Poverty of Hard Work: Multiple Jobs and Low Wages in Family Economies
of Rural Utah Households
The combination of paid work and poverty, or near poverty, is a growing
problem in the United States, one of which is often accentuated by residence
in rural, low-wage communities where underemployment is more prevalent
than in metropolitan areas. This paper examines the experiences of sixty
rural families with inadequate employment using data from ethnographic
interviews with a particular focus on the strategies they use to meet
their family's needs in spite of low-wage work.
and Community Integrity
Family and community are two of the most significant social institutions
in the development and daily lives of individuals. This article offers
a model to conceptualize the relationship between family and community
derived from research conducted in Holyoke, Massachusetts between 1995
and 1997, and inspired by Erik Erikson's concept of individual integrity.
A brief profile of the City of Holyoke is presented followed by a discussion
about the relationship between family and community, including consideration
of the relevance of group membership and social identity, and the importance
of social cohesion and community efficacy. The research results are
presented within a model framework of what constitutes family and community
Work's Place in Social Work: A Historical Analysis
This paper uses a political/economic lens to explore the relationship
of social group work to the larger social work profession. The author
studied the group work collection at the Social Welfare History Archives,
the journal THE GROUP from the 1940s and 1950s, the proceedings of the
re-born group work organization, Association for the Advancement of
Social Work with Groups, and interviewed several prominent group workers
who were active in social group work from the 1940s. The author concludes
that group work's decision to merge with NASW in 1955 provided the hoped-for
professional identity. However, there were consequences for group workers
that were not anticipated and, ultimately, resulted in the disappearance
of group work as an integral part of social work education and practice.
Impact of Privatized Management in Urban Public Housing Communities:
A Comparative Analysis of Perceived Crime, Neighborhood Problems, and
Stan L. Bowie
A quasi-experimental design with non-equivalent groups assessed the
impact of privatized management on crime and personal safety in large
public housing communities in Miami, Florida. A randomly-selected sample
(N= 503) of low-income African Americans living in 42 different housing
"projects" were surveyed. Privatized sites had greater mean values for
break-ins and thefts (m=2.03, S.D.=1.47, p<.01) and vacant apartment
usage. Publicly-managed sites had higher mean values for shootings and
violence (m = 2.52, S.D. = 1.67, p<.01). While there were no statistically
significant differences in perceived personal safety, publicly-managed
respondents expressed greater satisfaction with police services. Privatized
management did not result in significantly more positive outcomes and
social services utilization was associated with less violent crime.
Implications are discussed for public housing crime, federal housing
policy, and future research.
the Homeless: Evaluating the Effectiveness of Homeless Shelter Services
M. Glisson, Bruce A. Thyer, and Robert L. Fischer
The effects of homeless assistance services at the local level are tremendously
difficult to ascertain. In this study, a four-month sample of homeless
persons served by a local homeless shelter and case management program
were contacted nine to eleven months after receiving services. The findings
suggest that the program had some initial success in assisting the homeless
clients to locate housing within the first year after leaving the shelter.
However, the housing costs paid by these formerly homeless were quite
high, with nearly three-quarters of them spending forty percent or more
of their income on housing.
Role of Social Capital in Reclaiming Human Capital: A Longitudinal Study
of Occupational Mobility among Displaced Steelworkers
Allison Zippay, Ph.D.
This paper examines the employment and income effects of job training,
education, and social network contacts over a 10-year period among a
random sample of steelworkers who lost jobs to plant closings in the
early 1980s in a manufacturing community in Western Pennsylvania. First
interviewed in 1987, a majority of the 102 respondents were unemployed
or underemployed. A second round of interviews was conducted in 1997
with 87 of the original respondents to examine changes in income and
employment status, the types of training and education that had been
pursued over the course of 10 years, and their use of social network
contacts in the job search process. The study found that short-term
training was not effective in providing training-related employment
or in advancing hourly wages above the sample mean. Social network contacts
were the primary means by which the respondents secured manufacturing
work and other skilled positions.
and Old Age in Twelve Communities
Pranab Chatterjee, Darlyne Bailey, and Nina Aronoff
This paper disputes the theory of universal stages of development (often
called the epigenetic principle) asserted by Erikson (1963; 1982; 1997)
and later developed in detail by Newman & Newman (1987, p. 33). It particularly
disputes that there are clear stages of adolescence (12-18), late adolescence
(18-22), old age (60-75), and very old age (75+). Data from twelve communities
around the world suggest that the concept of adolescence is socially
constructed in each local setting, and that the concept of late adolescence
is totally absent in some communities. Further, the stage of old age
(60-75) is much shorter in some communities, and that the stage of very
old age (75+) is not found at all in some communities.
Time Series Analysis of the Effect of Welfare Benefits on Earnings
Michael Anthony Lewis
Policy analysts Frances Fox Piven and Richard A. Cloward have put forth
a bargaining power model of earnings. More specifically, they have argued
that the higher workers' bargaining power, the higher their earnings
and the higher the level of welfare bene.ts, the higher workers' bargaining
power. Thus, based on Piven and Cloward's model, one would predict a
positive relationship between welfare benefit levels and earnings. Using
time series data I test Piven and Cloward's model and find support for
it. The policy implications of my findings are discussed.
Personal Biography and Social History: Women Casino Workers and the
Jill B. Jones and Susan Chandler
Economic globalization has been described as the "most fundamental redesign
of the planet's political and economic arrangements since as least the
industrial revolution" (Mander, 1996). This article explores its implications
in the lives of a group of women casino workers. Based on a qualitative
study in which data were collected from key informants, focus groups
of community leaders and professionals, and in-depth interviews with
women casino workers themselves, the study attempts, in the spirit of
C.Wright Mills (1959) and social work's tradition of person-in-environment,
to connect "the patterns of [individual] lives and the course of world
National Domestic Workers Union and the War on Poverty
This article explores values, strategies, and tensions found within
the War on Poverty and examines a War on Poverty-supported initiative,
the National Domestic Workers Union (NDWU). The article makes the argument
that the NDWU is illustrative of the War on Poverty in that each held
structurally based descriptions of poverty and individually based prescriptions.
The article explores the relationship of domestic service to the institutions
of racism, classism, and sexism and how the NDWU strategies of training,
service, and, advocacy-like those of the War on Poverty-sought to address
the needs of individual domestic workers while circumventing larger
and more complicated issues.
Family Experience with Mental Illness. Richard Tessler and Gail Gamache.
Reviewed by James W. Callicutt.
Course of Gay and Lesbian Lives: Social and Psychoanalytical Perspectives.
Betram J. Cohler and Robert M. Galatzer-Levy.
Reviewed by Ronald J. Mancoske.
Gender Division of Welfare: The Impact of British and Welfare States.
Rebecca A. Van Voorhis.
Arenas for Community Social Work Practice with Urban Youth: Use of the
Arts, Humanities, and Sports. Melvin Douglas.
and Welfare. Peter Taylor Gooby (Ed.). Paths to Success: Beating the
Odds in American Society.
Charles C. Harrington and Susan K. Boardman.
Drug Dealers: Violence Beyond the Law.
Bruce A. Jacobs.
of Charity: Volunteer Workers and Moral Community.
Rebecca Anne Allahyari.
of Dependency: The Civic Republican Tradition in U.S. Poverty Policy.
Alan. F. Zundel.