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Keeping in Contact

The Scottish Prison Service recognises that children and families are hugely motivating factors that can influence behaviour change and is committed to working with families, community and voluntary sector partners in order to maintain meaningful family contact throughout a period of imprisonment.  We want to strengthen the relationship between the SPS and families affected by imprisonment to ensure that both prisoner and family receive the best possible support during this difficult time.

Family leaflets

We now have Standards for Encouraging Family Contact which details the minimum level of support that is now available in every establishment. These standards became operational on 1st April 2013 and include five key standards;


  •     Access
      SPS will offer opportunities for children and families to maintain contact with their relatives. 
  •     Communication
      SPS will provide information which is accessible and meets the needs of families. 
  •     Participation
      SPS will actively encourage families to participate at key stages of a relative’s sentence. 
  •     Respect
      SPS staff will treat every visitor as an individual, and with dignity and respect.
  •     Safety
      SPS will ensure families visiting a relative in prison do so in a safe and pleasant environment.

There are various ways of keeping in touch with a family member in custody.  You may write, visit and use the “email a prisoner” scheme.