Aug 7, 2023
Edwards, T., McManamna, N., & King, B. (2023). The
absence of language: a critical race discourse analysis of Ontario's child welfare legislation and the impacts on Black families. Child Abuse & Neglect, 143, 106249. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chiabu.2023.106249
Background: The research pertaining to racial disparities for Black families in child welfare is relatively limited in Canada. Recent research reveals that the overrepresentation of Black families in Canadian child welfare systems typically begins at the reporting or investigation stage and continues throughout the child welfare service and decision-making continuum. This research is occurring against the backdrop of increasing public acknowledgement of Canada's historic anti-Black policy-making and institutional relationships to Black communities. Though there is increased awareness about anti-Black racism, there has been limited exploration of the connection between anti-Black racism in child welfare legislation and how this policy generates disparities for Black families in both child welfare involvement and outcomes - this paper seeks to fill this gap in knowledge.
Objective: The objective of this paper is to explore the entrenchment of anti-Black racism within the child welfare system by critically assessing the language and absence of language within the guiding legislative and implementation policies.