Call for Abstracts: Child Abuse Review Special Issue 2022

Theme: Child protection during the perinatal period: Innovation in assessment and practice

An optimal caregiving environment during the perinatal period is critical for the healthy development of infants. Challenges to optimal development include poor nutrition, a chaotic and stressful environment and, critically, insensitive and unresponsive caregiving. Infants are at higher risk of maltreatment than any other age group and have a higher-than-average risk of being the victims of homicide. Despite their vulnerabilities, infants deemed to be at particular risk are often not given adequate protection within a time frame that is consistent with their developmental needs. Furthermore, an increasing number of infants are being removed at birth due to failures to identify and support pregnant women with recognised risks, many of whom have no specialist input until late in pregnancy.

Increasingly, pre-birth risk assessment guidelines emphasise the importance of determining potential risk to the unborn child with appropriate and timely action being taken during the pre- and post-birth period to support the pregnant and newly delivered mother. Innovations range from specialist posts such as midwives with a specialist child protection role through to multidisciplinary case-loading teams.

This Special Issue invites contributions that involve the evaluation of innovative ways of assessing and supporting pregnant and newly-delivered women with whom there are recognised risks to their infants. We are particularly interested in receiving high quality conceptual and empirical papers that extend current knowledge with clear practice and policy implications.

If you would like to discuss a possible contribution, please contact one of the guest editors:

Important dates:

  • Deadline for submission of Abstracts: 1 July 2021, to: [email protected]
  • Evaluation and notification on Abstracts: 1 August 2021
  • Submission of full Papers: 1 November 2021, at:
  • Final acceptance notification: 1 August 2022
  • Publication: September/October 2022

Papers will be subject to Child Abuse Review’s normal peer review procedures. See Author Guidelines