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SOUTH DAKOTA Prison & Criminal Justice Discussions Topics and conversations dealing with the State of South Dakota - Department of Corrections, Criminal Justice System, Prisoner & Family Support, Prison Visitation, Prison Mail & Phones, News & Information, etc.

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Old 09-11-2004, 07:06 AM
Phil in Paris Phil in Paris is offline
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Default Mother-Infant Programs South Dakota Women's Prison

The majority of incarcerated women have children and most of the inmate-mothers regain the responsibility for the care and support of their children upon their release from prison. The enforced separation of the mother and child usually creates distress for both the child and the parent. Because of the importance in the parent-child bond, the South Dakota Department of Corrections has several programs in place to help the bond between female inmates and their children.

Inmates and juveniles committed to the custody and care of the Department of Corrections are required to complete a parenting class. The class utilizes the BoysTown Common Sense parenting curricculum that deals with child behaviors from age 0-18 and TOTS or Bright Start Parenting curricculum for children ages 0-3. The TOTS curricculum is designed to help parents understand their child's needs and development.

A female inmate who comes into the prison system pregnant may be eligible to participate in the Mother-Infant program. In this program, the inmate who gives birth while incarcerated is allowed to keep the child at the South Dakota Women's Prison for up to 30 days. In order to participate, inmates must have first completed a parenting class. The infant and mother are housed in an area away from the general prison population. Permanent placement options are evaluated for the baby with family and the Department of Social Services.

The Mothers Making Memories program began in 1999. The Pierre Area Reading Council (PARC) assists inmates in reading books to their children onto audio tape. The books and tapes are then sent to the inmate's child/children so that the child can either read along or simply hear their mother read to them in an effort to reinforce the parent/child relationship. The PARC picks up the cost of the tapes, books and postage for the infant children.

The Mother Goose Program is a joint venture of the South Dakota Department of Education and Cultural Affairs, South Dakota State Library, South Dakota Head Start and South Dakota Discovery Center & Aquarium. Female inmates attend classes that focus on helping them introduce and encourage math and science skills to children ages 4-7. Inmates are allowed to keep and send home all of the books and materials used in the class.

The Parent and Children Together (P.A.C.T.) program at the South Dakota Women’s Prison is an extended visitation program available for inmate mothers and their children. The primary goal of the P.A.C.T. program is to enable the incarcerated mother to have her minor children with her in prison for a weekend visit once each month, in addition to the regular visiting hours. The P.A.C.T. visits are intended to alleviate some of the familial stress associated with the mother’s incarceration, create a better understanding of the parent role, and provide the opportunity of the inmate mother to maintain some direct responsibility for the care of her children. Inmates must apply for a P.A.C.T. visit and have their application approved by the P.A.C.T. coordinator in advance of the visit. A maximum of two children per weekend is allowed. P.A.C.T. weekends are usually the third weekend of the month, unless a holiday falls on that weekend.

For more on the P.A.C.T. program, click here.
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Old 09-17-2005, 06:56 PM
nandy5 nandy5 is offline
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I will soon be serving time at the SD women's prison. I am wondering is a federal inmate would also qualify for P.A.C.T. program and if you do qualify how long you have to wait.
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Old 09-20-2005, 04:03 AM
Phil in Paris Phil in Paris is offline
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Hi Nandy and welcome to PTO and the SD forum.

I'm sorry I don't have the answer to your question. But I'm not quite sure I understand everything: are you gonna be a federal inmate ?? If so, why would you be sent to SDWP ???

Phil
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Old 09-21-2005, 01:00 AM
nandy5 nandy5 is offline
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Yes, I'll be serving Federal time in the SD state prison. My Probation officer put in a request to the BOP and luckily they were okay with it. This was the closest to home I guess there's only about 15 other females that are serving Federal time there also. I'm from MN.
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Old 09-21-2005, 05:11 AM
Phil in Paris Phil in Paris is offline
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Hiya Nandy

Well, I'm happy they send you close to home.

To answer your question, I still don't know (I'm the helpful type of guy ) BUT if I were you, I would post your question in the federal forum, where there's a bunch of very smart people !!

Please keep me updated.

Phil
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