Figures regarding the extent to which abusive and neglectful families also have substance abuse problems, and vice versa, are complex and confusing. While specific studies vary considerably for methodological and other reasons, the bottom line is that a very significant portion of the child welfare caseload involves families with substance abuse
The child welfare system most commonly perceives substance abuse as causing abuse or neglect of children. However, research is also beginning to show that child abuse, particularly sexual abuse, is a common precursor of substance abuse (Dembo et al, 1997; National Research Council, 1993). The early initiation of substance use is a risk factor
Blending Perspectives and Building Common Ground. How are families with child maltreatment problems different from other substance abuse treatment clients?
Data from SAMHSA's evaluation of grant initiatives to provide residential substance abuse treatment for pregnant women and women with children indicate that female substance abuse treatment clients who have ever had children removed from the home by child protective services tend to be older than other clients, have more children, and have more ot
Blending Perspectives and Building Common Ground. How are families with substance abuse problems different from other child welfare clients?
Few studies directly compare child welfare clients with substance abuse problems to other child welfare clients. Analyses of the Children's Bureau's National Study of Protective, Preventive and Reunification Services conducted expressly for this report found significant differences between child welfare clients with substance abuse problems and
Blending Perspectives and Building Common Ground. How many families with substance abuse problems have contact with the child welfare system?
As discussed above, there are approximately 1.3 million parents with problem levels of illicit drug use (and many more alcoholic parents) who are living with children younger than age 18. These figures do not include children in foster care (because children in foster care are not living in their parents' households and are thus not picked up in
Most lay persons equate child welfare with foster care, although only a small minority of families with substantiated or indicated child abuse or neglect complaints have children placed in foster care -- 16 percent in 1996 (HHS/CB, 1998d). The remainder either are served while remaining at home, or child welfare workers have determined that no s
If a child and family is to be monitored by or receive services from the child welfare system following an investigation, the child welfare agency opens a child welfare case with the family. About half the children with open child welfare cases are in foster care, while the other half receive services while remaining in their parents' care (HHS/
In 1996, child protective services (CPS) agencies received more than 2 million reports of alleged child abuse and neglect involving more than 3 million children. CPS staff conducted approximately 1.6 million investigations of these reports and found evidence to substantiate that more than 970,000 children had been victims of child abuse and negl
Blending Perspectives and Building Common Ground. How many of the families involved with the child welfare system have substance abuse problems?
For decades child welfare staff have recognized that substance abuse is common in the families they serve (Fanshel, 1975). Studies have long shown that parents with substance abuse problems are more likely than other parents to maltreat their children (Famularo et al, 1986; Jaudes et al, 1995; Kelleher et al, 1994). The wide variety of figures
Blending Perspectives and Building Common Ground. How many children live with substance abusing parents?
The child welfare system serves children who come to its attention as the result of abuse and neglect reports. These children, however, are a small fraction of those who live in households in which a parent has a serious alcohol or drug problem. Data from the 1996 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse (NHSDA) reveal that an estimated 8.3 mil
The language authorizing this Report to Congress specifically required that we describe the extent and scope of the problem of substance abuse among families involved with the child welfare system. In this chapter we review data available from a variety of sources. The data available represent different and often conflicting numbers and patter
It is now generally recognized that a community-wide approach to the prevention of child maltreatment is the most promising technique for reducing its incidence and prevalence. Since child maltreatment is such a multivariate phenomenon, the resources of many different professional disciplines, as well as the resources of neighborhoods and commun
As noted above, it is difficult to isolate the factors that lead to abuse. It is also hard to classify the personality characteristics of abusers. Attempts to identify such characteristics have produced inconsistent and contradictory results, largely because many factors interact to produce the occurrence of child maltreatment (English, 1995).
Beyond the immediate physical injuries children may suffer, child abuse and neglect can also have longer lasting impacts across the developmental spectrum. The effects of chronic neglect are especially significant for later social and emotional functioning. Individual child characteristics, such as temperament and intelligence, may mediate the
Emotional maltreatment includes acts of commission or omission by the parents or other persons responsible for the child's care that have caused serious behavioral, cognitive, emotional, or mental disorders. This can include extreme or bizarre forms of punishment, such as torture or confinement of a child in a dark closet, or more subtle forms o
Reliability and Validity of the National Incidence of Child Abuse and Neglect Study Conducted by Westat Associates in 1988: Methodological Review
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Reliability and Validity of the National Incidence of Child Abuse and Neglect Study Conducted by Westat Associates in 1988: Methodological Review Dr. Deborah Daro, Dr. Elizabeth D. Jones and Karen McCurdy National Committee for Prevention of Child Abuse August 1989 PDF Version:
Sexual abuse includes a wide variety of behaviors, including fondling a child's genitals, intercourse, rape, sodomy, exhibitionism, and commercial exploitation through prostitution or the production of pornographic materials. According to the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA, section 111(4)), "the term 'sexual abuse' includes: (
n the most general sense, child neglect is characterized by failure to provide for the child's basic needs, including food, clothing, shelter, supervision, and/or medical care. Neglect covers a range of behaviors and is difficult to define. It can be confounded by differences in cultural norms between families and the child protective service
Physical abuse is characterized by physical injury (for example, bruises and fractures), resulting from punching, beating, kicking, biting, burning or otherwise physically harming a child. Although the injury is not an accident, the parents or caretaker may not have intended to hurt the child. The injury may have resulted from too much discipl
The first step in preventing and treating child abuse and neglect effectively is to reach a common understanding of the definition of the phenomenon and its causes. Unfortunately, the field lacks consistent definitions and faces difficulty in developing valid instruments to identify and assess maltreatment. The very nature of child maltreatmen