• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This book offers an authoritative overview of child care policy and practice in the UK. It covers assessment and family support services, understanding child maltreatment and protection, the care of looked after children, including the contribution of adoption, foster, and residential care, services for those leaving care and barriers facing disabled children and their families.

The book reflects the complexity and contested nature of children's needs, rights, and interests and relationships between family and state. It analyzes relevant debates and research and highlights practice issues and dilemmas. Readers are also directed to sources of further information on topics they may wish to explore in more depth. At the end of each chapter, there is guidance for further reading, resources for practice and questions for discussion.

Intended Audience

The ...

Understanding Child Maltreatment: ‘Causes’ and Consequences
Understanding child maltreatment: ‘Causes’ and consequences

In this chapter, we examine what might be termed the ‘knowledge base’ for child maltreatment, which in broad terms has focused on four main areas: measurement; ‘causes’ of maltreatment; its consequences; and the effectiveness of intervention. All of these, however, are dependent upon issues of definition and it is with these that we start. Despite the expanding concept of maltreatment described in the previous chapter, the four main categories of physical abuse, neglect, sexual abuse and emotional abuse remain central.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating, or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the ...

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