When Families Relinquish Care of a Child with a Disability: Perceptions from Birthmothers

Ellem, Kathleen, Wilson, Jill and Chenoweth, Lesley (2015) When Families Relinquish Care of a Child with a Disability: Perceptions from Birthmothers. Australian Social Work, 69 1: 39-50. doi:10.1080/0312407X.2015.1015039


Author Ellem, Kathleen
Wilson, Jill
Chenoweth, Lesley
Title When Families Relinquish Care of a Child with a Disability: Perceptions from Birthmothers
Journal name Australian Social Work   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1447-0748
0312-407X
Publication date 2015-03-19
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/0312407X.2015.1015039
Open Access Status
Volume 69
Issue 1
Start page 39
End page 50
Total pages 12
Place of publication Melbourne, Australia
Publisher Routledge
Collection year 2016
Language eng
Abstract This paper explores the experiences and perceptions of four mothers who relinquished care of their child with a disability to residential care in the child protection system in Queensland. Qualitative in-depth interviews were conducted with mothers who asked the statutory authority to assume care of their child. The mothers’ narratives put into sharp focus the socio-political nature of caring for a person with a disability, and the need for more coordinated resources and expertise in supporting such families. According to the mothers’ perspectives, relinquishment provided some reprieve from daily caring responsibilities but was complicated by associated feelings of grief, anxiety, and guilt; behavioural and emotional adjustment of the child with a disability; and difficulties working collaboratively with child protection workers. The findings highlight service deficiencies and the need to build a strong evidence base to improve practice in these areas.
Keyword Child Protection Workers
Disability
Family Support
Out-of-home Care
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work Publications
 
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