The Effect of Incarceration on Father’s Health

SSW Investigator(s):

Marah A. Curtis, PI

Funding Source:

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Connections Grant

Project Description:

This one-year Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Connections grant of $55,000 was awarded to examine the effect of incarceration on fathers’ health utilizing the nationally representative Fragile Families and Child Well-Being dataset.

Health is a vital component in family well-being often overlooked for low-income, urban fathers.  Labor market opportunities, parenting tasks, and familial living all are impacted by the ability of both parents to function in their assigned roles.  Fathers with poor health are more likely to have labor market difficulties and excessive expenses and may be forced to make trade-offs between medications and other goods.

These fathers are often part of vulnerable families and communities with little resources who are also eligible for very few, if any, public benefits.  Understanding the effects of incarceration on the health of a mostly low-income group of urban fathers will provide policy relevant information about a particularly vulnerable, often underserved population.