Good practice in safeguarding unaccompanied and asylum seeking children

Westwood, Joanne Louise orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-7560-1391 (2016) Good practice in safeguarding unaccompanied and asylum seeking children. In: Safeguarding Black Children: Good Practice in Child Protection. Jessica Kingsley Publishers (JKP), London and Philadelphia, pp. 239-252. ISBN 978-1-84905-569-7

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What do social workers who work with unaccompanied and asylum seeking children need to know in order to ensure that these potentially vulnerable children are safeguarded, whilst also promoting their rights and interests? Who do we mean when we talk about unaccompanied and asylum seeking children? Beginning with some points about definitions this chapter presents recent statistics and then outlines the key policy framework which informs social work practice and interventions with black unaccompanied children and asylum seeking children and young people coming to, or living in the UK. Evidence from research carried out in the UK and beyond and from theories of childhood, child development and culture can help us to develop our understanding of how best to intervene and safeguard those children and young people who do come here. There is also good evidence from practice that informs and shapes our interventions, acknowledging the barriers, tensions and contexts which social work practice contends with in order to effectively safeguard these children and young people. At the end of this chapter you should be able to reflect on the potential interventions available to you as a practitioner working with UASC and reflect on how culturally attuned your practice is, and could be.

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