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Ever lived with a parent who was incarcerated

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For all sample children, JAILEV indicates whether the child ever lived with a parent or guardian who served time in jail or prison after the child was born.

JAILEV is part of the Child Stressful Life Events (SLE) section, which also asks:

  • Whether the child has ever been a victim of or witnessed violence in their neighborhood (VIOLENEV),
  • Whether the child ever lived with anyone mentally ill or severely depressed (MENTDEPEV), and
  • Whether the child ever lived with anyone with an alcohol or drug problem (ALCDRUGEV).

According to the 2019 Survey Description, these questions are part of the Rotating Core and are asked due to the association between stressful life events and health conditions that may persist into adulthood. The four questions were adapted from a set of eight questions on stressful life events which appear in the National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH). The Survey Description explains that the full set of questions is not asked as information about some other stressful life events can be gained through other NHIS questions and some were inappropriate to ask in a face-to-face interview.


This variable is completely comparable over time.


  • 2019: Sample children age 0-17.


  • 2019