Children, Families, and the Law, Center on


Date of this Version



Published in Child Maltreatment, Vol. 12, No. 1, February 2007 68-85

DOI: 10.1177/1077559506296667

PMID: 17218649


Copyright © 2007 Sage Publications. Used by permission.


This article describes the development of the Community Norms of Child Neglect Scale (CNCNS), a new measure of perceptions of child neglect, for use in community samples. The CNCNS differentiates among four subtypes of neglect (failure to provide for basic needs, lack of supervision, emotional neglect, and educational neglect). Scenarios ranging in seriousness for each subtype were presented to a large community sample (N = 3,809). Confirmatory factor analyses indicated that a four-factor model provided a better fit to the data than did a model specifying only one overall neglect factor, suggesting this sample distinguished among the four subtypes of neglect. The authors tested measurement equivalence across individuals who work with children and lay community respondents and across rural and urban respondents, with results indicating a very similar structure across these groups. These initial reliability and validity data suggest that the CNCNS may be of use in comparing perceptions of child neglect among individuals and across communities.