Research into the successful reintegration and the role of family and friends in this process was done by the Quaker Council for European Affairs in May 2011. They highlight the importance of family support while the prisoner is getting back on his/her feet. Some of their findings are outlined below.
Prisoners’ family relationships are among the most important factors in their rehabilitation. A stable home environment can be a base of strength while a prisoner faces the challenges of finding a new job and adapting to a new lifestyle ‘on the outside’.

This is especially true when the prisoner in question has served a long sentence. Family contact is important because it can help to stabilise the prisoner on release. Families do this by offering practical support and reinforcement, but perhaps more importantly because they reinforce the prisoner’s motivation to stay out of prison and help them to achieve their goals.

Prisons must therefore facilitate contact between prisoners and their families, so that the socially isolating effects of prison are reduced. Unnecessary practical restrictions on family contact should be removed.

Most European countries surveyed do not monitor or track the average distance of prisoners from their families, though some countries have the explicit aim of keeping prisoners close to their homes where possible. This is important because it allows for visits and these visits keep the family relationships alive. Most countries allow prisoners to receive visitors once a week or more. Good practice in resettlement planning suggests that quality family contact can have a great impact even on serial reoffending.

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