The data and the explanations is part of a Department of Justice special report. Below is the introduction and a link to the full .PDF
“…..An estimated 809,800 prisoners of the 1,518,535 held in the nation’s prisons at midyear 2007 were parents of minor children, or children under age 18. Parents held in the nation’s prisons—52% of state inmates and 63% of federal inmates—reported having an estimated 1,706,600 minor children, accounting for 2.3% of the U.S. resident population under age 18. Unless otherwise specified in this report, the word parent refers to state and federal prisoners who reported having minor children. The word children refers to youth under age 18. Between 1991 and midyear 2007, parents held in state and federal prisons increased by 79% (357,300 parents). Children of incarcerated parents increased by 80% (761,000 children), during this period (figure 1). The most rapid growth in the number of parents held in the nation’s prisons and their children occurred between 1991 and 1997 (both up 44%). From 1997 to midyear 2007, the number of parents and children continued to grow, but at a slower pace (both up 25%).
The findings in this report are based on the latest data collected through personal interviews with prisoners participating in the Bureau of Justice Statistics’ (BJS) 2004 Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities (SISFCF), which is comprised of two separate surveys. One survey is conducted in state adult correctional facilities and the other is conducted in federal correctional facilities. Estimates presented in this report may not be comparable to previously published reports. See Incarcerated Parents and Their Minor Children at http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/ abstract/iptc.htm.
Follow this link for full .pdf: parants in prison with children