SOC DIS 1&2

Discussion 1: Cultural Influences of Social Policy

Cultures, regardless of where they are or how long ago they existed, share a few common characteristics. Among these characteristics is a structure to care for their children and to socialize them in the culture. Children are taught, both directly and indirectly, the values of the culture, their role in the culture, and the expectations the culture has for them. Children absorb the rules, dynamics, and values, which they will later pass these on to subsequent generations.

As a social worker, you will deal with families from different cultural backgrounds. Understanding the cultural background of the families you work with will help you to effectively intervene and advocate for policies that support their needs. How prepared are you to identify and advocate for social policies that are just and support families from all cultures?

For this Discussion, review this week’s resources, including the Hernandez Family video case. Consider how cultural considerations might affect child welfare policy. Then, think about what your responsibilities, as a social worker, might be in supporting the Hernandez family in addressing their child welfare needs through the accessibility of services.

By Day 3
Post an explanation of how cultural considerations might affect child welfare policy. Then, explain what your responsibilities, as a social worker, might be in supporting the Hernandez family in addressing their child welfare needs through the accessibility of services.

Support your post with specific references to the resources. Be sure to provide full APA citations for your references.
Hernandez Family Episode 3
Program Transcript
JUAN HERNANDEZ: Do you have any idea how hard it is for us to get to these
classes?
ELENA HERNANDEZ: And there’s only one class a week. We don’t have a
choice when to come.
FEMALE SPEAKER: That is why we offer the parenting class at night, to make it
easier for working families to attend.
ELENA HERNANDEZ: That’s fine for some people, but that’s when Juan gets his
overtime. He can’t do both. Every time we come here it costs us. We lose money.
And the way things are, we can’t afford to lose a dime.
FEMALE SPEAKER: I understand that missing overtime is having a big impact
on you financially. And I understand what you’re saying about the class only
being offered one night a week. If we could offer it several times a week, that
would probably be more helpful. But in the meantime–
JUAN HERNANDEZ: Look, let’s stop dancing around what’s really wrong here.
We appreciate what you’re doing. You want to help parents do a better job with
their kids. But we’re good parents. We love our kids. Yes, they get punished
when they need to be punished, just Elena and I when we were growing up. But
we don’t hit our boys. We don’t hurt them.
If anything, you hurt them by making us come here when I could be out there
making extra money, money that the family needs. Do you hear me? This class
this, whole policy is the real problem. That’s what needs to change, not us.
Hernandez Family Episode 3

Discussion 2: Child Welfare and Family Preservation

An essential aspect of social work practice is the support and preservation of the family unit. Building and empowering strong, resilient families is a focus of social work practice within organizations and communities.

Social work research is an integral aspect of working with families. The research component of social work is essential to providing effective policies, programs, and services to support and empower families.

As a social worker, you need to be equipped with the knowledge and skills required for effectively working with families for child welfare. You also need to interpret and evaluate research findings involving family and child welfare.

For this Discussion, review this week’s resources. Consider the role of family preservation in child welfare, the research regarding family preservation, and the assumptions about foster care. Think about whether you agree with the research, and whether there are any gaps in your state foster care system that might contribute to the assumptions. Reflect on the benefits and shortfalls of permanency planning and family preservation and which approach you prefer.

By Day 4
Post an explanation of the role of family preservation in child welfare. Then, explain whether research supports the assumption that foster care is harmful for children, as presented by the cornerstone argument for family preservation. Be sure to include whether you agree with this assumption and why you agree or disagree. Subsequently, identify the gaps in your state foster care system that contribute to the idea that foster care is harmful to children. Then, compare the benefits and shortfalls of permanency planning and family preservation. Finally, provide a description of whether you prefer the permanency or the family preservation approach as a child welfare social worker and why you prefer it.

Support your post with specific references to the resources. Be sure to provide full APA citations for your references.

Required Readings
Popple, P. R., & Leighninger, L. (2019). The policy-based profession: An introduction to social welfare policy analysis for social workers (7th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.

Chapter 10, “Child Welfare: Family Preservation Policy” (pp. 214-244)
Edwards, H. R., Bryant, D. U., & Bent-Goodley, T. B. (2011). Participation and influence in federal child welfare policymaking. Journal of Public Child Welfare, 5(2/3), 145–166.

Plummer, S. -B., Makris, S., & Brocksen, S. (Eds.). (2014). Sessions: Case histories. Baltimore: MD: Laureate International Universities Publishing. [Vital Source e-reader].

Part 1, “The Hernandez Family” (pp.3–5)

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