Understanding culture is an important aspect of being a social worker; this does not mean learning common cultural traits is of great significance to the social work profession. “Consider the second-generation Japanese-American social worker whose practice consists of Mexican-American and African-American families. Memorizing national traits or cultural rituals would be interesting and informative, but ultimately these would be an inaccurate basis on which to “know” these particular families” (Dorfman, 1996, p. 33). When understanding cultural competence it is important to learn from the client about their culture in order to serve them in the most helpful and efficient way possible. There is a major drawback to memorizing information, and that is this information will not give you a real understanding of whom your client is and what life...
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...culture you need to understand who they are. Memorizing different facts about a culture will not necessarily help you in becoming culturally competent with your clients. The code of ethics is a valuable resource that should be used in order to keep the standards high in the profession of social work.
Delgado, M. (1999). Social work practice in nontraditional urban settings. New York: Oxford University Press.
Dorfman, R. (1996). Clinical social work: Definiton [sic], practice, and vision. New York: Brunner/Mazel Publishers.
National Association of Social Workers [NASW]. (2008). Code of ethics of the National
Association of Social Workers. Washington, DC: NASW Press.
National Association of Social Workers [NASW]. (1998). The New NASW Code of Ethics Can Be Your Ally: Part I. Retrieved from: http://www.naswma.org/displaycommon.cfm?an=1&subarticlenbr=96
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