Racism and oppression is still very prevalent in today’s society and something that is experienced on a daily basis, whether white, black, Latino, Asian, etc. At the beginning of the course, the students were asked to describe the racial identity of the workers at their agency. It was a common theme for students’ work places to have mostly white workers and a low number of workers of color, with the workers of color generally in lower paying jobs. This can be seen at basically any agency in the country because we have valued the white race more than any other race throughout history. This social problem of people of color being in lower paying jobs in social service agencies will be examined further on a micro, meso, and macro level. There will be models applied to this social problem including the racial identity development model and the multicultural organization model. Also, a solution to this problem will be addressed, so this cycle of racism and oppression can be stopped.
Micro Level Social Work
Micro social work is the most common practice and happens directly with an individual client or family. This level “involves working directly with individuals, families, groups, communities, to facilitate social, emotional, and behavioral change” (Social Work @ Simmons, n.d.). These services can include finding housing, health care, local resources, and even family and individual therapy. Just like there is racism and oppression in other fields of work, social work is no different. Racism on the micro level can be seen as individual social workers showing racism and oppression against individuals of color. Some examples could be a therapist refusing to work with a client because of their race or the therap...
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...h and should include the employees and also the supervisors.
Another step should be that the agency hires culturally competent individuals and also individuals of color to make the agency more diverse. The agency could employ people of color and culturally competent individuals in supervisory and directory positions and not just the hourly positions. According to Sue (2006), an organization must not just employ individuals with cultural competence, but the agency itself must have a multicultural culture, meaning the agency must have a culture made up of multiple cultures. It is not enough for the agency to be diverse in terms of race and culture, but for the agency to adopt other cultures and not focus only on the dominant culture. If both of these things occur, then maybe the agency could move towards the cultural competence and cultural proficiency stages.
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