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Child Participation in the Swedish Child Protection System: Child-Friendly Focus but Limited Child Influence on Outcomes
Stockholm University, Faculty of Law, Department of Law.
2018 (English)In: The International Journal of Children's Rights, ISSN 0927-5568, E-ISSN 1571-8182, Vol. 26, no 1, p. 136-158Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article deals with children's right to participation through legal representatives in the Swedish child protection system, with a specific focus on if and how children are given the possibility to influence decisions made about them in this context. An overall question is whether the regulation is clear as to what should be achieved when it comes to participation for children and what weight children's wishes and views should be given. Based on a critical legal analysis it is shown that the Swedish system, although having a clear 'child-friendly image', is problematic in both these aspects. At present, child participation in the Swedish system is emphasised in theory and in goal-oriented statutes, while at the same time, children to a large extent are 'legally protected' from involvement, not the least from influencing decisions made. It is suggested that, for the Swedish child protection system to truly meet its "child-friendly" image and honestly look into how to become more child-inclusive, there is a need to re-think how to best achieve participation for children and also clarify what participation is intended to mean in practice.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 26, no 1, p. 136-158
Keywords [en]
child participation, child protection, legal representatives, critical children's rights studies, Sweden
National Category
Law and Society
Research subject
Legal Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-151061DOI: 10.1163/15718182-02601002ISI: 000427253400008OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-151061DiVA, id: diva2:1181165
Funder
Torsten Söderbergs stiftelseAvailable from: 2018-02-08 Created: 2018-02-08 Last updated: 2018-04-03Bibliographically approved

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