In this briefing paper we shine a spotlight on the issues faced by women who have contact with both the criminal justice and children’s social care systems during pregnancy and the first two years of their child’s life.
We outline the context, highlight key evidence, share our recommendations, and present powerful contributions from our Lived Experience Team who have experienced this ‘dual contact’.
We believe that significant change is needed in order to improve the experiences and outcomes of women with this dual contact; and to prevent contact with one of these systems leading to otherwise avoidable contact with the other.
This Spotlight paper acts as a bridge between two Birth Companions publications - the Birth Charter for women in Prison from 2016, and the Birth Charter for women with involvement from children's social care from 2023.
Both of Birth Companions' Birth Charters are of value to professionals working across prisons, probation, maternity, primary care, mental health, social care, domestic abuse, substance misuse, housing and beyond.