
Addressing poverty and other systemic factors which perpetuate crime   x (Johnson et al., 2019; Stone, 2013)
Transition out of prison as a vulnerable period Pre-release planning x   (Flynn, 2008)
Continuity of care   x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2015; Stone et al., 2017)
Services which address intersecting needs   x (Burgess, 2016; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Stone, 2013)
Intensive post-release health support for women with complex health needs   x (Burgess, 2016; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Stone, 2013)
Needs related to children    
Mothers Identity and maternal role in prison Support for parenting and parenting skills x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; Baldry et al., 2008b; Flynn, 2008, 2014; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Perry et al., 2011; Rossiter et al., 2016; Rossiter et al., 2015, b; Stone, 2013; Walker et al., 2019; Walker, 2018)
Involvement in planning care arrangements for children including time to plan and realistic expectations of risk of imprisonment at sentencing x   (Burgess, 2016; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Flynn, 2008; Flynn, 2013)
Access to parenting programs x   (Frye & Dawe, 2008; Perry et al., 2009; Perry et al., 2011; Rossiter et al., 2016; Rossiter et al., 2015, b)
Pre-release planning x   (Flynn, 2008)
Legal and other support to assist with reunification with children   x (Burgess, 2016; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Flynn, 2008, 2011; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Perry et al., 2009; Perry et al., 2011; Rossiter et al., 2016; Rossiter et al., 2015, b; Stone et al., 2015; Stone et al., 2017; Walker, 2018)
Importance and disruption of mother-child relationship A range of options for positive ongoing contact, including predictable and high quality in-person visits with children in safe, conducive environments and affordable, flexible contact via phone and mail x   (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Flynn, 2008; Flynn, 2013; Flynn, 2014; Perry et al., 2009; Perry et al., 2011; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2017)
Broader access to in-prison residential care arrangements for children that does not routinely exclude women on remand x   (Walker, 2018)
In-prison residential care arrangements for children x   (Walker, 2018)
Facilitation of contact through coordination with child protection services    (Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006)
Ensuring the needs and rights of the child are met Children’s needs    
Housing x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008b; Burgess, 2016; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Perry et al., 2009; Una Stone et al., 2015; Stone et al., 2017)
Care arrangements x x (Burgess, 2016; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Flynn, 2008, 2011, 2012; Flynn, 2013; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2017; Walker et al., 2019)
Schooling x x (Baldry et al., 2008b; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006)
Physical health x x (Walker, 2018)
Safety x x (Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Perry et al., 2009)
Emotional support x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; Baldry et al., 2008b; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Flynn, 2008, 2014; Frye & Dawe, 2008)
Contact with parent x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; Baldry et al., 2008b; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Flynn, 2008, 2014; Frye & Dawe, 2008).
Children who live in adult prisons    
Formalised support for mothers in mother and children units x   (Walker, 2018)
Access to healthcare x   (Walker, 2018)
Access to education x   (Walker, 2018)
Needs related to community and family    
Social and family support (or lack thereof) Family and social support x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Flynn, 2008, 2011, 2012; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Perry et al., 2009; Rossiter et al., 2015, b; Stone, 2013; Walker, 2018)
Stigma Non-stigmatising support services x x (Rossiter et al., 2015, b)
Systems and services    
Accessibility, affordability and acceptability of services, including government and statutory services Comprehensive health services x x (ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018)
Strengths based x x (Rossiter et al., 2016; Stone, 2013)
Provided by trusted individuals x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008b; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2015)
Flexible x x (Baldry et al., 2008a; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2017)
Long term x x (Frye & Dawe, 2008; Stone, 2013)
Continuity between prison and release x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2015; Stone et al., 2017)
Focus on rehabilitation x x (Stone et al., 2015; Stone et al., 2017)
Individualised and intensive x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008b; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2017)
Co-ordinated across agencies x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; Baldry et al., 2008b; ESSQ Community Services Consultancy, 2018; Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Flynn, 2008; Frye & Dawe, 2008; Stone, 2013; Stone et al., 2017)
Culturally appropriate x x (Baldry, 2009; Baldry et al., 2008a; Baldry et al., 2008b)
Family focused child protection and housing services x x (Stone et al., 2015)
Invisibility of parenting role in government service provision Formal processes which recognise parenting status at all stages of contact with the justice system, including arrest, sentencing, imprisonment and release x x (Flat Out Inc. and VACRO, 2006; Flynn, 2008)
Formal supportive frameworks for residential mother’s and children’s programmes x x (Walker, 2018)
Successes and barriers to parenting programs in prison Access to parenting programs which address parenting issues for both younger and older children and acknowledge separation from children x   (Perry et al., 2009; Perry et al., 2011)