Bio: Lenore Olsen is an academic researcher from Rhode Island College. The author has contributed to research in topics: Substance abuse & Neglect. The author has an hindex of 8, co-authored 13 publications receiving 390 citations.
TL;DR: Data from the National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect are used to examine the maltreatment of adolescents and adolescents are compared with younger children to identify differences in the form of abuse and neglect they experience and the reporting of that mistreatment.
Abstract: Data from the National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect are used to examine the maltreatment of adolescents. The discussion considers the type of maltreatment adolescents experience and the response of service agencies. Adolescents are compared with younger children to identify differences in the form of abuse and neglect they experience and the reporting of that mistreatment. Implications of the results are noted for programs serving youth who have been abused and neglected.
TL;DR: The issues that face child welfare and substance abuse treatment professionals as they attempt to address these new challenges are examined and strategies for forging new alliances and closing gaps in service delivery are recommended.
Abstract: During the past decade an unprecedented number of single-parent families entered the child welfare system because the mother had an identified substance abuse problem. Affecting as many as 80 percent of all cases of substantiated abuse and neglect (Child Welfare League of America, 1990), substance abuse is now cited as one of the three most common reasons for children entering care, along with abuse and neglect and economic stress (Children's Defense Fund, 1992). Substance abuse is regarded as a key factor in the recent growth of out-of-home placements (Child Welfare League of America, 1990). These trends have forced the child welfare field and substance abuse treatment providers to take a new look at the needs of parents with problems of chemical dependence and their children. As Halfon so aptly noted, this has meant "treading into an area that has been an incredible morass of conflicting policies and inadequate services" (cited in Child Welfare League of America, 1990, p. 24). This article examines these conflicts and problems in service delivery, looking first at the mandate framing child welfare practice and at issues in substance abuse treatment that affect this population. The article discusses specific practice and policy issues that must be addressed if the problem of chemical dependency is to be dealt with effectively and recommends ways to strengthen the delivery of services to this client population. Child Welfare Mandate Current child welfare practice is driven to a large extent by the Adoption Assistance and Child Welfare Act of 1980 (P.L. 98-617), which mandated that families be strengthened through services to prevent placement and, when placement was necessary, reunified as quickly as possible. It required that child welfare agencies make reasonable efforts to support families and to keep them together. The law builds in timelines for decision making through six-month case reviews and 18-month dispositional reviews. At the same time, child welfare agencies are also required through federal and state law to protect children from harm and ensure their safety. Thus, child welfare professionals must constantly struggle to find ways to strengthen families while also protecting children. When chemical dependency enters the picture, these mandates become difficult to balance, for the cycle of recovery does not always mesh with the child's needs or the timelines for child welfare decision making. To complicate matters further, these mandates must be met within a service delivery system that is woefully underfunded and where families' needs often extend far beyond the scope of what service providers can offer. Substance Abuse Treatment When mothers are referred by the child welfare system for substance abuse treatment, they are referred to a system that has historically focused on treating individual problems and that has been dominated by treatment models favoring the needs of men. Although gains have been made in the availability of services, still less than 1 percent of federal antidrug money is targeted toward drug treatment for women and even less toward pregnant and parenting women (Child Welfare League of America, 1990). The Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Services Block Grant program currently sets aside only 10 percent of its funds for the treatment of women (Child Welfare League of America, 1992). Treatment slots for pregnant women are virtually nonexistent in many communities (Gustavsson, 1991). Residential treatment programs, which are a necessary component of any comprehensive service delivery system (Barth, 1993; Child Welfare League of America, 1992; DeLeon & Jainchill, 1991; Straussner, 1989), pose special challenges for women with primary child care responsibilities and are equally scarce. To effectively serve chemically dependent women, experts have called for nothing less than a paradigm shift that would refocus services on the needs of the family and on the broader social and economic needs of women in treatment (Child Welfare League of America, 1990, 1992; Daghestani, 1988; Finkelstein, 1994; Reed, 1987; Zimmerman, 1988). …
TL;DR: A new instrument assessing risk in substance abuse-affected families is presented and it assesses those dimensions of substance abuse that make it more difficult for parents to meet the basic needs of their children.
Abstract: A new instrument assessing risk in substance abuse-affected families is presented. The instrument assesses those dimensions of substance abuse that make it more difficult for parents to meet the basic needs of their children. It also assesses those components of the parent's environment that may increase risk to the family's well-being. Information is presented on the instrument's reliability and validity. The article concludes with a discussion of the issues involved in assessing the risk for child abuse and neglect in families where there is an identified substance abuse problem.
TL;DR: In this paper, a panel study of an MSW research curriculum was conducted to evaluate the effect of integrating a practice orientation into the research courses and found that students became more favorable in their attitudes toward research and became more knowledgeable about research methods and statistics.
Abstract: A panel study of an MSW research curriculum was conducted to evaluate the effect of integrating a practice orientation into the research courses The study followed a cohort of 60 students throughout their tenure in the program Information on students' knowledge, attitudes, and experiences with research was collected at four points in time The findings indicate that students became more favorable in their attitudes toward research and that they became more knowledgeable about research methods and statistics Students also reported that they planned to engage in activities that are characteristic of empirically-based practice These findings support the curriculum changes of the past decade that have moved to close the gap between research and practice
TL;DR: This paper proposed a risk/protective theoretical perspective grounded in ecological and developmental contextualist theories to promote positive youth development and prevent problem behaviors, which is illustrated with the success of Wisconsin Youth Futures, a campus/community partnership that has built 18 community coalitions.
Abstract: Although scientific knowledge of youth development has grown dramatically over the last 2 decades, theoretical frameworks for translating research into more supportive environments for youth have lagged. This article proposes a risk/protective theoretical perspective grounded in ecological and developmental contextualist theories. Principles extrapolated from the theory are illustrated with the success of Wisconsin Youth Futures, a campus/community partnership that has built 18 community coalitions to promote positive youth development and prevent problem behaviors. Because adolescence is marked by dramatic changes in the individual and his or her relationships with significant others and society (Steinberg, 1991), it is often considered a critical period, a time of magnificent promise and insidious risk (Lerner, 1995; McCord, 1990; Newcomb, Maddahian, & Bentler, 1986). Almost one half of America's youth aged 10 to 17 are estimated to abuse alcohol and other substances, fail in school, commit crimes, or engage in early unprotected intercourse (Dryfoos, 1990b). Preventing these problematic behaviors and promoting positive youth development is an excellent investment in the future of our nation that can be postponed only at great cost to society (Committee on Economic Development, Research, and Policy, 1987); these costs can be measured not only in terms of personal suffering and lost potential, but also in such private and public expenditures as law enforcement, health care, and rehabilitation (Hawkins, Catalano, & Miller, 1992). What a tragic paradox that public confidence in its ability to do anything to help youth has hit bottom, just when our scientific knowledge of youth problems has reached an all-time high (Higgins, 1988a; Murray & Perry, 1987; Schorr, 1988). Although gaps still remain in our scientific understanding of these issues, the widest gap may be between what is known and what is applied, specifically, the lack of widely agreed upon theoretical frameworks that can integrate findings and guide efforts to translate research into action (Murray & Perry, 1987; Roosa, 1991; Schorr, 1988). Too often, prevention efforts are based on common sense, good intentions, myths about adolescent development, and the heroic efforts of committed staff (Roosa, 1991). Yet our most effective prevention efforts are based on strong theoretical and empirical foundations (Price, Cowen, Lorion, & Ramos-McKay, 1988) that shape program conceptualization, design, implementation, evaluation, and institutionalization (Hughes, 1994). Although several paradigms exist for addressing youth issues, two have gained prominence. First, one of the most successful prevention models in the last two decades has been the epidemiological risk-focused model used to prevent heart and lung disease (Hawkins, Catalano, & Miller, 1992). Informing people about the risks for heart disease (e.g., smoking, inactivity, high-fat diet) and encouraging lifestyle changes actually reduced the incidence of heart disease. Proponents have argued that human development, like heart disease, is influenced by multiple risk processes, and that taking steps to reduce or eliminate these risks holds promise for preventing youth problem behaviors as well (Bronfenbrenner, 1986; Hawkins, Catalano, & Miller, 1992; Segal, 1983). Yet a second model recently gaining prominence is the resiliency or protective process approach, which suggests that we must move beyond a focus on risks to create conditions that facilitate positive youth development. Proponents of this model (Benard, 1993a, 1993b, 1993c) cite studies of children who live in adverse circumstances (e.g., poverty, neglect, war, and parental alcoholism or criminality), yet grow up to lead successful adult lives (Garmezy, 1983; Rutter, 1979, 1983, 1987; Werner, 1990; Werner & Smith, 1982). Even with glaring disadvantages and the most adverse conditions, it is unusual for more than a third (Werner, 1992) to a half of children (Rutter, 1985) to succumb to serious disabilities or persistent disorders. …
TL;DR: It is concluded that the use of illicit drugs is common among pregnant women regardless of race and socio-economic status and if legally mandated reporting is to be free of racial or economic bias, it must be based on objective medical criteria.
Abstract: Florida is one of several states that have sought to protect newborns by requiring that mothers known to have used alcohol or illicit drugs during pregnancy be reported to health authorities. To estimate the prevalence of substance abuse by pregnant women, we collected urine samples from all pregnant women who enrolled for prenatal care at any of the five public health clinics in Pinellas County, Florida (n = 380), or at any of 12 private obstetrical offices in the county (n = 335); each center was studied for a one-month period during the first half of 1989. Toxicologic screening for alcohol, opiates, cocaine and its metabolites, and cannabinoids was performed blindly with the use of an enzyme-multiplied immunoassay technique; all positive results were confirmed. Among the 715 pregnant women we screened, the overall prevalence of a positive result on the toxicologic tests of urine was 14.8 percent; there was little difference in prevalence between the women seen at the public clinics (16.3 perce...
TL;DR: Logistic regression analysis determined that experiencing any substantiated maltreatment during adolescence increases the odds of arrest, general and violent offending, and illicit drug use in young adulthood, even controlling for sociodemographic characteristics and prior levels of problem behavior.
Abstract: Statement of problem Childhood maltreatment is known to be a risk factor for a range of later problems, but much less is known about adolescent maltreatment. The present study aims to investigate the impact of adolescent maltreatment on antisocial behavior, while controlling for prior levels of problem behavior as well as sociodemographic characteristics. Methods Data are from the Rochester Youth Development Study, a cohort study of the development of problem behaviors in a sample of 1,000 urban youth followed from age 13 into adulthood. Subjects include 68% African American, 17% Hispanic, and 15% White youth. This analysis includes a maximum of 884 subjects, of whom 9.3% had substantiated maltreatment reports in adolescence. Among the maltreated adolescents, 14 experienced sex abuse, 36 experienced physical abuse, and 32 were neglected or emotionally abused. Outcomes explored in late adolescence (ages 16–18) and young adulthood (ages 20–22) include arrest, self-reported general and violent offending, and illicit drug use. Control variables include prior levels of these outcomes as well as sociodemographic characteristics like poverty, parent education, and caregiver changes. Results Logistic regression analysis determined that experiencing any substantiated maltreatment during adolescence increases the odds of arrest, general and violent offending, and illicit drug use in young adulthood, even controlling for sociodemographic characteristics and prior levels of problem behavior. Different types of adolescent maltreatment, including neglect, appear to produce similar adverse behavioral consequences. Conclusions Adolescent maltreatment necessitates increased attention in view of its enduring and potentially wide-ranging impact on the life span.
TL;DR: This paper used national survey data to assess the relative merits of three dominant frameworks in criminological theory: social control, social learning and social-psychological strain, and criminogenic emotions likely to arise among maltreated adolescents.
Abstract: A substantial body of research indicates that adolescent maltreatment, like child maltreatment, is associated with elevated levels of delinquency. Criminologists typically account for this relationship by invoking one of three dominant frameworks in criminological theory: “Social control” theorists contend that adolescent maltreatment disrupts important delinquency-inhibiting ties; “social learning” theorists emphasize the deviant values and patterns of behavior that are learned from those that administer maltreatment; whereas “social-psychological strain” theorists emphasize the criminogenic emotions likely to arise among maltreated adolescents, such as anger and resentment. This study uses national survey data to assess the relative merits of these competing explanations. The results provide limited support for all three explanations. The findings are discussed in terms of the need for a more general and complex understanding of the adolescent maltreatment-delinquency relationship.