§ Mr. Jim Cunningham
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what efforts his Department is making to reduce the impact of parental imprisonment on children aged under 16 years. 
§ Paul Goggins
[holding answer 1 April 2004]: The Prison Service recognises that the imprisonment of a parent can have a significant impact on their children. The training programme for new prison officers includes a module to raise awareness of the needs of such children. The Prison Service is also developing a pilot partnership programme with the Lankelly Foundation and the Ormiston Children and Families Trust, to offer a comprehensive package of services and support to the families of prisoners. This work will take place in prisons, as well as in the wider community, and will include work with other agencies such as education, health and social services.
Specific projects include: development of and improvements to visitors' centers; creation of family liaison officer posts within prisons; training for local staff who come into contact with families; community support services; enhanced children's visits programmes; support for alternative contact for children who do not visit; family awareness programmes; parenting from prison courses; post-release support; information to families; and research.