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Reflections on 'governing the family': the close relationship between child protection and social work in advanced Western societies – the example of England

Parton, Nigel (2012) Reflections on 'governing the family': the close relationship between child protection and social work in advanced Western societies – the example of England. Families, Relationships and Societies, 1 (1). pp. 87-101. ISSN 20467435

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Abstract

The purpose of this article is to critically reflect on recent developments and debates about child protection policy and practice in advanced Western societies, with particular reference to England. It includes a discussion of the scandal associated with the death of 'Baby Peter' and the political reactions to it, together with an analysis of the Munro Review of Child Protection. In the process it considers why the profession of social work is continually subject to criticism in child protection work but, at the same time, continues to be entrusted with playing the central role in it. It is argued that a major reason for this is that social work plays a key role in 'governing the family' in advanced Western societies where, while it is important that children are protected from 'significant harm', it is also important that the privacy of the family is not seen as being undermined. Social work expertise is key to maintaining this fine balance and mediating between the various tensions involved.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN101 Great Britain
R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics > RJ101 Child Health. Child health services
Schools: School of Human and Health Sciences
School of Human and Health Sciences > Centre for Applied Childhood Studies
School of Human and Health Sciences > Centre for Research in the Social Sciences
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Depositing User: Sara Taylor
Date Deposited: 31 Jul 2012 09:00
Last Modified: 31 Jul 2012 09:00
URI: http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/id/eprint/14417

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