Why multiples matter: Reconceptualising the population referred to child and family social workers

Trevor Spratt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Building on a body of previous research by the author and colleagues in relation to multiple adverse childhood experiences (MACE), this paper addresses the question of ‘why multiples matter’ in relation to issues of cumulative adversity. Illustrative evidence is drawn from three research domains, epidemiology, multiple services use and child maltreatment to demonstrate the collective weight of evidence to suggest a targeting of those children and families experiencing multiple adversities to diminish the effects of such adversities realised across the life-course. Whilst the history of previous largely unsuccessful attempts to widen the range of children prioritised for intervention by child and family social workers might lead to pessimism in relation to their ability to respond to a MACE informed public health agenda, there are clear possibilities for developing agency structures, assessment tools and social work practices directed toward meeting the needs of those sub populations already prioritised by social workers: namely Children in Need, Children in need of Protection and Looked after Children.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1574-1591
Number of pages18
JournalBritish Journal of Social Work
Volume42
Issue number8
Early online date22 Nov 2011
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2012

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