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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 2004): Child Welfare - Overseas

FAMILY AND CHILD WELL-BEING AFTER WELFARE REFORM

D.J. Besharov

New Brunswick: Transaction Publishers, 2004

Welfare caseloads in the United States have dropped 50 per cent since their historic high in 1994 - more than 5 million fewer families received welfare during the 1990s. This book explores how low-income children and their families are faring in the wake of welfare reform. The book covers a broad range of topics:

  • an update on welfare reform;
  • ongoing major research;
  • material well-being;
  • family verses household;
  • teenage sex, pregnancy, and non-martial births;
  • child maltreatment and foster care;
  • homelessness and housing;
  • child health and well-being;
  • nutrition, food, security, and obesity;
  • crime, juvenile delinquency, and dysfunctional behaviour;
  • mothers' work and childcare;
  • the activities of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

THE NEW FAMILY'S VULNERABLE VANGUARD: CHILD MAINTENANCE REFORM IN NORWAY

A. Skevik

Social Policy & Society, Vol. 3, 2004, p.11-19

The article explores the Norwegian child maintenance reforms of 2001. The reforms reflect changing assumptions about male and female responsibilities and are based on parents dividing caring and bread-winning tasks equally between them. The article questions whether these assumptions are a fair reflection of Norwegian society and suggests the reforms may be putting undue pressure on already vulnerable families.

OF KIN AND CULTURE: US CHILDREN AND INTERNATIONAL KINSHIP CARE PLACEMENTS

D. Naughton and K.L. Fay

Adoption and Fostering, vol.27, Winter 2003, p.30-37

Children of immigrants to the USA may be placed in foster care when parents die, or abandon or neglect them. When making placement decisions, welfare workers usually family members living abroad. Through case description and summary of domestic laws and international conventions, authors identify challenges to cross-border placements and make recommendations for further research.

TOWARDS NEW MODELS OF PROFESSIONAL FOSTER CARE

F. Ainsworth and A. Maluccio

Adoption and Fostering, vol.27, Winter 2003, p.46-50

Foster care is in crisis in the USA, the UK and Australia. In response, authors argue that new models of foster care need to be considered. Two models are proposed:

  • family for family, which involves a foster family forming a long-term connection with a birth family;
  • circles of friends, which is designed for children whose challenging behaviours exhaust traditional foster carers.
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