Poverty, Neglect, and Client Involvement in the Child Welfare System: Perceptions of Workers and Parent Clients
Proceedings of the National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR), April 2013
8 Pages Posted: 24 Nov 2013
Date Written: October 16, 2013
This exploratory research examines perceptions of relations between poverty and client involvement in child welfare cases of alleged or substantiated physical neglect. The primary data used to gain insight into how poverty is seen to impact cases of this type was collected by way of semi-structured, in-depth interviews with both workers for, and clients of, child welfare agencies in four of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula counties. Audio recordings of the interviews were analyzed and coded with NVivo computer software, and a grounded theory approach was taken, allowing concepts and themes (that helped to answer questions raised during the research process) to emerge from the data. Compiled data suggest that poverty can affect all three types of client involvement identified here, as well as case outcomes, according not only to clients, but also to workers.
Keywords: Family, poverty, neglect
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