Child maltreatment and criminal convictions in youth: the role of gender, ethnicity and placement experiences in an Australian population

Malvaso, Catia G., Delfabbro, Paul H., and Day, Andrew (2017) Child maltreatment and criminal convictions in youth: the role of gender, ethnicity and placement experiences in an Australian population. Children and Youth Services Review, 73. pp. 57-65.

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Abstract

A number of previous studies have shown that out-of-home care (OHC) placement experiences can influence the pathway from maltreatment to offending, and that these pathways may differ depending on gender and ethnic backgrounds. Even though Australian welfare and justice systems are unique in terms of the over-representation of Indigenous (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) young people, there have been few Australian longitudinal studies that explore the role of placement experiences in examinations of the maltreatment-offending association. The present study uses linked child protection and youth justice data for 17,671 young people and aims to provide insight into the way ethnicity, as well as gender, moderates the association between maltreatment, placement in OHC and youth convictions. The data were analyzed using logistic regression and the findings varied systematically depending on the type of conviction examined. There was some strong evidence that gender, ethnicity and placement factors moderated the relationship between maltreatment and convictions in general, and for violent convictions more specifically. Interaction effects revealed that placement experiences were more consequential for female than for male youth, but less consequential for Indigenous than for non-Indigenous youth. A one-size-fits-all approach to understanding, treating and preventing the consequences of child maltreatment could not be considered the most appropriate best practice given the gender- and ethnic-specific pathways found in this study.

Item ID: 48993
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1873-7765
Keywords: child maltreatment; out-of-home care; youth offending; convictions
Date Deposited: 05 Jul 2017 05:45
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1602 Criminology > 160201 Causes and Prevention of Crime @ 100%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9404 Justice and the Law > 940402 Crime Prevention @ 100%
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