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NCJ Number: 228064 Find in a Library
Title: Mothers, Men, and Child Protective Services Involvement
Journal: Child Maltreatment  Volume:14  Issue:3  Dated:August 2009  Pages:263-276
Author(s): Lawrence M. Berger; Christina Paxson; Jane Waldfogel
Date Published: August 2009
Page Count: 14
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
Bethesda, MD 20892-2425
Grant Number: R01HD36916;R01HD41141;K01HD054421
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study used data on 2,297 families from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study (FFCW) in order to determine whether involvement with child protective services (CPS) varied by maternal relationship status.
Abstract: The findings supported the primary hypothesis: All family types other than one in which the biological father of all children in the household was living with the family had a higher likelihood of CPS involvement. This hypothesis withstood the inclusion of a host of selection factors and was robust to alternative model specifications, with one exception; after adjusting for selection factors, the study found no consistent evidence that maternal dating was associated with increased CPS involvement. Based on these findings, CPS agencies may be justified in viewing men in the home who are not the biological father of a child in the home as a risk factor for that child's maltreatment. Although the study cannot conclude that such risk is greater for children living with a social father than for children living with a single mother, it may be important for CPS to devise appropriate interventions that address the presence and role of social fathers in children's lives. Study data were obtained from the FFCW, a longitudinal cohort study of 4,898 children born between 1998 and 2000 in 20 U.S. Cities. Families in the study sample were categorized according to whether the mother was living with a male partner or spouse, was involved in a dating relationship, or was not romantically involved. Families in which the mother was romantically involved with a man were further delineated by whether the partner was the biological father of none, some, or all of the children in her household. The primary outcome variable was CPS involvement. 3 tables and 35 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile victims
Index Term(s): Child abuse; Child protection services; Children at risk; Domestic relations; Family structure; Gender issues
Note: For other articles in this issue, see NCJ-228060-63 and NCJ-228065.
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