Statistical data on the proportion of children identified as likely to suffer significant harm, cases of substantiated abuse and neglect and the number placed in public care vary between regions and countries, as do placement types and service responses. Comparing the situation in England with that elsewhere and exploring similarities and differences in the approaches adopted to safeguard children from harm allows current policy and practice to be benchmarked against others.
To make meaningful comparisons of data on child death, injury and safeguarding, it is first necessary to ascertain what data are already routinely collected by different countries and how comparable these datasets are.
This report presents the findings from a small scale scoping review undertaken between July and December 2010 to explore some of these issues. The overarching aim of the study is to scope the existing international data on safeguarding children from physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, neglect and exposure to intimate partner violence and from child death and injury.
The objective is to consider how different institutional and cultural approaches to safeguarding children and different forms of provision and support may influence trends in the incidence and nature of abuse and neglect and similarities and differences in the responses of public authorities.
The study focuses on ascertaining the availability of data on preventable child death and injury and safeguarding; and identification of a core set of variables to facilitate exploration of the comparability of these data.