Parental Substance Misuse and Child Welfare

Parental Substance Misuse and Child Welfare

Parental Substance Misuse and Child Welfare

Parental Substance Misuse and Child Welfare

Synopsis

"Focusing on the needs of children of substance misusing parents and the dilemmas faced by professionals working with them, this comprehensive book brings together for the first time theoretical and practice issues for all those involved with the crossover between responses to drug and alcohol problems and child welfare. Describing the effects of substance misuse on 'good enough' parenting and attachment (and taking into account theories about substance use), the authors analyse the issues facing children, including the impact on psychological and emotional development. Emphasising the importance of developing holistic approaches, involving both child care and drug and alcohol agencies as well as families, this book presents a practical model for risk assessment and intervention that balances the 'competing' needs of parents and their children. It is an essential resource for all those working or training to work in the fields of child welfare, substance misuse, health, education and criminal justice." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Excerpt

Jane Aldgate

Protecting children from maltreatment is a fundamental aim of child welfare services in the UK. How that maltreatment is defined remains a shifting sand, dictated by many factors and reflecting contemporary knowledge and attitudes of the time. The last twenty years have seen major steps forward in the understanding of child maltreatment and more importantly, of its impact on children throughout their childhood and beyond. The Children Act 1989 took an important step forward in moving the child maltreatment agenda from one which was preoccupied with uncovering abuse of different kinds: physical, sexual, emotional and neglect, to one which asked practitioners to shift their focus towards identifying the impact of that maltreatment on children. Such a move was assisted by the principles underpinning the Children Act 1989, which recognised the diversity of influences that help shape children's development, including children themselves.

Our understanding of significant harm and its prevention revived several key theoretical perspectives: children are individuals with unique potential; children thrive when they grow up in the context of nourishing food, warmth, physical nurture and enduring loving relationships with significant adults. Children's lives embrace many domains beyond that of their relationships with their parents or immediate carers. This includes school, peers, siblings and a positive community. The unique environment that makes up the experience of each individual child provides a constellation of factors which are often delicately balanced against one another. It would be unreasonable to expect any child to have a perfect . . .

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