Bereavement Behind Bars: Prison and the Grieving Process

Hunt, Katie (2021) Bereavement Behind Bars: Prison and the Grieving Process. Prison Service Journal, 254 . pp. 17-23. ISSN 0300-3558

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Bereavement Behind Bars: Prison and the Grieving Process
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Prisoners experience bereavement at a much higher rate than the general population and are likely to have suffered a ‘catalogue of losses’ both prior to and as part of their sentence. Bereavements and other traumas, including imprisonment, typically trigger a grief response which, if it not acknowledged and supported, can lead to disenfranchised grief. Disenfranchised grief refers to a hidden sorrow arising from a loss that is not acknowledged by society. The griever or their loss may not be validated by those around them. Feelings of mourning are therefore compounded by a sense of alienation and wrongness, a sense that we are alone and unsupported in our suffering, and perhaps ought not to feel as we do. This can have severe mental and physical health consequences and can impact on reoffending risk. Despite this, there are very few services targeted towards helping inmates with grief, compared to, say, rehabilitation programmes for addiction, domestic violence, or offending behaviour.

Keywords:Prisons, Bereavement, Grief
Subjects:B Subjects allied to Medicine > B940 Counselling
M Law > M211 Criminal Law
L Social studies > L560 Probation/After Care
Divisions:College of Social Science > Lincoln Law School
ID Code:44888
Deposited On:25 Jun 2021 12:37

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