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Predictors of social service contact among teenagers in England

Henderson, Morag, Scourfield, Jonathan Bryn ORCID:, Cheung, Sin Yi ORCID: and Sharland, Elaine 2016. Predictors of social service contact among teenagers in England. British Journal of Social Work 46 (6) , pp. 1485-1501. 10.1093/bjsw/bcv081

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Very few UK studies make use of longitudinal general population data to explore social service contact for children and young people. Those that do only look at specific interventions such as care placements. This paper seeks to address this gap by asking to what extent do structural, neighbourhood, familial and individual characteristics predict social service contact. We provide an empirical answer by analysing the Longitudinal Survey of Young People in England, which includes data on social service contact in connection with young people's behaviour. Our findings indicate that social class, gender, ethnicity, stepfamily status and special education needs are all significant predictors of social service contact. Difficult parent–child relationships, frequent arguments and parents' lack of engagement with school meetings also matter, as does young people's own risk-taking behaviour. We conclude with a discussion of the limitation of the data for social work research and the implications of the findings.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 0045-3102
Funders: Nuffield Foundation
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Date of Acceptance: 30 June 2015
Last Modified: 08 Nov 2023 04:14

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