Video Release: The ASFA Expanded Discretion Law and the Rights of Incarcerated Parents
The Coalition for Women Prisoners (CWP) and the Women in Prison Project (WIPP) work in partnership to facilitate and support the implementation of the Adoption and Safe Families Act Expanded Discretion law (ASFA), which provides an opportunity for parents who were incarcerated or in residential treatment to regain custody of their children from foster care beyond the normal 15-month timeframe. We won passage of this legislation in 2010, but many foster care agencies and courts are not using its provisions to promote reproductive justice for marginalized communities.
Our most recent efforts, in partnership with Echoes of Incarceration, have resulted in a series of videos created to educate the various stakeholders about the law. The videos, in which formerly incarcerated and other stakeholders prominently appear, provide clear and compelling explanations of the law and how it should be used. The videos will be distributed in correctional centers, legal aid offices, Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) and private child welfare agencies, law schools, schools of social work, and courts.
To learn about the obstacles to reunification incarcerated parents in New York and other states face, check out this illuminating article by Vikki Law in Truthout.
When Cassidy Green learned that she was pregnant, she and her husband didn’t discuss cribs, co-sleeping, or even diapers. Instead, they worried about more basic and immediate challenges, like whether Green would be able to spend more than a few days with her baby. Green was in prison, 9 years into a 15-year prison sentence [...]Read More
“Prison Within Prison: Voices of Women Held In Isolated Confinement in New York” is a collection of oral and visual observations from twenty women about their experiences being held in isolated confinement in New York’s women’s prisons and Rikers Island. They are advocates and leaders on a range of issues in the movement to end [...]Read More
WOMEN AND ISOLATED CONFINEMENT Women held in isolated confinement are subjected to dehumanizing treatment—treatment that makes it difficult for them to maintain their dignity, hygiene, nutrition and personal property. They can get in trouble for something as simple as attempting to talk to the person next to them. They are denied commissary privileges which provide [...]Read More