Child and Family Sensitive Practice: Are Clients' Children Our Clients Too?

Ann Roche, Allan Trifonoff, Michael White

    Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


    Issues: Child and family sensitive practice has received increasing attention as a potentially important component of alcohol and other drugs (AOD) treatment. It has been incorporated into standard practice in a number of services, but it is not universally adopted or supported. Views about its role are not well known.

    Approach: Using a semi-structured interview protocol, 18 key stakeholders from the AOD and child protection/child welfare sectors were interviewed to gauge their views about child and family sensitive practice and its implications for policy and practice in the AOD field.

    Key Findings: A range of views were expressed. Most were supportive of child and family sensitive practice being implemented within AOD service provision. Issues of role legitimacy were raised by some. Most noted the need for changed policy frameworks, contractual obligations, training, clinical supervision, support, and resourcing to allow incorporation of child and family sensitive practice to be feasible, given other existing demands and requirements on services and workers.

    Implications: Any efforts to develop and implement child and family sensitive practice need to address organisational change and intersectoral relationships. This reflects the changing expectations on the AOD field to include a broader range of responsibilities. The implications of this shift in focus are addressed.

    Conclusion: There is a raft of implications if the AOD field is to extend its traditional role to incorporate child and family sensitive practice. These include, addressing intra and intersectoral barriers, and the provision of appropriate management and organisational support.

    Implications for Practice or Policy: To achieve child and family sensitive practice, the adoption of flexible funding approaches, national minimum data collection standards for information collected about clients’ children by AOD services, training, clinical supervision and the use of champions will be required
    Original languageEnglish
    Number of pages1
    Publication statusPublished - 8 Nov 2013
    EventAustralasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs Conference : Bridging Knowledge and Practice - Brisbane, Australia
    Duration: 24 Nov 201327 Nov 2013


    ConferenceAustralasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs Conference
    Abbreviated titleAPSAD 2013


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