Source: (2004) Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare. 31(1): 93-116.The purpose of this article is to examine the challenges inherent in transforming child welfare services. We apply Braithwaite’s model of responsive regulation to the restorative practice of family group conferencing in child welfare. Shifting the role of the state away from controller of families in the child protective services system to one of regulatory partner with them is extraordinarily difficult. The paper looks at the complexities of reorienting child welfare services through the use of family group conferences on a large scale. Author’s abstract.