Progress Toward a Prevention Perspective
This chapter was published in, and the following abstract taken from the Fall 2009 edition of the journal The Future of Children (v 19.2).
The authors chart developments in the field of child maltreatment and propose a new framework for preventing child abuse and neglect. They begin by describing the concept of investment-prevention as it has been applied recently in fields such as health care and welfare. They then explain how the new framework applies to maltreatment prevention, noting in particular how it differs from the traditional child protective services response to maltreatment.
Whereas the traditional response aims to prevent a recurrence of maltreatment once it has already taken place, the new framework focuses on preventing maltreatment from occurring at all. Rather than identifying risk factors for maltreatment and addressing the problems and deficiencies of the primary caretaker, the new framework focuses on strengthening protective factors and building family and social networks to reinforce the ability of parents to care for their children.