Illinois eyes help for inmates' children
May 28,2007 00:00 by UPI

CHICAGO - Community groups in Chicago, pairing with Illinois politicians, are trying to tackle the increasing problems facing the children of prison inmates.

Many officials within the Illinois prison system have applauded the move, calling it a major necessity in a city where an estimated 90,000 children are dealing with an imprisoned or paroled parent, The Washington Post said Monday.

"I'm so grateful they put a face on this issue," said Roberta Fews, an official with the Illinois Department of Corrections. "We can't punish the children because their parent made a few bad decisions. We don't want to see the child go down the same path."

Among the proposals aimed at battling the rising problem is increased financial support for such disadvantaged kids, longer visiting hours at state prisons and a reduction in the cost of prison-based phone calls.

Yet the movement also would be focused on making such children and their families aware of the current supportive measures already in place, the Post reported.

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