Child Indicators Research

, Volume 9, Issue 4, pp 1029–1041 | Cite as

Responding to Child Maltreatment: a Framework for Mapping Child Protection Agencies

  • Nico Trocmé
  • Bree Akesson
  • Andreas JudEmail author


While there is a growing number of international population surveys about rates of child maltreatment there is much less data on legal, health and social services responses to maltreatment. Agency surveys are a cost effective method for assessing this response in countries where there is limited administrative data available about child maltreatment reports, investigations and services. The first step in conducting such survey is to map out the network of agencies and organizations tasked with responding to child maltreatment, as part of a multi-stage sampling strategy to identify a representative sample of child maltreatment reports and investigations. This endeavor can be complex as a diverse universe of agencies are involved in protecting victimized children and supporting their families—government-run child protective services, child protection teams at hospitals, not-for-profit helplines, psychotherapists at private practices, and community-based child welfare organizations, to name a few examples. This paper offers a framework for mapping child protection along the dimensions of levels of authority, functions and processes. Beyond high-income countries with well-established child protection systems, it gives special consideration to informal structures such as councils of community leaders and non-governmental organizations’ consortiums in low-income countries.


Child protection Child protection agencies Service provision 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social WorkMcGill UniversityMontrealCanada
  2. 2.Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social WorkWilfrid Laurier UniversityKitchenerCanada
  3. 3.School of Social WorkLucerne University of Applied Sciences and ArtsLucerneSwitzerland

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