Recent Submissions

  • Collaborative working in the resettlement of young people leaving custody

    Olaitan, Paul; Pitts, John; University of Bedfordshire (Emerald Group Publishing Ltd., 2020-06-17)
    Purpose: This paper aims to endeavour to sketch out a blueprint for effective collaborative working in resettlement. Design/methodology/approach: The paper is based on a review of the relevant research and interviews with professionals concerned with the resettlement of young people from custody in organisations and agencies that were partners in the Beyond Youth Custody programme. Findings: Practitioners working on the youth resettlement pathway between custody and community report collaborative practices to be more beneficial both to the young people involved as well as the practitioners themselves, in the conduct of their efforts. Originality/value: To the best of the authors’ knowledge, the originality of this paper consists in its investigation of resettlement practice by consulting those actually engaged in the resettlement process.
  • Pedagogical love in Finland and Australia: a study of refugee children and their teachers

    Kaukko, Mervi; Wilkinson, Jane; Kohli, Ravi K.S. (Taylor and Francis, 2021-01-05)
    After claiming asylum, refugee children work to re-build their worlds across three dimensions: safety, belonging, and success. This article examines the pedagogical practices that support this work arguing that a key, but under-examined practice draws on what we have termed pedagogical love. Building on a qualitative Finnish-Australian study, we suggest that as refugee students enter schools in their host countries, pedagogical love can be created through teacher-student interactions in a range of ways despite limited shared language. Later, pedagogical practices that foster a nurturing classroom environment and help students to build a sense of belonging become increasingly important. As students settle in their schools and societies, teachers showing a belief both in the child and their contribution to their new society are crucial. We understand that these actions may be described as teachers’ professional duty of care. Yet our findings show that teachers went beyond this duty by opening their minds and hearts to the students’ lived conditions, engaging with their histories, and constantly shaping their pedagogy accordingly. These practices, we argue, are forms of pedagogical love.
  • Safeguarding adults and COVID-19: a sector-led improvement response

    Cooper, Adi; University of Bedfordshire (Emerald Group Holdings Ltd., 2020-10-21)
    Purpose: This study aims to describe the sector-led response to the COVID-19 pandemic and national lockdown in terms of safeguarding adults. Design/methodology/approach: This study uses a case study method to examine a sector-led improvement response to COVID-19 and safeguarding adults. Findings: The study describes how safeguarding issues and concerns were identified and brought together, and then responded to. It reviews this initiative in the context of crisis intervention theory and discusses the achievements of this initiative regarding COVID-19 and safeguarding adults during the period April–July 2020. Originality/value: The study describes a unique joint initiative between the Local Government Association and the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, which worked with the Networks of Chairs of Safeguarding Adults Boards, Safeguarding Adults Boards’ managers and Principal Social Workers. This initiative developed resources and shared information and good practice to support a response in unprecedented circumstances.
  • Towards geographies of child protection

    Disney, Tom; Lloyd, Jenny (Wiley, 2020-09-20)
    The emergence of current and historic cases of child abuse across the globe has, in recent years, dominated the news, political agendas and popular discourse surrounding children. From serious case reviews to exploitation in post-conflict zones, from sexual abuse of children by groups to trafficking of drugs across countries, the importance of protecting children is an increasing concern in many countries. Key to, and inherent in, all of these processes and phenomena are child protection systems, working in varying degrees of effectiveness. While geographic interest has touched upon many of these areas, the role of child protection systems, and the practitioners that work within these, do not explicitly feature within this work. In this article, we seek to develop an introduction to geographies of child protection, producing an initial critical review which points to future research avenues in this field. We adopt a Foucauldian approach and review four themes to illustrate the ways in which geographical approaches might yield important insights. Drawing primarily on England as a context, we consider the historical geographies and origins of child protection, relational practices in contemporary child protection, the impact of austerity and finally we consider what future directions might require a geographical approach.
  • Teenage pregnancy: strategies for prevention

    Hadley, Alison; University of Bedfordshire (Elsevier, 2020-11-16)
    Teenage pregnancy is a cause and consequence of inequality, limiting the life chances of young parents and their children. It is an issue of global concern, with many countries developing programmes of prevention. This review focuses on the experience of the England strategy, launched in 1999 to address the historically high rates. It is one of the few examples of a successful long term, multi-agency programme, led by national government and locally delivered which, between 1998 and 2018, reduced the under-18 conception rate by 64%. It sets out the case for helping young people delay early pregnancy, the international evidence for prevention, how evidence is translated into a ‘whole system’ approach and the priorities for further reducing inequalities. Questions are included to encourage both investigation into local programmes on teenage pregnancy prevention, and reflection on individual practice. The review concludes with summarizing the next steps for England and the lessons that can be shared more widely.
  • Legacies of indenture: identity and belonging in post-colonial Jamaica

    Zacharias, Thomas A.; Mullings-Lawrence, Sireita; Goldsmiths, University of London; University of Bedfordshire (Routledge, 2020-01-27)
    This article examines narratives of identity and belonging among descendants of white German indentured labourers in Jamaica and the local community in which they live. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork and qualitative interviews the research shows the ways in which members of the community in the village of Seaford Town make sense of and articulate elements of their German cultural heritage. This paper argues that while ideas about whiteness suffuse many of the identity-narratives, whiteness can variously be muted or amplified as a marker of identity. Similarly, notions of German-ness are not consistently articulated as embodied cultural forms. Here, culture is not conceptualized as static or embodied, but can be claimed and shared. In sum, the paper speaks to the ways in which whiteness read through a historical lens becomes remade in a contemporary context.
  • Violence and alternative care: a rapid review of the evidence

    Brodie, Isabelle; Pearce, Jenny J.; University of Bedfordshire (Taylor Francis, 2017-02-06)
    This paper focuses on the mechanisms through which international policy and practice relating to the safeguarding of children and young people living in alternative care is being implemented in national policy and practice. It is based on a rapid review of the evidence regarding the violence experienced by children and young people living in different forms of alternative care internationally. The evidence base indicates that children living in alternative care are especially vulnerable to violence and abuse, prior to and during their care experience and also in the longer term. The introduction of the UN Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children has encouraged greater attention to this issue. The paper concludes that progress is variable according to a range of political, economic and social factors, and that greater attention to practice at national and community levels is required if more effective safeguarding practice is required. A more sophisticated evidence base is required to support this.
  • Young people and ‘county lines’: a contextual and social account

    Wroe, Lauren; University of Bedfordshire (Emerald, 2021-01-04)
    This paper presents an analysis of a ‘county lines’ safeguarding partnership in a large city region of England. A critical analysis of current literature and practice responses to ‘county lines’ is followed by the presentation of an analytical framework that draws on three contextual and social theories of (child) harm. This framework is applied to the partnership work to ask: are the interconnected conditions of criminal exploitation of children via ‘county lines’ understood, do interventions target the contexts of harm, and is social and institutional harm acknowledged and addressed? The analytical framework is applied to a dataset collected by the author throughout a two year study of the project. Qualitative data collected by the author and quantitative data published by the project are coded and thematically analysed in NVivo against the analytic framework. Critical tensions are surfaced in how multi-agency, child welfare practices are applied to ‘county lines’ affected young people. Generalising these findings to the child welfare sector at large, it is proposed that the contextual dynamics of child harm via ‘county lines’ must be understood in a broader sense, including how multi-agency child welfare practices contribute to the harm experienced by young people. There are limited peer-reviewed analyses of child welfare responses to ‘county lines’. This paper contributes to that limited scholarship, extending the analysis by adopting a critical analytic framework to a regional county lines project at the juncture of future national, child welfare responses to ‘county lines’.
  • Covid-19, county lines and the seriously “left behind”

    Pitts, John; University of Bedfordshire (JAI Press, 2020-09-25)
    Purpose: The purpose of this study is to suggest how the Covid-19 lockdown may affect illicit drug users and vulnerable children and young people who become involved in County lines drug dealing. Design/methodology/approach: This is an “opinion piece” based on data released by central and local government departments and voluntary sector sources concerning the impact of the Covid-19 restrictions on illicit drug users and vulnerable children and young people. The data is augmented with information from recent discussions with police officers, youth workers and social workers in a London borough. Findings: It appears that the Covid-19 restrictions have had, and will continue to have, a deleterious impact upon both illicit drug users and the young people caught up in County lines drug distribution. Originality/value: The study’s originality lies in its attempt to use a range of sources to anticipate the consequences of the Covid-19 restrictions on illicit drug users and vulnerable children and young people.
  • Creating dialogical pop-up installations in public spaces

    Simon, Gail; Kebbe, Lisen; Olsson, Ann-Margreth E.; Vedeler, Anne Hedvig Helmer (Everything is Connected Press, 2017-10-22)
    In this paper, we share reflections from our research into spontaneous coordinations through the creation of pop-up dialogical installations. We offer a collage of anecdotes from our professional practice, from our personal lives and from dialogical installations. These episodes highlight themes from our everyday practice and show us what we do and what we value, but through new doorways. From our work on the streets, we see how i) making something with, and for, people requires daring; ii) we are always involved in reconfiguring dialogical space as we go; iii) we exchange planning for preparation; iv) dialogue is always influenced by, and influencing of, context; v) collage in writing and mixed media allows us to experiment with new configurations of words, and share some mo(ve)ments from the installations.
  • Transmaterial worlding : beyond human systems

    Simon, Gail; Salter, Leah Karen (Everything is Connected Press, 2019-12-31)
    In this paper we reframe systemic social construction as transmaterial worlding to include human and non-human participants. We discuss what it means to be human in the Anthropocene era with reference to posthuman new materialist theory. We introduce systemic living as onto-epistemological becoming, movement and meaning-making practices in and between human and non-human parts of our worlds. The paper discusses power relations and ways of bringing forth lost-destroyed indigenous ways of knowing which make time and space for new understandings and experimental responses to what we are making together at a local and global level. We discuss how transmaterial worlding requires a new understanding by humans to see their place in this planet as co-inhabitation. We offer examples of transmaterial worlding from across different contexts and suggest some systemic questions for how we can live ethically in a transmaterial world that honours societal, cultural, professional and other kinds of situated knowledge and know-how.
  • Eight criteria for quality in systemic practitioner research

    Simon, Gail (Everything is Connected Press, 2018-10-20)
    This paper describes the rationale and context for eight key markers of quality in qualitative systemic practitioner research. The criteria are designed for systemic practitioner researchers who are researching from the position of practitioner-at-work. The criteria include Systemic Practice, Methodology, Situatedness, Relational Ethics, Relational Aesthetics, Reflexivity, Coherence, and Contributions. They build on existing criteria for quality developed within the fields of post-positivist qualitative research and professional practice research by embedding them in systemic practice theory, activity and values. Distinctions are made between practitioner research and research about practice, and between positivist and post-positivist research. This eight-point framework brings together existing systemic methods of inquiry which recognise theimportance of understanding context, movement and relational know-how. The paper proposes that systemic or relationally reflexive practice is already a form of collaborative inquiry or action research in which any action, research included, inevitably contains intention and acts as an intervention. While working with people in small and immediate systems, systemic practitioner researchers are critically reflexive in understanding how local issues are connected to wider socio-political systems and discourses.
  • Alcohol use in older adults: analysis of UK survey and alcohol treatment data

    Wadd, Sarah; University of Bedfordshire (University of Bedfordshire, 2020-12-10)
    This report provides an analysis of data from 15,753 people aged 50 and over who took part in an alcohol survey or attended alcohol services to get help with their drinking during 2015-2020.
  • Moving beyond discourses of agency, gain and blame: reconceptualising young people’s experiences of sexual exploitation

    Beckett, Helen (Policy Press, 2019-01-01)
    This chapter explores the relationship between victimhood and agency, and the unhelpful binary ways in which it has often been conceptualised within child sexual exploitation (CSE) discourse and practice to date. It observes how adherence to dichotomous conceptualisations of those experiencing CSE, and associated narrow understandings of CSE victimhood, have served to diminish our responses to particular populations and particular manifestations of harm; namely those typified by any degree of observable agency on the part of the child. Here, reframing young people's experiences of CSE through the lens of structuration theory offers a much-needed way to move us beyond the observable simplistic binary conceptualisations of victimhood versus agency. It helps us to better understand and respond to the widely variable and complex dynamics and contexts of CSE. Specifically, reconceptualising young people as ‘reflexive agents’ operating within a ‘structure of constraint’ offers us a means of concurrently recognising the range of biographical and contextual factors at play in any given situation, and allows us to move beyond exclusionary ‘idealised’ victim-based patterns of identification and response.
  • Addressing the needs of older adults receiving alcohol treatment during the Covid-19 pandemic: a qualitative study

    Seddon, Jennifer L.; Trevena, Paulina; Wadd, Sarah; Elliott, Lawrie; Dutton, Maureen; McCann, Michelle; Willmott, Sarah; Breslin, Julie; Glasgow Caledonian University; University of Bedfordshire (Drink Wise Age Well, 2020-12-09)
    This study aims to better understand the impact of the pandemic on older alcohol service users aged 55+ and alcohol service providers. The key aims of the study are to: 1 Explore the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown on older service users, including on their alcohol consumption. 2 Identify how alcohol services have adapted and supported older service users, and how staff experienced these changes. 3 Identify the short and long-term implications for service provision, and how service responses could be improved.
  • Complexity and challenge: a triennial analysis of SCRs 2014-2017

    Brandon, Marian; Sidebotham, Peter; Belderson, Pippa; Cleaver, Hedy; Dickens, Jonathan; Garstang, Joanna; Harris, Julie Philippa; Sorensen, Penny; Wate, Russell; University of East Anglia; et al. (Department for Education, 2020-03-04)
    This is a triennial review of a total of 368 Serious Case Reviews (SCRs) from the period 1 April 2014 - 31 March 2017. A serious case review (SCR) is carried out by a Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) where abuse or neglect of a child is known or suspected and either a child has died, or has been seriously harmed and there is cause for concern as to the way in which the authority, their Board partners or other relevant persons have worked together to safeguard the child. The study’s primary aim was to understand the key issues, themes and challenges from the cases examined and to draw out implications for both policy makers and practitioners.
  • Contextual safeguarding and child protection: rewriting the rules

    Firmin, Carlene Emma (Routledge, 2020-05-20)
    This book offers a complete account of Contextual Safeguarding theory, policy, and practice frameworks for the first time. It highlights the particular challenge of extra-familial routes through which young people experience significant harm, such as child sexual exploitation, criminal exploitation, serious youth violence, domestic abuse in teenage relationships, bullying, gang-association, and radicalisation. Through analysing case reviews, observing professionals, and co-creating practices with them, Firmin provides a personal, philosophical, strategic, and practical account of the design, implementation and future of Contextual Safeguarding. Drawing together a wealth of practice examples, case studies, policy references, and practitioner insights for the first time, this book articulates a new safeguarding framework and provides a detailed account of its translation across an entire child protection system and its relevant component parts. It will be of interest to all scholars, students, and professionals working within social work, youth justice and youth work, policing and law enforcement, community safety, council services, forensic and clinical psychology, counselling, health, and education
  • Transitions from care to adulthood: messages to inform practice

    Munro, Emily; Simkiss, Douglas (Churchill Livingstone, 2020-03-07)
    Transition is the process of moving from a child focussed system to an adult orientated system. It is complicated for all children and a well-recognised point of weakness in health care. For looked after children transition is more complex with movements from social worker to personal advisor, from foster care (or children's home) to independent accommodation, from school to work, further or higher education or to none of these. It is also a time when the young person moves from children's health services to adult health services. Looked after children navigate these transition points with less support than many other children. Coincidentally, it occurs at an age when mental illness most commonly emerges. This paper describes the transitions in detail, considers the legislative framework, pathway plans and the mental health transition.
  • Extended care: global dialogue on policy, practice and research

    van Breda, Adrian D.; Munro, Emily; Gilligan, Robbie; Anghel, Roxana; Harder, Annemiek; Incarnato, Mariana; Mann-Feder, Varda; Refaeli, Tehila; Stohler, Renate; Storø, jan; et al. (Elsevier Ltd, 2020-10-13)
    Young people who are taken up into the care system (including foster, formal kinship and residential or group care) traditionally have to leave care at age 18, the generally accepted age of adulthood. Research globally has shown that most youth are not ready to transition to independent living at 18 and require additional support into early adulthood. One specific type of support that has gained increasing interest is extended care arrangements, including permitting young people to remain in their care placements beyond the age of 18. While widely discussed, there is a limited body of literature on the conceptualisation, implementation and evaluation of extended care, and almost no cross-national dialogue on extended care. This article aims to gather together a range of experiences on extended care and to explore the extent to which there is a cross-national consensus on the conceptualisation and operationalisation of extended care. Ten countries participated in the study, reviewing their country's extended care policy, practice and research using a common matrix. Findings reveal adoption of aspects of extended care in all countries, wide variations in how extended care is conceptualised, legislated, funded and implemented, and very little research on the effectiveness of extended care. The authors recommend resolving cross-national variations in the conceptualisation of extended care and further research on the role and contribution of extended care placements to improved outcomes for youth in diverse social, political and economic contexts.

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