04-05 of 2005, which deals with prison organization and the social reintegration of prisoners, contains provisions related to prisoners who have minor children. Paragraph 6 of article 16 allows for the postponement of carrying out a prison term against a convicted person for the benefit of a minor child if the other spouse is also in prison. The prison is to provide child care services and facilities with specially trained staff. As of preschool programs in accordance with GEF only one prison for women had a child care facility, however.
Australia Each of Australia’s six states and two mainland territories apply their own legislative frameworks in relation to the correctional facilities that they manage. Provision is made in the policies or legislation of all of these states and territories for the accommodation of children with their mother in prison. Assessment processes for determining the placement of a child in a custodial environment should include appropriate input from the relevant external agencies. The accommodation for primary care givers and their children should, wherever possible be domestic rather than custodial. While prisoners are responsible for the care of their children living in the prison, the Administering Department should take reasonable steps to ensure a safe environment for children.
Information on the age limits and numbers of places available for children to reside with their mothers in prison in each state and territory is provided below. Female detainees who are the caregivers of children up to the age of four years or who are pregnant may participate in the Women and Children Program. Following approval, children are placed with their caregiver in a women’s cottage at the prison. The New South Wales Mothers and Children’s Program has three components: a full-time residency program, occasional residency program, and release of the mother to serve her sentence in an approved environment away from a correctional center. In order for a child to reside full-time with his or her mother, he or she must be aged under six years and not attending school. 24-bed cottage to meet the needs of women with children in custody has been constructed at the Alice Springs Correctional Centre. Detailed procedures apply to the consideration of an application, and to the management of the mother and child who reside together in a facility.
The South Australia Department of Correctional Services issued an instruction in 1993 stating that provision may be made for a child to live with a parent in prison. 03 Annual Report, the Adelaide Women’s Prison has facilities to accommodate nine women with children under three years of age. In Tasmania, a prisoner may request approval for a child to live with the prisoner in the prison. The women’s prison in Tasmania has a seven-bed mother and baby unit. The program is available in the state’s two women’s prisons where mothers and their children are housed in dedicated facilities. In Western Australia, a detailed policy directive sets out the rules and procedures related to children residing in prisons with their mothers. For the residential programs in some prisons, the age at which a child’s residency must cease is twelve months.
However, in purpose-built facilities, the age limit is generally four years. The law provides for special facilities specifically designed to accommodate mothers with children. The same report notes, however, that there are often more than five mothers with children owing to prison overpopulation. Benin Beninese law appears to allow mothers to keep their young children with them in prison, although no special accommodation seems to be provided for such situations. It has been reported that there are approximately a hundred children under the age of five living with their mothers in Beninese prisons. According to official sources there are approximately two thousand children living in Bolivian prisons with their parents. Most of these children are younger than six years of age but there are many prisons where children older than six, mostly adolescents, are still living in prison with their parents.