Using racial disproportionality and disparity: Indicators to measure child welfare concerns

Clare Tilbury, June Thoburn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)


This article examines the utility of racial disproportionality and disparity data to measure the performance and outcomes of child welfare systems. Given the differential patterns of entry, exit and service responses for black, indigenous and ethnic minority children in many child welfare systems around the world, the conceptualisation of both quality and outcomes should take account of their needs. Clarity is required about which dimensions of effectiveness are measured by racial disparity indicators, in order to design strategies to address its causes and consequences. The article discusses how data on racial disproportionality and disparity can be used, as part of a suite of performance indicators, to highlight issues regarding the quality, equity and accessibility of child welfare services.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1101-1106
Number of pages6
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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