The Relationship Between Parental Imprisonment and Offspring Offending in England and The Netherlands

This peer reviewed article investigates whether children of prisoners have more convictions as adults than their peers whose parents were not sentenced to prison but did incur convictions.

This is examined using two longitudinal data sets: the Cambridge Study in Delinquent Development and the NSCR Transfive Study between 1946 until 1981 in England and the Netherlands. Findings show that there was no notable relationship discovered between the imprisonment of a parent and the offending behaviour of their children in the Netherlands. However, in England, there was a connection found but only for sons. This can be explained in part by the criminality of the parents however in light of controlling various parental convictions and risk factors in childhood for example, a meaningful connection remained between the amount of parental imprisonments and offence rates of sons'. The study notes that sons' offending was only predicated by parental imprisonment after the age of 7. See The British Journal of Criminology to view this publication if you have a log in.

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