Definition of neglect
Difficulty in gathering evidence about neglect in order to inform practice lies
in the complexity surrounding its definition. Neglect has been described as a
mulch-faceted concept (Stone, 1998), and its non-unitary nature has given
rise to differences in the way that it is defined within research and practice.
The lack of consensus regarding its definition has impacted on
understanding of not only the scale of the problem, but also its causes, its
assessment, and approaches to intervening to prevent or reduce its adverse
Although there are many different definitions of neglect, one common
aspect of definitions is their emphasis on neglect as an act of omission.
Unlike physical or sexual abuse, in which specific abusive acts are directed
towards a child, neglect is typically defined by the absence of provision for a
child’s basic needs (Gough, 2005). However, beyond the consensus that
neglect involves acts of omission, definitions of neglect vary in significant
ways, including differences in the breadth and scope of what is considered
to constitute a ‘basic need’ and differences in what are considered to be
adequate standards of provision to meet them.
to be continue .......