Research has uncovered a number of risk factors or attributes commonly associated with maltreatment. Children in families and environments where these factors exist have a higher probability of experiencing maltreatment.
A greater understanding of risk factors can help professionals working with children and families identify maltreatment and high-risk situations so they can intervene appropriately. It must be emphasized, however, that while certain factors often are present among families where maltreatment occurs, this does not mean that the presence of these factors necessarily lead to child abuse and neglect.
Common factors associated with increased risk of child maltreatment are often categorized as follows:
- Parent or caregiver factors
- Child factors
- Family factors
- Community and environmental factors
- Risk factors for recurrence of child abuse and neglect
- Co-occurring risk factors
Adolescent Risk Factors for Child Maltreatment
Thornberry & Matsuda & Greenman & Augustyn & Henry & Smith & Ireland (2014)
Child Abuse and Neglect, 38(4)
Identifies risk factors that emerge in adolescence and may contribute to child abuse and neglect.
Child Abuse and Neglect: Risk and Protective Factors
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Describes individual and communities factors associated with child abuse and neglect.
United States. Children's Bureau.
Download (PDF - 4,356KB)
Development Services Group, Inc.; Child Welfare Information Gateway
Download (PDF - 234KB)
Order bound (Free)