Justice and prisoners’ families
What is Justice? Working Papers
The Howard League for Penal Reform
Previous research has shown that prisoners' families in the UK are greatly affected by imprisonment: financially, socially, emotionally and practically. Despite an ever-growing body of literature, however, the topic of prisoners' families has not yet become one of the key themes in criminology and the sociology of punishment. Criminal justice policy has also failed to engage with the needs of prisoners' families, with criminal justice discourse being largely focused on justice as defined by punishments and deserts. Building on the concept of social justice, this paper argues that a broader understanding of justice within criminal justice is sorely needed if social justice is to be achieved for prisoners' families. It then discusses four types of injustices that are highlighted by thinking of prisoners' families through a social justice lens. It concludes that to do justice for prisoners' families, there is a need to broaden the meaning of justice in criminal justice, and discuss social justice and the collateral consequences of imprisonment.
I would like to thank the Sir Halley Steward Trust for funding my Ph.D project – 'Making love last: Maintaining intimate relationships with long-term prisoners'. This paper has developed as a result of my work on this project over the past year. All views expressed in this paper are mine alone and not necessarily those of the Trust. I also extend my gratitude to my supervisor, Dr. Rachel Condry, and to Dr. Joyce Arditti for their valuable feedback on an earlier draft of this paper.
This is the final version of the paper. Available from the publisher via the link in this record.
Howard League What is Justice? Working Papers, 5/2014