Child Welfare Systems and Migrant Children: A Cross Country Study of Policies and Practice

By Marit Skivenes; Ravinder Barn et al. | Go to book overview

13
MIGRANT CHILDREN AND CHILD
WELFARE SYSTEMS:
A CONTESTED CHALLENGE

Ravinder Barn, Katrin Križ, Tarja Pösö, and Marit Skivenes

Children are in the midst of migration processes that are occurring due to economic crises, military conflicts, and natural disasters in many countries (UNICEF, 2009; Williamson, 2006). However, research rarely focuses on the challenges and problems that children may experience during migration, in the process of starting a new life, and after they and their families have settled in another society. This book explores how the child welfare systems of different countries in the global north perceive migrant children who are vulnerable, that is, at risk of abuse or neglect, and how they interact with these children. The chapters discuss children who migrate with their parents, as well as those who migrate alone, and children of parents who migrated. The aim of this book is to shed light on the situation of these children and compare the types of interventions and supports that child welfare systems provide for them. We explore the ideologies, policies, and responsibilities of child welfare systems in 11 countries as they work with migrant children who are in need of assistance or protection from harm. At the outset of this project, we identified five key themes in which we expected to find significant information about the book’s areas of interest: (1) law and policy, (2) organization, (3) training, (4) representation of migrant children, and (5) practice. In this concluding chapter, we focus on three areas. First, we present the main tendencies and the ways in which the disparate child welfare systems carry out their roles and responsibilities. Second, given

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