The fact that some women’s prisons are offering a nursery program is pretty cool. I mean, the child never did anything to deserve being separated from their mother, and Schwartzapfel was right; kids don’t know that they’re in prison, they just know that they’re treated with love and warmth from their mother. I like that the prisons are selective with who they let into the programs however. I can see how it might be ideal for a ‘criminal’ who maybe didn’t have access to proper care and hospitalization for labor and delivery would want in to the program, but because they are so selective, I can also see it deterring women from going to jail.
I believe it can also help as another type of therapy as well. The inmates can learn so much more about caring for someone else, and really develop themselves with the nursery better than they can with mandatory classes (I think?). This makes me wonder though, of male prisons. I wonder, if a man had kids, and was presented with the opportunity to witness the birth and be with them, waking up at night, feedings, changing diapers…. I wonder if it would have the same effect? Would the men want the nurseries? Would they want to be woken up every night with their child, playing peek-a-boo and kissing boo boo’s? Would it be the same kind of therapy for them? I feel like in most cases it would. I’d be very curious about really seeing what a difference it could make on male inmates as well.