Child Abuse Law and Policy: Across Boundaries

Hardcover | April 4, 2007

byLaura C.H. Hoyano, Caroline Keenan

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Whilst there may be universal agreement that 'something must be done' about child abuse, there is much less clarity about what qualifies as child abuse and what should be done about it. Policy makers often invoke the law at times of crisis which are seen to demand a societal response. Thepresence of legislation on the statute book or the creation of rules and protocols which professionals must follow is one socially acceptable sign that the problem has been recognised and that an effective response has been implemented. In the last two decades of the twentieth century, the numerous controversies about the response of public agencies and the courts to allegations of child abuse, as well as campaigns to reform the treatment of child witnesses in adversarial trial systems, provided the impetus for legal reform in bothcriminal and civil proceedings in England and Wales. These legal initiatives were ad hoc responses to specific problems, and not part of a coherent and integrated programme of reform across the criminal and civil systems. Legislators and the courts in family, criminal, and tort proceedings haveconstructed different liability and evidential rules in parallel rather than in tandem with the other courts adjudicating the same issues, and often regarding the same child. Similarly reforms in other common law jurisdictions have often been only partially understood by lawmakers in England andWales. This book looks across the legal and geographical boundaries within which the legal discussion of child abuse is usually confined. It considers the themes and policy considerations driving each form of legal response to the problem of child abuse. It also provides a detailed discussion of the lawgoverning the trial of allegations of child abuse in the key areas of family, criminal and tort law in English law, and compares this with the approaches in other common law jurisdictions using the adversarial mode of trial, in particular in Canada, the United States, New Zealand and Australia. Inits breadth and depth, Child Abuse Law and Policy Across Boundaries marks a significant contribution to the rapidly evolving field of child protection law.

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Whilst there may be universal agreement that 'something must be done' about child abuse, there is much less clarity about what qualifies as child abuse and what should be done about it. Policy makers often invoke the law at times of crisis which are seen to demand a societal response. Thepresence of legislation on the statute book or t...

Laura Hoyano holds three degrees from the University of Alberta in Canada in medieval history and law, and the BCL (Balliol College Oxford). In 1994 she accepted an academic appointment at the Law Faculty of the University of Bristol. In 1999 she became a Tutorial Fellow and CUF Lecturer at Wadham College, Oxford University, where she...
Format:HardcoverDimensions:1080 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 2.64 inPublished:April 4, 2007Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019829946X

ISBN - 13:9780198299462

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Table of Contents

AN OVERVIEW OF THIS BOOKPart I: THEMES and QUESTIONS1. INTRODUCTIONart II: THE LEGAL FRAMEWORK FOR ADJUDICATING ALLEGATIONS2. FAMILY LAW3. LIABILITY IN CRIMINAL LAW4. LIABILITY IN TORT AND HUMAN RIGHTS LAWPART III : THE INQUIRY PROCESS5. INVESTIGATING AND EVALUATING ALLEGATIONS OF ABUSEPART IV: ADJUDICATION OF THE ALLEGATION6. INTRODUCTION: THEMES AND INFLUENCES7. ACCESS TO EVIDENCE8. THE CHILD WITNESS9. TESTING THE CREDIBILITY OF THE CHILD COMPLAINANT10. TESTING THE CREDIBILITY OF THE ALLEGED ABUSER11. EXPERT EVIDENCEPART V: CHILD ABUSE LAW AND POLICY: EVALUATION12. THEMES AND FUTURE DIRECTIONS