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The child death review process: Intervention and the welfare/surveillance dichotomy

Devine, Lauren

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Abstract

This paper discusses whether evidential and procedural issues identified in relation to public family law assessment can be used to further understanding of the Child Death Review Process, an under-researched but important process of statutory family assessment. Pre-litigation stages of family investigation, particularly in relation to child protection and safeguarding assessments undertaken within the framework for the assessment of children in need are set out in Working Together to Safeguard Children. The Child Death Review Process, also in Working Together to Safeguard Children is applied in cases of sudden unexpected deaths in infancy (SUDI cases). Assessment of bereaved parents is particularly sensitive and highlights the problems of mixing investigatory assessment with measures intended to be supportive. This paper questions the function of the Child Death Review Process asking whether it forms part of a drift towards increasingly intrusive state surveillance of families and particularly parents. If it falls into this category issues common to both types of assessment have ramifications for decision making, including decisions made by courts in subsequent public family law or criminal proceedings.

Citation

Devine, L. (2014, December). The child death review process: Intervention and the welfare/surveillance dichotomy. Paper presented at Sudden Unexpected Deaths in Infancy (SUDI) Conference

Presentation Conference Type Conference Paper (unpublished)
Conference Name Sudden Unexpected Deaths in Infancy (SUDI) Conference
Start Date Dec 4, 2014
End Date Dec 4, 2014
Publicly Available Date Nov 30, -0001
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Keywords child death review process, SUDI, family assessment, child protection, courts, expert evidence
Additional Information Title of Conference or Conference Proceedings : Sudden Unexpected Deaths in Infancy (SUDI) Conference

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