Social Policy, Social Work and Social Justice Research Collection

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  • Publication
    Barriers or Pathways? Aiding Retrospective Disclosures of Childhood Sexual Abuse to Child Protection Services
    (University College Dublin. School of Social Policy, Social Work, and Social Justice, 2021-10-08)
    Under Irish child protection policy, adults who do come forward to disclose frequently have interactions with the state child protection services (CPS). Such interactions, known as retrospective disclosures, have been a feature of Irish child protection policy since 1999 and are defined as “disclosures byadults of abuse which took place during their childhood” (Department of Health and Children, 1999, p39). Since 1999 problematic issues and inconsistencies in practice and policy relating to the receipt, management and assessment of such disclosures by child protection services have been identified (Mooney, 2018, 2021; O’Mahony, 2020; Office of the Ombudsman, 2017; Health and Information Quality Authority (HIQA), 2018). Some of the issues identified have included delays in responding to adults who disclose (e.g. Office of the Ombudsman, 2017), potential risk posed to children due to non-assessment of alleged perpetrators (e.g. HIQA, 2015), a perceived lack of expertise in child protection agencies when responding to adults who come forward (e.g. Mooney, 2021), and the lack of a robust legal basis upon which CPS can conduct assessments of such disclosures (O’Mahony, 2020; Mooney, 2018). At present, key stakeholders in the field of therapy, advocacy, and support highlight that these issues may be further compounded by recent developments in respect of mandatory reporting and data protection (Baker, 2021). This study sought to explore these contemporary experiences of engagement with CPS.
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  • Publication
    How large families fare in Germany: Examining child poverty risks and policy solutions
    Historically, researchers and policymakers alike recognized the risk of poverty among large families, but family size is often neglected in the contemporary literature. This article revives an examination of the connections between family size and poverty risk for children with a focus on Germany. We take a child-centered perspective by analyzing a sample of 13–14 year-old children from the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS). First, we provide a detailed overview of the welfare and tax policies aimed at large families in Germany. Next, we estimate the poverty risk and prevalence for children in large families (looking at families with 3+ and 4+ children). Finally, we discuss how the policy and socio-economic context interacts with the risk of poverty. We identify that the means-tested social assistance scheme penalizes large families, while the child benefit would only acknowledge higher need of middle-income families with three or more children.
      16Scopus© Citations 2
  • Publication
    Ireland’s paternity leave: sluggish benefit take-up and occupational inequalities
    (Taylor and Francis, 2023)
    Ireland used to be a laggard in implementing modern fatherhood policies compared to its European neighbours. In 2016, it was one of the last EU countries to introduce paid paternity leave and three years later parental leave. These reforms indicate that Ireland is moving away from the US model of fatherhood to a social investment state closer to the Swedish model of shared parenthood. With the introduction of Paternity Benefit the Irish government aimed to achieve a take-up of about 46–61%, which is used as a yardstick to evaluate its success. First, this article assesses paternity leave take-up comprehensively through four different rates based on administrative and aggregate data. Overall, take-up had been increasing initially, but levelled already after four years at the lower government target. This is puzzling as countries with similar reforms reported a constant increase and higher take-up over time. Second, drivers for the low take-up are discussed. Specifically, occupational and class inequalities are key factors as only 55 percent of the male workforce have access to occupational top-ups in addition to the relatively low statutory benefit. Without increasing benefit generosity, take-up will stabilize at the rather modest levels in comparison to other European welfare states.
      19
  • Publication
    Education in a warming world: Trends, opportunities and pitfalls for institutes of higher education
    Higher education institutes (HEI) face considerable challenges in navigating how to respond to the escalating and intertwined socio-ecological sustainability crises. Many dedicated individuals working in the sector are already driving meaningful action through rigorous research, teaching, knowledge sharing, and public engagement, while there is a growing consensus that sector-wide change is needed to ensure that aspirational declarations and positive individual actions translate into sustainable and transformative change. This article seeks to contribute to such efforts by illustrating a number of trends, examples, and reflections on how third-level educational institutes can act sustainably. We highlight the potential of five strategies HEI could employ to support the creation of a more sustainable future namely, (i) innovative approaches to climate change education; (ii) research agendas for societal transformations; (iii) providing climate change education for professional development; (iv) supporting public intellectuals; and (iv) investing in whole-systems approaches to greening the campus. The insights are the product of an interdisciplinary working group with members from across Europe, Australia, and the UK. These international examples provide insight and a sense of possibility for future application.
      26Scopus© Citations 6
  • Publication
    Inequality, emissions, and human well-being
    (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2023-06-08) ; ;
    Development strategies generally align with the assumption that economic growth and the use of fossil fuels, despite the resulting emissions, lead to improvements in human well-being. This logic suggests that reductions in emissions could harm human well-being. In addition to raising sustainability concerns, one component left out of such approaches is the role of inequality. This chapter highlights the importance of incorporating inequality into studies of emissions and human well-being. We review the relevant sociological literature and demonstrate how well-being, emissions, and the relationship between the two are shaped by inequality. We also summarize how the nature of these relationships vary by context and scale. We briefly outline two approaches to addressing climate change to protect the planet and promote human well-being: global climate negotiations and social movements for climate justice. We conclude by discussing directions forward for research and policy.
      41