Title

Contribution of Illicit/Non-Prescribed Marijuana and Hard-Drug Use to Child-Abuse and Neglect Potential while Considering Social Desirability

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

4-24-2018

Publication Title

British Journal of Social Work

Volume

49

Issue

1

First page number:

77

Last page number:

95

Abstract

Illicit drug use by mothers has been indicated to increase child abuse and neglect. However, investigators have not assessed the relative contribution of particular drugs on child-abuse and neglect potential using validated measures with collateral reports. This study compares the contribution of marijuana and hard-drug use to child-abuse and neglect potential in mothers referred to behavioural treatment by child-protective services. Reports of marijuana and hard-drug use by mothers were three times higher than reports of the mothers' marijuana and hard-drug use by family or friends, and marijuana- and hard-drug-use reports by mothers were more consistent with urinalysis testing than their significant others. Regression analyses showed mothers' marijuana and hard-drug-use reports contributed to their potential to abuse and neglect irrespective of socially desirable responding, stress and socio-demographic variables. Reports of mothers' marijuana and hard-drug use by significant others were not associated with mothers' child-abuse and neglect potential. Thus, mothers' self-reports of marijuana and hard-drug use appear to provide greater utility in the prediction of child abuse and neglect, as compared to reports from their significant others. Future recommendations and study limitations are discussed in light of these results.

Keywords

Child abuse and neglect; Collateral reporting; Hard drug; Marijuana

Disciplines

Behavior and Behavior Mechanisms

Language

English

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