Migrant Families in Child Protection Hearings in Switzerland
Between Universalism and Psychologization
The encounter between law and socio-cultural diversity, which is increasingly present in our globalised societies, regularly leads to public debates and questioning of judicial practices. However, despite the significant amount of research on the rights of migrant people, the management of this socio-cultural diversity in child protection proceedings in Switzerland remains an issue that is hardly conceptualised. Thus, based on an analysis of eight hearing observations carried out in two Child and Adult Protection Authorities (CAPA) in French-speaking Switzerland, we highlight that there is a certain difficulty in integrating socio-cultural differences in the exchanges between professionals and migrant families. This is in particular due to a strong psychologisation of families’ behaviour and the adoption of a universalist approach to culture by the CAPA’s members.