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In the Child's Best Interests: Strategies Workers Use to Make Supervised Contact with Non-Residential Parents a Positive Experience for Children

Burton, Judith A. (2003) In the Child's Best Interests: Strategies Workers Use to Make Supervised Contact with Non-Residential Parents a Positive Experience for Children. In Social Change in the 21st Century, 21 November 2003, Queensland University of Technology, brisbane.

Abstract

The principle of the child’s best interests is said to be central to any work with children and their families. How practitioners define and enact this principle however, depends in large part on the kind of service they are providing. This paper reports research with practitioners in a Queensland children’s contact service [CCS]. Workers were asked what the notion of the child’s best interests meant for them and how they identified and acted in children’s interests. The focus here is on three strategies or sets of practices they saw as essential: effectively engaging all service participants, facilitating positive parent-child interaction and encouraging children’s participation in decision making. Some practitioners expressed dilemmas around working to promote children’s interests while also achieving aims related to parents, in particular providing a neutral environment where parents could re-establish a sense of their identity as a parent. Such dilemmas imply consideration be given to models for the delivery of services for children whose parents are divorced or separated.

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ID Code: 116
Item Type: Conference Paper
ISBN: 0646431056
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > POLICY AND ADMINISTRATION (160500) > Social Policy (160512)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > SOCIAL WORK (160700) > Social Work not elsewhere classified (160799)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > SOCIAL WORK (160700) > Social Program Evaluation (160703)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Social Change Research
Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > QUT Carseldine - Humanities & Human Services
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2003 Judith A. Burton
Deposited On: 10 Jun 2004
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 23:03

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