"The law cannot terminate bloodlines": Families and child welfare decisions
AbstractChild welfare professionals are called to make determinations that affect whether children can stay or reunify with their families. These decisions are framed by policies that inform and constrain their professional and personal understanding of risk and relationships. This manuscript explores themes related to children's relationships with their families that emerged from a qualitative study with 18 child welfare professionals, including judges, lawyers, and masters-level social workers who represent different constituencies in child welfare cases. It is supplemented by interviews with 6 child-welfare involved parents, all of them biological mothers. The majority of participants' believe that existing families are nearly always better caregivers to children than legally mandated ones. Existing families are perceived as more likely to love and be loved by their children, to protect children from harm, and to be superior to currently available foster care and alternative placements. Yet, participants perceive the policies to prefer substitute, legally created families over already existing families. Such policies leave child welfare unenviable position of having to work in ways contradicts their personal and professional judgment of what is best for the families and children they serve.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Children and Youth Services Review.
Volume (Year): 32 (2010)
Issue (Month): 5 (May)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/childyouth
Child welfare policy Reunification Foster care Adoption Family relationships Decision making;
You can help add them by filling out this form.
reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.