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Literature Review Presenting the Analysis of Prevalence of Abuse and Policy Making

The resource highlights the child abuse and neglect that is highly prevalent in many countries. Prevalence is generally a phenomenon describing the mental conditions of the children in the country and the experiences they have faced in any sector. Child abuse is generally defined by presenting a complex set of negative behaviours such as sexual, physical and emotional harassment, which impact the children's brain development, making them behind from others. Australia is one such developed country where child abuse and neglect cases are of higher prevalence. The non-accidental but physically aggressive acts towards the children can include strangling, slapping, scalding, punching, shoving, and suffocating the children, leading to strict punishment to the harassing people. Neglect is another term that refers to the failure to provide resources necessary for healthy children’s development. Some of these children's neglecting behaviours are inadequate food, shelter, hygiene, and medical facilities provision (CFCA Resource Sheet, 2017). Various child protection policies have been incorporated to enhance the outcomes developing the children growth.

The literature review aims to identify the child abuse and the outcomes that occur due to the abuse in the native area. The provided sources are researched to maintain the application of child protection policies to minimise child abuse.

Prevalence cases of abuse and neglect among children


Measure of abuse

Rate of prevalence

Studied by

Age between 15 to 18 years

Intentional physical force against children

males, 6.7.

females, 9.9

(Moore et al. 2015).

18+ years,

deliberate physical injury

M: 9.7

F: 10.7

Australian Bureau of Statistics (2012).

<15 to <18 years

pattern of failure of development of wellbeing in health or education

M: 2.0

F: 3.5%

(Moore et al. 2015).

Despite the fact that Australian children face several issues related to abuse and negligence, higher incidences of child abuse have been seen among the indigenous children, who are far away from their homes. The cause of the high difference between indigenous people to the native children of Australia regarded their linguistic behaviour, poor background, cultural differences and partiality among the native and aboriginal places (Moore et al., 2015).

Several child protection policy and practices have provided the child care concerns are substantiated with relevant statuary departments in which appropriate service supports are required to maintain their rights of liveliness and authority under the framework of child protection orders (CPO) (Farrell, 2004).

  1. Child protection system:Reducing mental depression among the children studying in Australia can be beneficial through several interventions’ strategies and prevention programs. WHO has been focusing on the issues related to physical and mental illness for several decades and trying to intervene in the new technologies to overcome the barriers that occur in Infront of mental development. the child protection services have been accomplished based upon three systems; primary prevention, secondary prevention, and tertiary prevention. These all the three systems of protection services are involved in focusing on preventive activities targeting the whole population by developing the awareness, increasing the parental and personal skills, reducing the maltreatment activities in societies. Such systems promote multisectoral and psychological intervention that promotes the mental health development of the children by reducing the social competencies behavioural and educational attainment. Under various studies, children who were suffered from any type of mental illness due to abusive behaviours were monitored and showed significant results in improvement through children counselling to combat and reduce anxiety, depression and stress level among children and adolescents (Bernaras et al., 2019).
  2. The services provided to children that were put out of their homes: The children, who were from the geographically remote areas, were on high substantiations with a rate of three times than the children of major cities. However, the major focus has been on child protection services protecting their survivability. From 2016 to 2020, the 3.8% of children receiving the protection under the Australian policies of child protection was increased that carried the number of approximately 168,300 children. The legal child and protection orders providing the protection department to the children come under the child’s welfare responsibility, which also increased by 11 per cent from 2016 to 2020. for the children who were away from their homes were provided with the facilities with placements and the apartments where they could live and remain stable. The children were provided with financial support and with supportive concerns. The care to children out of home increased from 43,100 to 46,000 from the year 2017 to 2020, making an increment of 8% of services (Government of Australia, 2021). The article has provided enough of the conformations and left no gaps about the scope and themes of services, which are necessary to be provided in the institutions.
  3. Child protection report policies(under mandatory reporting law) aim to recognise and then minimise the impacts of child abuse. The name of the report is Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (RCIRCSA), which was first developed to know the children’s behaviours under certain circumstances. RCIRCSA is the largest commission considering the public queries about child abuses and the lifelong intergenerational losses that children face due to the extreme abusive behaviour of people. Moreover, the commission forces the implications to be taken into consideration to prevent child abuse in any type of occupation for their safer and protective future (McPhillips, 2018). The child protection report named RCIRCSA proved to possess the strength-based analysis that how children pose to the risks of abuse and what policies can be consider to improve their mental conditions.
  4. Child protection orientation in Australia: Child protection services do not remain the same throughout the world as it considerably varies in different countries. Examples of international models in child protection services include child protection orientation andfamily service orientations. Both the orientations oppose each other. However, the framework of policies and jurisdictions is made taking a combination of both orientations. Child protection orientation refers to the power of child protection from harm, which may be separated from the family support services. However, the family protection orientation is a conflict stemming from social or psychological difficulties embedded with public health services. Hence, the paper focuses on the main approach of child protection services, reflecting the needs and the required outcomes of the cultural and institutional contexts (Price-Robertson et al., 2017). Moreover, the resource provides brief information about the international approaches that provide child protection services to the country.

Various theories related to the child abuse and protection policies for children development are interconnected, as these all the theories are supposed to bring the interventions and practices by incorporating the rights and powers for the children welfare (Grummer?Strawn et al., 2017).

  • The child protection theory of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander childrenhas reported the abusive cases of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children with a rate of 55.1 children with a higher rate of disproportionality. On the other hand, several views about children rights among Australian children showed the lower incidences of disproportionality among 7.7% only. Hence, the report suggested that there are no interests of conflicts and provided the knowledge that aboriginal children required special attention and interventions (Fernandez & Atwool, 2013).
  • Psychological Theorythat challenges their powers and rights representing the negative effects of child abuse. The abusive behaviour against the children brings several psychological abnormalities deteriorating their life quality.
  • Attachment Theorydetermines the negative views that child experiences in childhood, which play the crucial role in affecting their psychology throughout the life. the negligence at early stage can pose the burden of avoidance and disorganisation on the children life.
  • Biological theoryis the next life that not only affects the psychological concepts of children, but also impacts their biological and then genetic behaviour, which can pass to their next generations because of the hormonal dispositions. Hence, the skills of the children get deteriorate making them inferior.

Understanding the concepts of all the theories, it can be stated that various theories can be considered to determine the negative effects of child abuse on their lives and their offspring’s affecting the growth of whole socialization. (Tilbury et al. 2007). Different articles and researches about child protection systems have defined the issues about the child protection resulting in child abuse in different manners, such as some of the articles defines child abuse as a separation from their families, whereas another article suggests that child abuse is a negative behaviour of the people that they show towards the children affecting their brain developments. Among most cases, the concepts of brain development theories have suggested that indigenous students are at higher risks of child abuse due to different aspects, including colour, domestic violence, racism and family background (Aragbuwa, 2021). The native people consider the indigenous people as the exploited people, which is why more cases of child abuse can be seen among the indigenous people. A study that suggested by talking to 17 indigenous students, 10 children were mentally depressed due to the negative attitude of the native students, loneliness, homelessness, linguistic differences and physical permeance. Again, a 12-month study of Australian students suggested that approximately 41,400 students (2% of overall children) are prone to suicide in Australia due to the high-risk factors associated with mental development (Zubrick et al., 2016). No weaknesses have been identified in showing the drawbacks of these theories, which provide the framework of negative impacts of child abuse, needing the accomplishment of policies to develop the children welfare.

Child Protection Policy and Practices

The mandatory report legislation provides the data of specific types of occupations and the suspected child abuse occurring in such occupations. The mandatory report requires the legislative grounds to provide the child protection services, interventions and classifications of abusive behaviour against children under age 18. The provided resource has provided a critical analysis over the childhood abuse and the protection policies through the mandatory reporting legislation, and the interventions which can be provided to reduce the child abuse after analysing the impact on children development (Home, n.d.). The engagement of policy in providing child protection services are not limited to Australia only but are also expanded to Canada, Sweden, Belgium and the Gaza Strip. The Statutory government departments operate specific child protection services that include three main components of services, including intake, investigation and case management.

Intake is generally regarded as the telephone-based response against the suspected maltreatment to know whether the report is concerned in a mandated area to protect the child. The response also includes the information related to the telephone-based type of risk, risk assessment and primary interventions to warrant the further investigation of the claims (Price-Robertson et al., 2017). The investigations to gather the knowledge about the case enquiry is considered as the secondary phase of child protection called investigation. The investigating team tends to crate the case investigation plan regarding the substantiality of the allegation and the degree of child risks that children faced. The final component of the framework is regarded as case management, which is determined by the necessity of statutory involvement of the service providers to encounter child risk. The case management plan involves the agreement and responses, which are made under a specific plan to ensure the children’s safety (Gypen et al., 2017). The aim of this paper is to identify the law determining the charges or sentences against the people that harass or physically/mentally torture the children. The paper is quite similar to the article of  Home, C. In A, as in both the papers, authors identification of the type of child abuse and the types of punishes that can provide to the people causing physical violence among the children.


The estimated cases of child abuse among the native and indigenous children in Australia were found at a range from 5 to 18 %. More prevalence was aiming the indigenous people due to their cultural, linguistic, and locality differences. Examples of abusive behaviours against children include punching, pushing, scalding and strangling. However, to alleviate children’s abuse and neglects, recent research has shown effective attention. Various preventive measures through the policies and legislations in Australian institutions have included several interventions and prevention programs aimed to reduce mental trauma and depression among children. A report named RCIRCSA was developed considering the child protections against the extreme abusive behaviours generally in the educational and health institutions. From 2016 to 2020, various amendments were made in the Australian policies and laws to provide effective services to Australian children. The children who lived away from their homes, those who lived in institutional apartments or with lower backgrounds, were the main focus of the laws, which were undergone by the Australian welfare policies of care and services. A significant increment (of approximately 11%) was seen in health benefits to the children. Hence, various articles have been researched that have provided enough information regarding the effectiveness of the Australian policies and services to improve the outcomes of the children’s health conditions.


Aragbuwa, A., (2021). A standard reading of selected online readers’ comments on domestic violence against men in Nigeria. Men and Masculinities, 24(3), 451-467. 

Australian Bureau of Statistics., (2012). Health outside major cities. Australian Social Trends.[email protected]/Lookup/4102.0Main+Features30Mar+2011 

Bernaras, E., Jaureguizar, J., & Garaigordobil, M., (2019). Child and adolescent depression: a review of theories, evaluation instruments, prevention programs, and treatments. Frontiers in Psychology, 10, 543. 

CFCA Resource Sheet., (2017). The prevalence of child abuse and neglect. 

Farrell, A., (2004). Child protection policy perspectives and reform of Australian legislation. Child Abuse Review: Journal of the British Association for the Study and Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect, 13(4), 234-245. 

Fernandez, E., & Atwool, N, (2013). Child protection and out of home care: Policy, practice, and research connections Australia and New Zealand. Psychosocial Intervention, 22(3), 175-184. 

Government of Australia., (2021). Child protection. 

Grummer?Strawn, L. M., Zehner, E., Stahlhofer, M., Lutter, C., Clark, D., Sterken, E., & WHO/UNICEF NetCode., (2017). New World Health Organization guidance helps protect breastfeeding as a human right. Maternal & child nutrition, 13(4), e12491. 

Gypen, L., Vanderfaeillie, J., De Maeyer, S., Belenger, L., & Van Holen, F., (2017). Outcomes of children who grew up in foster care: Systematic-review. Children and Youth Services Review, 76, 74-83. 

Home, C. F. C. A., (n.d.). What is child abuse and neglect?. 

McPhillips, K., (2018). The Royal Commission investigates child sexual abuse: Uncovering cultures of sexual violence in the Catholic church. In Rape Culture, Gender Violence, and Religion (pp. 53-71). Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. 

Moore, S. E., Scott, J. G., Ferrari, A. J., Mills, R., Dunne, M. P., Erskine, H. E., & Norman, R. E., (2015). Burden attributable to child maltreatment in Australia. Child Abuse & Neglect, 48, 208-220. 

Price-Robertson, R., Bromfield, L., & Lamont, A., (2014). International approaches to child protection: What can Australia learn?. 

Tilbury, C. L. A. I. R. E., Osmond, J. E. N. N. I. F. E. R., Wilson, S., & Clark, J., (2007). Good practice in child protection. New South Wales: Pearson Education Australia. 

Zubrick, S. R., Hafekost, J., Johnson, S. E., Lawrence, D., Saw, S., Sawyer, M., & Buckingham, W. J., (2016). Self-harm: prevalence estimates from the second Australian child and adolescent survey of mental health and wellbeing. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 50(9), 911-921. 

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