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The Prevention of Child Abuse

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article


Journal publication date1999
JournalChildren and Society
Number of pages13
Original languageEnglish


An apparent practice oriented consensus that child abuse can and should be prevented covers over considerable conflict in ideology, interest and conceptual understanding. Three current approaches to the prevention of child abuse are reviewed: clinical health led risk assessment models, broader social reform strategies and criminal justice youth victimisation models. Sources of contradiction are explored through the definitions of child abuse underpinning different strategies. The paper proposes a change in the language of child protection, away from child abuse towards specified avoidable harm.