Pub. date: 2005 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952514 | Print ISBN: 9780761927310 | Online ISBN: 9781412952514| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Prison nurseries are residential units within prisons in which young children of inmates reside, usually with their mothers. Although they are rare in the United States, prison nurseries are commonplace in women's prisons elsewhere throughout the world. A 1987 survey of 70 nations found that only four—Suriname, Liberia, the Bahamas, and the United States—did not allow pregnant inmates to keep their babies with them after they were born in prison. All but 14 nations permitted young children born before their mothers' incarceration to accompany them to prison. Prior to the 1950s, prison nurseries existed in many states, including California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Massachusetts, Maine, New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Virginia, and Wyoming. Some nurseries welcomed babies born prior to their mothers' incarceration as well as those born during imprisonment. For example, inmates at the Connecticut Women's Prison in Niantic gave birth to 47 infants in 1937. They joined 56 ...