Safeguarding Child Development

In our 2009-11 biennial review of Serious Case Reviews, Marian Brandon and I highlighted the crucial importance of an understanding of child development to effective safeguarding of children. This is not a new perspective however, and the relevance of such understanding spans a range of areas, including:

  • recognition of the influence of development on vulnerability towards abuse
  • recognition of developmental delay as a possible indicator of abuse or neglect
  • the influence of children’s development on our interpretation of the signs and symptoms of abuse
  • the long-term impact of abuse and neglect on children’s development and how we may intervene to improve developmental outcomes, and
  • the particular vulnerability of disabled children.

These are all themes that have been explored within Child Abuse Review over the years. 25th anniversary issue 1 cover

We have now published a new virtual issue which picks up on some of the themes through a selection of some of the most important papers on the theme, particularly from recent years.

The virtual issue with a full editorial and seven papers is freely available for download from the Child Abuse Review Website

Virtual Issue on Child Development and Safeguarding


Why Have We Made Neglect So Complicated? Taking a Fresh Look at Noticing and Helping the Neglected Child
(Volume 24, Issue 2, 2015)
Brigid Daniel

Health, Developmental and Support Needs of Vulnerable Children – Comparing Children in Foster Care and Children in Need
(Volume 23, Issue 6, 2014)
Shanti Raman and Sharmishta Sahu

Out-of-Home Care versus In-home Care for Children Who Have Been Maltreated: A Systematic Review of Health and Wellbeing Outcomes
(Volume 25, Issue 4, 2016)
Miriam J. Maclean, Scott Sims, Melissa O’Donnell and Ruth Gilbert

Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect and Improvements in Child Development
(Volume 18, Issue 1, 2009)
Mogens Nygaard Christoffersen and Diane DePanfilis

Child Abuse, Child Protection and Disabled Children: A Review of Recent Research
(Volume 21, Issue 1, 2012)
Kirsten Stalker and Katherine McArthur

The Connections between Disability and Child Abuse: A Review of the Research Evidence
(Volume 1, Issue 3, 1992)
Liz Kelly