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Moving Toward Positive Systems of Child and Family Welfare

Current Issues and Future Directions

Gary Cameron, Nick Coady, and Gerald R Adams, editors

Paper 408 pp.

ISBN13: 978-0-88920-518-5

Release Date: April 2007

Online discount: 25%

$44.99  $33.74


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Faced with rapidly changing social and economic conditions, service professionals, policy developers, and researchers have raised significant concerns about the Canadian child welfare system. This book draws inspiration from experiences with three broad, international child welfare paradigms—child protection, family service, and community healing/caring (First Nations)—to look at how specific practices in other countries, as well as alternative experiments in Canada, might foster positive innovations in the Canadian child welfare approach.

Foundational values and purposes, systems design and policy, and organization and management are discussed, as are front-line service delivery, service provider work environments, and the realities of daily living for families. Informed by recent research, the contributors provide clear directions for policy, administration, and service-delivery reforms. Informing policy debates addressing child maltreatment and family welfare, this book will serve as a vital resource for managers, service providers, professionals, and students in the fields of social work, child and youth care, family studies, psychology, and special education.

Gary Cameron is the Lyle S. Hallman Chair of Child and Family Welfare at the Faculty of Social Work, Wilfrid Laurier University. His current program of research focuses on the lives of families involved in child welfare and children’s mental health services, international comparisons of systems of child and family welfare, and systems of care for children and families involved in residential mental health placements.

Nick Coady has been with the Faculty of Social Work at Wilfrid Laurier University since 1994. His teaching and research interests focus on the importance of relationship and other common factors in social work practice. Recent publications include a co-edited textbook on theories for clinical social work and a journal site on good helping relationships in child welfare.

Gerald R. Adams is a professor of family relations and human development at the University of Guelph. He is interested in the study of adolescence to adulthood, and identity development during childhood and adolescence. Recent books include the Blackwell Handbook on Adolescence and the Handbook of Adolescent Behavioral Problems: Evidence-Based Approaches to Prevention and Treatment.


“The authors succeed in examining the field from a ... holistic angle. They emphasize famly living realities and service involvement by consistently calling on service providers to question and reform their perspectives of children, women, and families.... Strengths of this edited text include its foundation in current research, a focus on the provision of children’s mental health services, comparison of international child welfare practices, and some attention to Aboriginal peoples. While some may consider the Canadian context too particular for wider applicability, the critiques are useful and vital for most jurisdictions, and the innovations that are offered could—and should—be considered anywhere the Anglo-American paradigm for child welfare holds sway.... Highly recommended. All levels/libraries.”

— G. Bruyere, Nicola Valley Institute of Technology, CHOICE

“Timely in outlining the challenges faced by practitioners and the need for reform.... The chapter on ‘Understanding and Preventing Burnout and Employee Turnover,’ is a must read for every child welfare worker, employer and their human resource department.”

— Darlene MacDonald, Winnipeg Child and Family Services Branch, Canadian Social Work/Travail social canadien