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The Role of Parental Contact in Substitute Care

Journal Article


Abstract


  • This paper examines the association between parental contact and the well-being and placement status of children in substitute care. Consistent with previous research (e.g., Fanshel, 1975), the frequency of at least one form of parental contact (telephone) was positively associated with reunification and negatively with the amount of time in care. However, there were no significant changes in the frequency of contact, or improvements in the quality of family relationships between children during the 8 months of the study. Although the majority of case-workers were favorably disposed towards family contact, approximately 15-20% believed that it was not beneficial and that relationships between children and their parents were significantly deteriorating while contact arrangements were in place. Children from rural areas, of Aboriginal background, and who scored higher on a measure of hyperactivity were less likely to be visited. The significance of these findings in the context of previous family contact research is discussed. © 2002 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Publication Date


  • 2002

Citation


  • Delfabbro, P. H., Barber, J. G., & Cooper, L. (2002). The Role of Parental Contact in Substitute Care. Journal of Social Service Research, 28(3), 19-39. doi:10.1300/J079v28n03_02

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-84937376745

Web Of Science Accession Number


Start Page


  • 19

End Page


  • 39

Volume


  • 28

Issue


  • 3

Abstract


  • This paper examines the association between parental contact and the well-being and placement status of children in substitute care. Consistent with previous research (e.g., Fanshel, 1975), the frequency of at least one form of parental contact (telephone) was positively associated with reunification and negatively with the amount of time in care. However, there were no significant changes in the frequency of contact, or improvements in the quality of family relationships between children during the 8 months of the study. Although the majority of case-workers were favorably disposed towards family contact, approximately 15-20% believed that it was not beneficial and that relationships between children and their parents were significantly deteriorating while contact arrangements were in place. Children from rural areas, of Aboriginal background, and who scored higher on a measure of hyperactivity were less likely to be visited. The significance of these findings in the context of previous family contact research is discussed. © 2002 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Publication Date


  • 2002

Citation


  • Delfabbro, P. H., Barber, J. G., & Cooper, L. (2002). The Role of Parental Contact in Substitute Care. Journal of Social Service Research, 28(3), 19-39. doi:10.1300/J079v28n03_02

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-84937376745

Web Of Science Accession Number


Start Page


  • 19

End Page


  • 39

Volume


  • 28

Issue


  • 3