The increasing growth of racial and ethnic communities and linguistic groups within our population, each with its own cultural traits and child-rearing practices, presents a challenge when responding to allegations of child maltreatment in this country. The systemic response and the children and their families all bring their individual learned patterns of language and culture which must be understood to ensure the safety of children. By understanding, valuing, and incorporating the cultural differences of America’s diverse population and examining one’s own values and beliefs, child maltreatment professionals can support a system that responds appropriately to, and directly serves, the unique needs of populations whose cultures may be different from the prevailing culture.
Discuss the importance of identifying professional, personal, and systemic biases in the child welfare and criminal justice systems.
Identify how people/families from differing cultures might respond to child abuse allegations and the systems involved.
Recognize how professionals can have respectful and healthy conversations with families about their cultural beliefs and practices.