CRITIQUE OF THE CHILD PROTECTIVE SYSTEM
Services (CPS) has been defined as an ineffective system. Common criticisms
are that the system is overburdened and that family preservation policy
pressures CPS to reunite families that can't be repaired. However, empirical
analyses that identify the deficiencies of this organization are limited.
This study utilizes case files in-depth interviews with interventionists
within and outside of CPS to explore the issue. Results reveal that the
most common criticisms of the system do have merit. However, it reveals
additional system limitations. Results suggest that the child protective
system is characterized by an individualistic approach and that this focus
hinders its ability to protect children. Specific problems associated
with this individualistic
focus are identified and a communitarian framework is proposed as a way
of reconceptualizing CPS deficiencies and needed solutions.
POVERTY RATES IN A METROPOLIS: THE EXAMPLE OF LOS ANGELES/LONG BEACH
develops a technique to estimate and project annual rates of poverty for
a large metropolitan area for various segments of its population. The
annual estimates and projections are based upon the official rates complied
by the Bureau of the Census. Using Los Angeles/ Long Beach as the site
of the experimental example, the evidence reveals a substantially increasing
trend in the incidence of poverty for the overall metropolitan population.
This increase is caused by the dramatic rise in poverty within the Hispanic
and Children population groups. Trends in poverty are negative, however,
for the the Elderly, Blacks, Female Family Heads and Whites. Explanations
are offered for the disparate trends in poverty among the various groups.
These explanations may serve as an agenda for future research. The Appendix
to the study provides the annual estimates and projections for each population
segment for the years 1959 through 2000.
AND WAGE PROGRESSION PATTERNS AMONG EARLY TANF LEAVERS
G. Anderson, Anthony P. Halter, George Julnes, and Richard Schuldt
reports on first-year employment experiences of a randomly selected sample
of 213 Illinois TANF leavers. Aggregate employment levels were 70 percent
at exit, and leavers typically generated earnings from a single full-time
job. However, employment often was unstable, so that only about one-fourth
of leavers had the same job both at exit and when interviewed 10-11 months
later. Employment instability resulted from the marginal or temporary
nature of many jobs, as well as employment barriers such as health problems
and lack of day care. Average wage levels easily exceeded the minimum
wage and grew during the first year after exit, but nonetheless often
were insufficient to provide incomes above the poverty level. The findings
underscore the need to develop post-employment service strategies that
assist persons in accessing work-related benefits such as child care and
Medicaid, as well as improved income support strategies such as expansion
of the Earned Income
A SOCIAL WORK PERSPECTIVE FOR ASSESSING SUCCESS
Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 has instituted
major changes in providing for the poor in the United States. This article
examines the importance of evaluating the impact of this legislation from
a social work perspective.
Using Mannheim as a theoretical orientation, welfare reform is examined
in relation to dominant ideologies of the 90s. The salience of social
work research, particularly qualitative research, in evaluating welfare
reform outcomes is explored. Social
workers are encouraged to challenge current ideology and utilize social
work expertise to conduct research and disseminate information documenting
the achievements and misfortunes of clients as a result of welfare reform.
OF ECONOMIC STRUCTURAL ADJUSTMENT PROGRAMS [ESAPS] ON WOMEN AND CHILDREN:
IMPLICATIONS FOR SOCIAL WELFARE IN ZIMBABWE
M. Kawewe and Robert Dibie
examines the impact of structural adjustment policy (SAP) on the welfare
of Zimbabweans, particularly women and children and draws some parallels
with economic policy in the US and its effect on social welfare programs
and the poor. The paper
argues that economic structural adjustment programs (ESAPs), introduced
by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund as major international
financial institutions in economic globalization, have been an inappropriate
public policy for
Zimbabwe. These economic reforms inflate poverty, decrease the country's
capability to develop a strong diversified domestic economy, increase
the exploitation of workers through deregulation accompanied by environmental
devastation of the poor translates into recurrences of socioeconomic crises
that threaten peace and social justice and compounded by natural calamities
and the relentlessness of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Human helping professionals
like social workers
are left to scramble for diminishing resources to meet the basic needs
of more clients with less.
EDUCATION OPTION FOR POOR WOMEN WITH CHILDREN
Min Zhan, Susan Neely-Barnes and Natasha Menon
education is the key to exiting from poverty permanently. Yet, the PRWORA
allows women only up to 12 months of vocational training while on welfare.
This paper focuses on bringing back the importance of investing in the
poor women, particularly the postsecondary education of poor women with
children, to the forefront of the welfare debate. In this paper we review
federal and state level welfare policies toward postsecondary education
of poor women with children. Some states are interpreting federal welfare
policy strictly and allowing only up to 12 months of vocational training
while on welfare. Other states allow poor women attending postsecondary
education to count class hours and homework hours toward the work participation
requirement. Support services--childcare and transportation--to women
attending college vary from state to state. Services for welfare mothers
who wish to go on to college are severely inadequate. We argue that federal
and state policies should be designed to encourage poor women to complete
two-and four-year college degrees because education of women is associated
with better economic and social returns for women, children, families
and society at large. We propose that welfare policies should encourage
women's college education by providing support services and stopping the
five-years clock for those attending college. In addition, programs such
as Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) and AmeriCorps should be expanded
to increase postsecondary education opportunities for poor women.
A DESCRIPTIVE ANALYSIS
OF SKIN COLOR BIAS IN PUERTO RICO: ECOLOGICAL APPLICATIONS TO PRACTICE
Travel brochures to
the island of Puerto Rico aptly profess the rich variation in skin color
and other phenotypes among its people.
Following acts of domination vis-a-vis the island's cultural mores, invading
colonizers evolved a social hierarchy to discourage
any notions of merit attributable to racial diversity. According to the
data herewith, the presumption of a relationship
between skin color and selected values for skin color ideals is plausible.
Social work practitioners are then challenged
to decipher the maze of racial traditions as pertains to discrimination.
Doing so will enable an environment for knowledge
based purely upon merit in order to resurrect indigenous knowledge about
the biases of otherwise victim populations.
REFORM WORKING? A STUDY OF THE EFFECTS OF SANCTIONS ON FAMILIES RECEIVING
TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE TO NEEDY FAMILIES
Lindhorst, Ronald J. Mancoske and Alice Abel Kemp
provides a preliminary descriptive analysis of the impact of sanctioning
on welfare recipients living in a southern metropolitan region. The data
from this phone survey indicate that many families report considerable
hardship no matter why they
exited from welfare. Compared to those who left voluntarily, those who
were sanctioned off welfare were significantly different in terms of having
unmet medical needs, going without food, and having their utilities turned
off. Given the high number of
problems reported and the low income reported by these respondents, it
is not surprising to find that only 10 percent of former recipients who
were sanctioned off of welfare feel that they are better off now than
when they received cash assistance. These
problems can represent a significant disruption in the lives of children
and their parents.
Work with Children and Adolescents: Prevention and Intervention in School
and Community Systems. Steven R. Rose.
The Social Edges of
Psychoanalysis. Neil J. Smelser.
Reading Foucalt for
Social Work: Adrienne Chambon, Allan Irving and Laura Epstein (Eds).
Emilia E. Martinez-Brawely.
Social Work with Lesbians,
Gays and Bisexuals: A Strengths Perspective. Katherine van Wormer, Joel
Wells and Mary Boes.
Ronald J. Mancoske.
Counseling and the
Therapeutic State. James J. Chriss (Ed.).
Child Abduction in America. Paula S. Fass.
Adoption and Financial
Assistance: Tools for Navigating the Bureaucracy. Rita Laws and Tim O'
Taking Stock: American
Government in the Twentieth Century. Morton Keller and R. Shep Melnick
Policing Urban Poverty.
True Security: Rethinking
American Social Insurance. Michael J. Graetz and Jerry L. Mashaw.