Caregiver Drug Use and Arrest as Correlates of Child Trauma Exposure

Michele Staton-Tindall, Ginny Sprang, James Clark

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


This study proposed to determine the prevalence of substance use and drug-related arrests among caregivers of children referred to Child Protective Services (CPS), examine the relationship between substance use and arrests among caregivers, and examine the main effects and interaction of substance use and arrests in predicting child trauma exposure. Secondary data was collected from CPS files for a randomly selected group of 1127 children. Findings indicated that rates of caregiver substance misuse and arrests were higher than the general population, which was expected. When controlling for demographic and other variables, there was a main effect of substance use and arrests on child trauma exposure, but no significant interaction. Implications for caregivers engaged in substance use and/or involvement with the criminal justice system are discussed, as well as clinical and research implications for children exposed to trauma related to caregiver behaviors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)265-282
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Evidence-Based Social Work
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • Caregiver substance use
  • caregiver arrests
  • child trauma
  • child welfare

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Sociology and Political Science


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