“Do you really want this in front of a judge?”

Lindsay, C. (2019) “Do you really want this in front of a judge?”. In: Webb, S. (ed.) The Routledge Handbook of Critical Social Work. Routledge: London, pp. 372-389. ISBN 9781351264402 (doi: 10.4324/9781351264402-33)

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This chapter focuses on those who are age-disputed, claiming to be under 18 but whom the authorities believe are older and who are age assessed by social workers. It utilizes age assessments in Scotland to explore actor-network theory as a method for social work research. The politics of asylum in the UK centre around discourses of Othering based on “criminalisation”, economic insecurity and “xenoracism”. Actors are positioned relative to the problematisation process in different ways. Age assessment is inconsistent and variable. The JCHR has “grave concerns” about the Home Office’s ability to identify children during screening. Age assessment is often “inquisitorial” or “forensic”, focused on the child’s appearance, demeanour and credibility relative to a reified Western ideal of “universal childhood innocence, dependence and vulnerability”. Age assessment is “controversial” – it spills beyond established boundaries and is not “stabilised, closed or black boxed”.

Item Type:Book Sections
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Lindsay, Dr Calum
Authors: Lindsay, C.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > General Practice and Primary Care
Journal Name:The Routledge Handbook of Critical Social Work

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