Family Structure, Substance Use, and Child Protective Services Involvement: Exploring Child Outcomes and Services


By bhadmin February 2, 2021

Using data from the National Survey on Child and Adolescent Well-Being (Nā€‰=ā€‰5,501), this study explored caregiver substance use, family structure, and child well-being. Findings demonstrated that children of single mothers who use substances had higher externalized behavior problems than children of mothers with secondary caregivers in the home and who did not use substances. Children demonstrated more positive behavior and social skills in families without substance use. Single mothers with substance use accessed the most mental and behavioral health services and child welfare casework services compared to mothers who had available secondary caregivers and who did not use substances. Overall, this study demonstrated links among family structure, substance use, and child protective services involvement.

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