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    ‘I’m here as a social worker’: immigration status issues and safeguarding children in Private Fostering arrangements in the UK

    Wells, Karen (2019) ‘I’m here as a social worker’: immigration status issues and safeguarding children in Private Fostering arrangements in the UK. Child Abuse Review 28 (4), pp. 273-286. ISSN 0952-9136.

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    Private fostering of non-citizen children in the UK has become a focus of child protection social work since the Laming report into the death of Victoria Climbié. This paper reports on a qualitative study that aimed to understand children’s experiences of private fostering and social work practice. The study involved interviews with social workers and privately fostered children, reviews of advice line calls to Children and Families Across Borders and a review of safeguarding reports in London Boroughs. We found that many children who present as ‘privately fostered’ have been in effect abandoned by their parents and are living with strangers. While the homes they live in may be safe, their insecure immigration status renders them vulnerable and in addition, if not regularised, will lead to complicated and stalled transitions to adulthood. The key findings of thisstudy are that children whose parents are not resident in the UK are treated as privately fostered but the underlying premise of private fostering legislation, which is that the parent retains meaningful responsibility for the child, is often not in place.


    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: This is the peer reviewed version of the article, which has been published in final form at the link above. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Child Protection, Private Fostering, Immigration, Fostered children, Immigrant populations, Looked-after children, Qualitative study
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences
    Depositing User: Karen Wells
    Date Deposited: 08 Mar 2019 16:36
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:49


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