Lessons from the Lockdown: Prisoner and Family Connections for the Future

Ty Crawshay - Treforest - Pontypridd Campus


The Centre for Criminology, in collaboration with the Welsh Centre for Crime and Social Justice, is hosting a one-hour online seminar entitled ‘Lessons from the Lockdown: Prisoner and Family Connections for the Future’ on Thursday, 17th September, at 3pm. 

The aims of the seminar are to promote dialogue between practitioners, policy-makers and academics about how the lockdown has affected contact between prisoners and their children and families, what has been done to cope with the situation, what has worked well and not so well, and what lessons might be drawn for the future.  The latter include asking whether some of the measures introduced might have a more lasting effect on practice beyond the end of the pandemic: in particular, whether online contact could be developed further as an enhancement – and even in some cases an alternative – to prison visits. 

This topic will be explored by two child development experts, Professor Julie Poehlmann-Tynan and Elizabeth Sokora from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, who have argued that what they call ‘in-home video chat’ has significant benefits. We also have speakers from custodial institutions for males, females and young people.  

The programme includes inputs from:

  • Corin Morgan-Armstrong from HMP Parc, who developed the ‘Invisible Walls Wales’ programme to improve contact between prisoner fathers and their children.
  • Hayley Simpson, Safer Wales, who leads the Through the Gate team in HMP Eastwood Park.
  • Professor Julie Poehlmann-Tynan and Elizabeth Sokora, University of Wisconsin-Madison.
  • ‘In-home video chat for children and their young parents’.
  • Lisa Morgan, Deputy Care Manager, Hillside Secure Children’s Home.

The seminar will be chaired by Professor Mike Maguire, University of South Wales.