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

OPEN ADOPTION RECORDS, THE HUMAN RIGHTS OF ADOPTED PEOPLE AND DISCRIMINATION: THE CASE OF ODIÈVRE V FRANCE 2003

J. Feast and D. Howe

European Journal of Social Work, Vol. 7, 2004, p.25-42

In France some adoption records are closed to protect the privacy of the birth mother. The article contrasts this with the approach in the UK, where adopted people have the right to access their original birth certificate and adoption records. A recent UK study has shown that adopted people gain positive benefits from accessing information about and/or contacting their birth families. Findings suggest that contact with a birth parent helps the adopted person to fill out and complete their identity without compromising their relationship with the adoptive parent.

A SURE START IN SWEDEN

B. Cohen

Community Care, July 1st-7th 2004, p.36-37

The article contrasts the UK and Swedish approach to child care. In Sweden child care provision is integrated with education, while the UK is characterised by fragmented provision and a plethora of uncoordinated initiatives targeted on deprived areas.

WELFARE HISTORY, SANCTIONS, AND DEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOMES AMONG LOW-INCOME CHILDREN AND YOUTH

B.J. Lohman and others

Social Service Review, Vol. 78, 2004, p.41-73

The article critically examines the effect that welfare receipt has on pre-school children and adolescents. The behaviour and cognitive achievement of children whose mothers claimed benefits were compared with those of their peers whose mothers had recently left welfare, and those who, although poor, had never claimed benefits. In addition, the effects of welfare sanctions were considered. Results show that adolescents whose family received welfare had lower cognitive achievement and heightened behavioural and emotional problems than those of their peers. For pre-school children, both receiving welfare and having recently ceased welfare had a detrimental effect on behaviour and academic achievement. The article explores links between these findings and mothers' health, human capital and parenting practices before discussing policy implications regarding the effects of welfare reform on children's development.

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