Family With Father In Jail Sounds Off on New Sesame Street Puppet

June 18, 2013 Updated Jun 18, 2013 at 8:10 PM EDT


June 18, 2013 Updated Jun 18, 2013 at 8:10 PM EDT

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) - The number of children with a parent behind bars is on the rise. Almost 1 in 28 kids have a mom or dad who is incarcerated, which is higher than the number of children who have a mom or dad deployed.

Now sesame street is tackling the issue, introducing a new puppet named "Alex", whose father is in jail.

Alex is encouraged to talk about his feelings and he is told it is perfectly normal to be sad, angry, and confused.

One local woman, whose husband is currently serving a life sentence for murder, says she is glad the show is helping to remove stigmas.

"There are a lot of children out here, who have a family member who is incarcerated and people need to deal with it and I think Sesame Street is the best place to get that done," said Sharae Green of Buffalo.

Some are speaking out against the new character on Sesame Street. One blogger wrote "congratulations, America on making it almost normal to have a parent who is in prison".