Family engagement in the perinatal period and infant rights

Child Welfare. 2011;90(4):79-97.


The meaning of human rights for children is a contested issue; the notion of rights for unborn babies poses additional complexity. Drawing on data from a prospective case study of a specialist drug and alcohol obstetric provider and the statutory child protection service, this article discusses family engagement within a child-rights framework, and demonstrates how adherence to the "best interests" principle, in the absence of an appropriate service provision, excludes vulnerable mother/infant dyads from drawing on extended family support.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child Advocacy*
  • Child Welfare*
  • Family*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Mothers
  • Pregnancy
  • Prospective Studies
  • Social Support
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Substance-Related Disorders*
  • Victoria
  • Young Adult