The Welfare of Children / Edition 2

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Today the United States has more children living in poverty than any other industrialized nation. More than a quarter of all children grow up in poverty. The poverty rates for African-American and Hispanic children exceed 40 percent. Furthermore, the United States, a country which once pioneered strategies to prevent child abuse and which now spends more money fighting child abuse than any other industrialized country, has the highest rate of child abuse in the industrialized world. Against this background, Duncan Lindsey, a leading authority on child welfare, takes a critical look at the current child welfare system. He traces the transformation of child welfare into child protective services. The current focus on abuse has produced a system that is designed to protect children from physical and sexual abuse and therefore functions as a last resort for only the worst and most dramatic cases in child welfare. In a close analysis of the process of investigating and handling child abuse, Lindsey finds that there is no evidence that the transformation to protective services has reduced child abuse fatalities or provided a safer environment for children. He makes a compelling argument for the criminal justice system to assume responsibility for the problem of child abuse in order that the child welfare system can address the well-being of a much larger number of children. The Welfare of Children is a compassionate blueprint for comprehensive reform of the child welfare system to one that administers to the economic security of the large number of disadvantaged and impoverished children. Concrete policy proposals such as a Child's Future Security account, similar to the Social Security program for older citizens, will spark serious debate on a major public policy issue facing our society.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In a challenging, clearly written work, Lindsey proposes specific programs that, he argues, would do much to ensure adequate support for the largest impoverished age group in the United States today: children in single-parent families. He advocates moving responsibility for child abuse cases to the criminal justice system, leaving social welfare to focus on child neglect. He would establish a Universal Child Support Collection aimed at noncustodial parents, an across-the-board Guaranteed Child Exemption (tax credit) and, to provide "escape velocity" from the poverty/welfare cycle, a Child's Future Security Account (comparable to funding for the elderly or disabled). Like Marion Wright Edelman (Families in Peril, LJ 3/1/87), Lindsey sees neglected children as potentially valuable human resources, if society will commit to investing in them. Strongly recommended for professionals, politicians, academics, and concerned lay readers.-Suzanne W. Wood, SUNY Coll. of Technology, Alfred
From the Publisher
"A major contribution to current discussions on child welfare. It not only provides a thorough survey of the field, but offers an incisive critique of the way the system currently fails to meet its declared objective of enhancing the welfare of children."—Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare

"In a challenging, clearly written work, Lindsey proposes specific programs that, he argues, would do much to ensure adequate support for the largest impoverished age group in the United States today: children in single-parent families....Like Marion Wright Edelman, Lindsey sees neglected children as potentially valuable human resources, if society will commit to investing in them. Strongly recommended for professionals, politicians, academics, and concerned lay readers."—Library Journal

"Proposes practical long-term measures to break the poverty cycle, such as modifying the federal income tax collection systems to ensure child-support payments, and the establishment of the child's future security account."—ALA Booklist

"An important book."—Children and Youth Services Review

"The Welfare of Children provides an engaging scholarly review of the public child welfare system, child welfare efforts, the changing nature of the child welfare system and families in North America. The title sets the stage for a comprehensive approach to nourishing the welfare of all children....This is an important book. It clearly describes the limitations of current child welfare programs and provides specific policy recommendations. Only through such a preventative-oriented focus can the welfare of all children be encouraged. Recommendations made are well-argued and suggest clear steps that can be taken."—Eileen Gambrill, University of California at Berkeley

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195136715
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 11/6/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 472
  • Sales rank: 1,285,321
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 6.10 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

About the Author:
Duncan Lindsey is Associate Professor of Social Welfare at the University of California at Los Angeles. He is the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Children and Youth Services Review.

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Table of Contents

Part I. The Child Welfare System
1. Emergence of the Modern Child Welfare System
2. Child Welfare Research: The Effectiveness of Casework
3. Child Welfare Reform through Research: Permanency Planning
4. The Changing Portrait of the American Family
5. The End of Child Welfare: The Transformation of Child Welfare into Children's Protective Services
6. The Decision to Remove a Child
7. Dealing with Child Abuse, the Red Herring of Child Welfare
Part II. Ending Child Poverty
8. Wealth and Poverty in America: The Economic Condition of Children
9. The Rise and Fall of Welfare for Disadvantaged Children in America
10. The Fading Promise of Welfare Reform to End Child Poverty
11. Two Simple Programs for Ending Child Poverty
12. Child Future Savings Account: Social Security for Children
Author Index
Subject Index

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