Child Protection Systems: International trends and orientations

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Oxford Scholarship Online

This book builds upon and advances the comparative analysis of child protection systems that was conducted in the mid-1990s and presented in the ground-breaking book Combatting Child Abuse: International Perspectives and Trends. Chapters provide a detailed analysis of how the systems have changed during the period with a particular focus upon:

  • What are the criteria which define child maltreatment?
  • Who is responsible for reporting suspected cases of maltreatment?
  • What are the processes for enquiring into the reports?
  • How are the allegations of maltreatment substantiated, and what is the state’s response?

Each chapter also considers two broader and key questions:

  • What have been the major issues and trends since during the period?
  • What have been the significant changes in the wider political and social contexts and how have these influenced child welfare and child protection?

It becomes clear that all the countries have witnessed considerable change, and the conclusion summarizes the main themes. While there are important similarities in the changes experienced, there are also important differences.The chapters identify important developments in the two alternative orientations to the problem identified in Combatting Child Abuse: The child protection and family service orientations and the emergence of a new and significant child-focused orientation.

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