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Title: Voice against violence : young people's experiences of domestic abuse policy-making in Scotland
Author: Houghton, Claire
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2013
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This study, undertaken from a feminist and children’s rights perspective, emerged from the growing body of literature on children’s experiences of domestic abuse, the challenges of childhood studies and the opportunities arising out of the changed socio-political landscape of Scotland since devolution. It examines, with children and young people experiencing domestic abuse, their own solutions to improve help for children and young people, their perspectives on real and tokenistic participation in Scotland’s policy-making and, their self-defined ethical and participatory standards to make sustained participation possible. Combining innovation in methodology and co-production of new knowledge with children and young people, the researcher contributes the three E’s of Enjoyment, Empowerment and Emancipation to ethical principles focussing on safety, and recommends a new ethical approach to consent that recognises children’s agency in their own lives and in deciding their own best interests. A Participatory Action Research Process over five years with 9 of the 48 young people, resulted in young people themselves becoming change agents to begin to tackle the issues that emerged from the wider study’s qualitative first part, also action-orientated through children’s political activism. For example, the lack of help, awareness and stigma attached to domestic abuse was tackled through their production of a public online awareness raising campaign and film; their critique of the previously most revered of services, Women's Aid specialist support, resulted in a multi-million fund and their analysis became the conditions of grant; the lack of respect for and inclusion of young people in policy-making they challenged through defining their terms of engagement which are explored here, sanctioned and legitimised by their emerging 'critical friendship' with Ministers. Unusually the young people participating in the study made a significant impact on Scotland’s domestic abuse policy and practice, as well as repositioning children and young people in the democratic process.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare