Managing Child Sexual Abuse Cases is easy to read, flowing consistently over eleven chapters. Corby makes use of subtitles to assist the reader and the material is both logical and relevant. Corby tracks through history the various attitudes and reactions to child sexual abuse, before discussing how current thinking has impacted on current practice... Overall Corby offers the reader interesting opinions on how societal opinion informs our practice. His proposals for improving intervention do much to enhance the ongoing debate on how social workers can improve practice which will benefit the families in the long-term, as well as offer protection in the immediate-term for the children.
Child sexual abuse continues to be one of the most challenging areas of work facing those employed in child care. This book provides a clear account of research undertaken between 1989 and 1993 into social work intervention in 40 cases of child sexual abuse. These high priority cases, which all reached the case conference stage, were drawn from three local authorities in north-west England. The study included interviews with social workers and other professionals, analysis of case records and observation of child protection case conferences. Corby' s writing is, as usual, extremely lucid and easy to read. The accessibility of this book will make it attractive to practitioners, managers, students and academics in social work and related professions. The range of references is extensive and the reader can use this study as an up-to-date sourcebook on child sexual abuse. A central strength of this book is the contextualisation of this research and other studies in the post Cleveland era. The Cleveland inquiry emerges from these pages as the definitive backdrop against which child sexual abuse work has been practised in the 1990s.
Corby's conclusions make disturbing reading. He agrees that if a criterion for 'success' is the prevention of further abuse, then this was largely unsuccessful. However, he is unequivocal in his criticism of the lack of support and therapeutic input offered to children and families following the initial investigation. He also points to the multiple difficulties experienced by the families and reveals that little practical or emotional support was offered. This book should sit on the shelves of managers and social workers. Many children and families who struggle with allegations of sexual abuse need support. Management of allegations is not enough.