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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2006

Beth R. Crisp and Pam Green Lister

The purpose of this research is to explore nurses' perceptions of their current skills and knowledge and training needs to identify cases of child abuse and their…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research is to explore nurses' perceptions of their current skills and knowledge and training needs to identify cases of child abuse and their understanding of their roles and responsibilities in relation to child abuse. Nurses, including health visitors and midwives, have been recognised as having a key role in the protection and care of children, especially in identifying and referring possible cases of child abuse and neglect.

Design/methodology/approach

A structured questionnaire concerning knowledge and training needs in child protection was sent to all nurses employed in a Scottish NHS Primary Care Trust (approximately 1,900), of whom one‐third (667) responded. These survey results were complemented by semi‐structured interviews with 99 members of the nursing workforce.

Findings

Almost all training in child protection had been confined to health visitors, resulting in the Trust giving an implicit message that child protection is not a role in which other nurses need have any involvement. In general, those nurses who both worked with children and had involvement in child protection issues, considered themselves to be most in need of knowledge around child protection work, to have the greatest level of knowledge and to consider further training a priority.

Research limitations/implications

Nurses who had an interest or involvement in child protection work were more likely to participate in the research, which may have biased the results.

Practical implications

Training strategies need to address the diversity of nurses' involvements in child protection work through the development of training programmes which are appropriate for different workplaces and different occupational groupings. Nurses in some settings will need to be first convinced they have the potential to play an important role in protecting children from abuse and neglect.

Originality/value

Many NHS Trusts have in recent years introduced mandatory training in child protection for all staff in contact with children. However, previously published studies have considered training issues only in respect of nurses identified as working directly with children, whereas this study explores child protection issues for all nurses employed in a primary care NHS Trust.

Details

Health Education, vol. 106 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0965-4283

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2006

Judith Masson

This article examines the use of emergency intervention for child protection in England by the police and social services to establish when and why powers are used and…

Abstract

This article examines the use of emergency intervention for child protection in England by the police and social services to establish when and why powers are used and what subsequently happens. It is based on two studies in England between 1998 and 2004: 1) The Police Protection Study (PP), which examined the use of police protection through a survey of 16 (of the 43) police forces in England and Wales and record reading (311 cases) and interviews (57) in eight forces. 2) The Emergency Protection Orders (EPO) study, which examined EPO applications though a national survey of courts, an analysis of cases (86) from six social services departments, and interviews (78) with social workers, lawyers, court staff and magistrates. There are wide variations in the use of emergency powers. The police act independently and in response to social workers' requests. Social workers resort to emergency powers in well‐known, serious cases when parents refuse co‐operation. EPOs are followed by care proceedings.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 1 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2008

Rachel Filinson, Claudine McCreadie, Janet Askham and Dinah Mathew

The parallels between child abuse and adult abuse have been frequently noted as public awareness of both has increased in recent decades. Both can involve the concealed…

Abstract

The parallels between child abuse and adult abuse have been frequently noted as public awareness of both has increased in recent decades. Both can involve the concealed victimisation of a weaker family member, for both interventions are difficult to implement because practitioners are loath to intrude into the privacy of the family and risk causing harm, and combating abuse of either type demands multi‐agency working. Significant differences between the two abuse constituencies have also been stressed, namely that adults are not invariably dependents reliant for care on the persons mistreating them and have the autonomy to resist efforts to intervene on their behalf.

Details

The Journal of Adult Protection, vol. 10 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1466-8203

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Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2014

Lucinda Ferguson

This article explores the neglected issue of the overrepresentation in the child protection system of children from ethnic, cultural, religious, racial, and linguistic…

Abstract

This article explores the neglected issue of the overrepresentation in the child protection system of children from ethnic, cultural, religious, racial, and linguistic minorities. It focuses on the accommodation of children’s diverse backgrounds within the s 31(2) threshold and s1 “best interests” stages of intervention under the Children Act 1989. First, it introduces the ethnic child protection penalty as a new tool for capturing the complex nature of overrepresentation of these children. Second, it proposes a framework for understanding the judicial approach in higher court decisions on the current extent and nature of accommodation. Third, it employs the penalty concept to help explain why case law analysis reveals difficulties with the current factor-based approach, whereas empirical research suggests generally satisfactory accommodation in practice. It concludes by proposing a contextualized framework for decision-making in relation to child protection.

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Article
Publication date: 23 May 2020

Israa A. El Husseiny, Amira Gamal El-Din and Khaled Zakaria Amin

This paper aims to fill a gap in the existing literature by shedding the light on four main issues. First, the relationship between child-at-risk protection and…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to fill a gap in the existing literature by shedding the light on four main issues. First, the relationship between child-at-risk protection and sustainable development and the key factors contributing to the failure or success of child-at-risk protection systems. Second, the main characteristics and limitations of the current institutional arrangements of the child-at-risk protection system in Egypt. Third, the budget allocations to child protection-relevant entities in Egypt. Fourth, the way forward to enhance the effectiveness of the child-at-risk protection system in Egypt.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology used in this paper is of a qualitative nature. The authors relied on desk review of the international and national reports (including the un-published ones) and the relevant literature on the topic. Additionally, the authors reviewed the relevant laws and regulations and analyzed the fiscal data extracted from Egypt’s State budget. Also, semi-structured interviews were conducted with some officials from the different governmental entities covered by the study.

Findings

From the institutional perspective, the authors find that the current child-at-risk protection system in Egypt needs effective institutional arrangements, as it is attributed with the limited activation of the child protection committees, lack of coordination mechanisms and overlapping mandates with regards to case management. Hence, the authors propose two institutional approaches that could help in enhancing the performance of the current system. While the first approach has decentralized nature, the other is centralized. From the fiscal perspective, the authors analyze the trend and composition of the budget allocations to the child protection-relevant entities in Egypt. They show that such allocations are relatively small especially when items not related to child protection are excluded.

Originality/value

The paper analyzes the main characteristics and limitations of the current institutional arrangements of the child-at-risk protection system in Egypt. Moreover, it proposes two alternative institutional approaches to deal with such limitations and enhance the effectiveness of the current system. The paper also provides an analysis of the budget allocations to the child protection-relevant entities in Egypt. These issues have not been addressed sufficiently in the Egyptian context.

Details

Review of Economics and Political Science, vol. 6 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2356-9980

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Book part
Publication date: 29 February 2008

Nathan Harris and Jennifer Wood

This chapter is interested in the challenge of governing beyond crime, surveillance and control. It argues for the need to re-imagine the governance of security in ways…

Abstract

This chapter is interested in the challenge of governing beyond crime, surveillance and control. It argues for the need to re-imagine the governance of security in ways designed to both build and enrol the capacities of different actors. The authors draw on regulatory theory and the ideas developed in the areas of ‘responsive regulation’ and ‘nodal governance’ to explore the opportunities for, and the challenges associated with designing governance institutions and processes that serve to de-centre hierarchy, command and interventionism as essential rationalities and practices. Its empirical focus is on the case of child protection, where the authors argue for the importance of nurturing the capacities of families and communities to govern both beyond and in tandem with hierarchical modalities. It is hoped that the theoretical issues raised and the agenda articulated can be engaged with across a variety of empirical domains.

Details

Surveillance and Governance: Crime Control and Beyond
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-7623-1416-4

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Book part
Publication date: 8 November 2019

Lars Alberth

This paper analyses how social workers in the German child protection system rhetorically frame their cases, and how their rhetoric defines its categorical labels…

Abstract

This paper analyses how social workers in the German child protection system rhetorically frame their cases, and how their rhetoric defines its categorical labels corresponding to positions of gender and generation: to what degree are mothers considered as perpetrators and children as victims? Seventy case narrations of social workers on the frontline are analysed regarding the rhetorical idioms they applied. The results show that violence is an irrelevant interpretive framework for the social problems at work in child protection. Instead, irresponsible mothers and their limited agencies are staged front and centre. Categories of limited agency serve as rhetorical devices for the social workers to justify diverse decisions ranging from implementing interventions to terminating the professional-client relationship due to the labelling of the mother as mentally ill. As the rhetorical idiom of unreason does not operate with categories of perpetration and victimization, equivalences for the labels of the practical objectives of victimization are analysed. Consequently, the responsibility of the mother is deflected as her limited agency is seen as a product of troubling conditions. In turn, children are either ignored as victims or even treated as a troubling condition for the mothers’ limited agency. This may lead to the blacking out of the adverse consequences of child abuse and neglect as well as of possible resources for the children to avoid or prevent violent situations. In this way, child protection helps the reproduction of the generational order, which is the basis for child abuse and neglect.

Details

Victim, Perpetrator, or What Else?
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-335-8

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Book part
Publication date: 8 November 2019

Andreas Jud and Peter Voll

Both research and child protection practice are still far away from having uniform definitions of violence against children. The different disciplines involved in the…

Abstract

Both research and child protection practice are still far away from having uniform definitions of violence against children. The different disciplines involved in the sectors of national child protection systems rely on separate discourses and terms; definitions are sometimes rather general or implicit, and operationalizations of important elements are rare. The various terms in use – child maltreatment, child abuse and neglect, child endangerment, children at risk, children in need, etc. – speak of the variety, not only of concepts, but also of practices. With respect to the latter, definitional issues are also issues of the scope and thresholds of intervention. This chapter provides an overview of major terms and definitional approaches to violence against children and identifies eminent differences between them. Findings from several studies on the Swiss child protection system, including the first multi-sectorial national survey on agency responses to child maltreatment, illustrate how professionals use definitions and the consequences of having multiple definitional concepts for documenting reported cases. We conclude by advocating for a consensus-based interdisciplinary process of developing shared definitions of violence against children.

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Article
Publication date: 12 March 2010

June Thoburn

This article is an extended version of an ‘experts’ briefing' commissioned to inform senior child welfare managers in English local authorities and voluntary agencies…

Abstract

This article is an extended version of an ‘experts’ briefing' commissioned to inform senior child welfare managers in English local authorities and voluntary agencies about the available evidence to inform the provision of effective services in complex child protection cases. It starts by noting how differences in the approach to service provision in different jurisdictions affect both the nature of research conducted and its transferability across national boundaries. It then summarises the characteristics both of parents who are likely to maltreat their children and also of the children most likely to be maltreated. The factors that make some families ‘hard to engage’ or ‘hard to help/change’ are then discussed, as are the essential elements of effective professional practice in child protection. Particular attention is paid to effective approaches to helping families and young people who are hard to identify or engage.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

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Article
Publication date: 8 July 2021

Simone Collier and India Bryce

Adverse childhood experiences that are consistently experienced over a sustained period of time throughout childhood result in an accumulation of childhood adversity…

Abstract

Purpose

Adverse childhood experiences that are consistently experienced over a sustained period of time throughout childhood result in an accumulation of childhood adversity, which is often referred to in the literature as cumulative harm. This paper aims to closely examine statutory child protection practice, which favours an episodic and incident-focused approach to assessing risk and harm, failing to account for the evaluation of the accumulation of adversity and harm, commonly experienced by children exposed to maltreatment. The paper defines an existing gap in practice frameworks to adequately identify and respond to the accumulation of adversity.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing on practice experiences in Queensland Australia, the paper examines service delivery responses to cumulative harm in the context of the Intensive Family Support model of service delivery.

Findings

Within current frameworks for child protection service delivery, there is no method of assessing the diverse and cumulative effects of ongoing chronic child maltreatment and adversity, despite research confirming that cumulative harm very often co-occurs with other child protection concerns. To effectively and collaboratively intervene in matters of chronic and cumulative abuse and neglect, practitioners and stakeholders must be guided by frameworks and assessments that accurately recognise and acknowledge the impact of ongoing exposure to adverse experiences and maltreatment.

Research limitations/implications

The need for a valid and reliable assessment method that draws together all elements contributing to the chronic maltreatment experience for a child and family: multiplicity, diversity and severity.

Social implications

Practice solutions tailored to each child’s specific cumulative experiences of adversity and maltreatment will promote better social, emotional and health outcomes across the lifespan.

Originality/value

This paper highlights a significant gap in assessment and practice frameworks and advances the impetus for cumulative harm to be proactively integrated into social care and service delivery.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

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