10 Apr 2014 15:48:47.323
A new book co-authored by an academic from The University of Nottingham, proposes a radical rethink of our approach to child protection.
In ‘Re-imagining Child Protection: Towards humane social work with families’, which will be published on 14 April, the authors challenge the ways in which child-protection operates, particularly in relation to more deprived families.
The book is the collective effort of experts in the field of child protection across three universities: Kate Morris a Professor in Social Work from The University of Nottingham, Brid Featherstone, from the Open University and Susan White, from The University of Birmingham.
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Challenging child protection culture
With three decades of research and practice under their belts, the group seek to look at how to reform today’s child protection practices by focusing on ethical and humane approaches to families in tough situations.
The book challenges today’s child protection culture, which is often unfair to the more disadvantaged families, pushing for children’s early removal and adoption. Since the recent years’ increase in care applications, the book offers a timely new approach, trying to understand the difficulty of parenting in underprivileged contexts. Relationships with kin, neighbourhood and the surrounding community are seen as essential ingredients for a child’s successful upbringing.
Care and protection
Kate Morris says: “This book raises important questions about how we work with vulnerable families, about how social work understands and responds to the needs of children and families and seeks to begin a debate about new ways of working. It is published at a time of great challenges for social work, where providing services in a context of austerity with severe financial pressures places social work at the heart of debates about humane responses to need.
“It calls for family-minded humane practice where children are understood as relational beings, parents are recognised as people with needs and hopes and families as carrying extraordinary capacities for care and protection.”
The emphasis on empathy, relationships and humanity is a key element in reforming the existing child-protection system. As the sold-out launch event shows, the book is bound to become a must-read for experiences and new practitioners in the fields of social work, child protection, policy makers and managers.
1. Re-imagining child protection: Towards humane social work with families, by Brid Featherstone, Susan White, Kate Morris is published by Policy Press on 14 April 2014 price £21.99. It can be ordered at 20 per cent discount from the Policy Press website: http://www.policypress.co.uk/display.asp?ISB=9781447315810
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3. Policy Press (www.policypress.co.uk) is a leading social science publisher based at the University of Bristol, UK and is committed to publishing books that make a difference