A study of disabled children and child protection in Scotland - a hidden group?

Kirsten Stalker, Julie Taylor, Debi Fry, Alastair B.R. Stewart

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    4 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    This paper is based on analysis of data collected for a study, commissioned by the Scottish Government, which examined child protection work with disabled children. At a conceptual level, the paper draws on Goffman's frame analysis and on different models of disability. Focus groups were conducted with five Child Protection Committees (40 individuals) and semi-structured interviews with a further 21 practitioners from social work, education, health services, third sector organisations and the police. The findings show that, for various reasons, abuse of disabled children may go undetected. Where it is suspected, effective action does not always follow, for example, where practitioners over-empathise with parents. When child protection work is undertaken, disabled children may remain relatively invisible in terms of participation and professional focus. It is suggested that the ways in which practitioners and managers ‘frame’ disabled children has implications for how abuse is responded to and how well these children are protected. Participants also 'framed' disability in different ways, and it is suggested that a social relational model seems particularly applicable. In conclusion, in many respects disabled children experiencing abuse may remain absent from or to some extent hidden within child protection services in Scotland. While some creative work is taking place, considerable changes are required to make child protection services accessible to all disabled children, sensitive to their needs and respectful of their rights.
    LanguageEnglish
    Pages126-134
    Number of pages9
    JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
    Volume56
    Early online date24 Jul 2015
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Sep 2015

    Fingerprint

    Disabled Children
    child protection
    Scotland
    Group
    abuse
    disability
    Child Abuse
    Police
    Focus Groups
    Social Work
    Health Services
    Parents
    Organizations
    Interviews
    health service
    parents
    social work
    police
    Education
    manager

    Keywords

    • child protection
    • disabled children
    • abuse
    • frame analysis
    • Scotland
    • child protection services

    Cite this

    Stalker, Kirsten ; Taylor, Julie ; Fry, Debi ; Stewart, Alastair B.R. / A study of disabled children and child protection in Scotland - a hidden group?. In: Children and Youth Services Review. 2015 ; Vol. 56. pp. 126-134.
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    title = "A study of disabled children and child protection in Scotland - a hidden group?",
    abstract = "This paper is based on analysis of data collected for a study, commissioned by the Scottish Government, which examined child protection work with disabled children. At a conceptual level, the paper draws on Goffman's frame analysis and on different models of disability. Focus groups were conducted with five Child Protection Committees (40 individuals) and semi-structured interviews with a further 21 practitioners from social work, education, health services, third sector organisations and the police. The findings show that, for various reasons, abuse of disabled children may go undetected. Where it is suspected, effective action does not always follow, for example, where practitioners over-empathise with parents. When child protection work is undertaken, disabled children may remain relatively invisible in terms of participation and professional focus. It is suggested that the ways in which practitioners and managers ‘frame’ disabled children has implications for how abuse is responded to and how well these children are protected. Participants also 'framed' disability in different ways, and it is suggested that a social relational model seems particularly applicable. In conclusion, in many respects disabled children experiencing abuse may remain absent from or to some extent hidden within child protection services in Scotland. While some creative work is taking place, considerable changes are required to make child protection services accessible to all disabled children, sensitive to their needs and respectful of their rights.",
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    A study of disabled children and child protection in Scotland - a hidden group? / Stalker, Kirsten; Taylor, Julie; Fry, Debi; Stewart, Alastair B.R.

    In: Children and Youth Services Review, Vol. 56, 09.2015, p. 126-134.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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