Social Welfare Positional Paper


Societies all around the world have various social problems, and they are a challenge in most of these communities. In almost every culture, there are minority groups, either tribal, racial, religious, or even cultural. These are where marginalization commonly arises from, and this is due to misrepresentation or lack of acknowledgment by the other more extensive and more influential factions. In other societies, the reasons appear to be much more complicated than one would think and this is usually a systemic problem meaning that there are policies that were formulated before that may have resulted in the segregation of these persons (Burke, 1995). A good example is the African American people in the USA, despite equality being much higher than it was during the Jim Crow era this community seems to bear the brunt of most of the social problems in America. These social problems include crime, unemployment, lack of education, discrimination, drug abuse, and other social issues (Healy, 2007). The phobia among some white Americans is still present, and some of the hate that marginalized groups often receive is passed down along generations, and this is a huge problem. As years have gone by these social challenges, have become much harder to mitigate mostly among these marginalized groups. The policies are not particularly outright, but the oppressive nature of these policies are in just the routine procedures that have been laid out. At times it is necessary to provide laws that can favor these minority groups so that the social set up can be more inclusive and equal

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Keywords: oppression, marginalization, inclusivity, policies, social problems, society

Social Problems and African-American society

The social problem that could be well discussed is that of education in the African-American community. Education is a basic need for most children, but in the African-American community, it has become much harder to ensure that these children go to school. This is due to the very many distractions that surround them, and they feel that the system is usually against them because that is what they are told by those who are older than them and most of whom are criminals (Healy, 2007). The best policy approach is to give these children a conducive environment to live in which means reducing the number of drugs that come into their neighborhoods and at the same time also making sure that they are given priority in school and this should also include Hispanics and Native Americans.

No policy can address this issue at one go because of the item being complex. By being complicated, it means that there are several stakeholders involved and to try and mitigate and bring cohesion amongst all these groups is extremely difficult (Moroney, 1991). The policy goals should aim to empower marginalized racial groups as mentioned, provide a safe environment for these children and also the community to live in, reduction of drugs and substance abuse around these areas (King, 2010). This will ensure that future generations can become better, which will lead to the whole society improving massively. Currently, there are no such policies, and if there are the government is not doing enough to enforce it as law.

The population the current policy approach covers

This policy ought to over the most marginalized groups in the country because most African-American persons have experienced oppression or abuse at some point in their lives (Appleby, 2001). This is inclusive of even those who are famous, and they have given accounts of a run-in with the police and authorities. Despite all this, the marginalized groups such as the African-Americans, Hispanics, and Native Americans should also strive for better lives because they deserve better lives (Moroney, 1991). They should desire to achieve these lives in the right way not by using underhand methods such as criminal activity.

The current funding to deal with such issues is not considered because there is more that can be done to give schools better facilities and resources just like children in upmarket schools. Funding is an integral part of ensuring that social problems are eradicated and coupled with giving people these opportunities, it becomes much easier to get rid of the social issues in question (Penketh, 2000). Therefore, funding should be sought out to give these people more to look forward to, and this will ensure that they can achieve much more in their lives.

The Funding Levels for the Policy Approach and Sufficient Address to the Issues

Despite funding, the policy may affect the overlooked people significantly, and this is because they will be able to have more to live for in their lives. The plan will reduce the rate of crime, drug abuse, and it will encourage more of the marginalized persons to believe in the system (Appleby, 2001). Once they believe in the order, it will make them look forward to learning and even getting jobs at some point in their lives. Most of these communities have not been empowered, and most feel they cannot because of their attitude, which stems from decades of hate by the persons in power and influence (King, 2010).

The policy formulated could either meet or not meet the expectations of these marginalized groups. The reason is that these efforts have to be both ways, and if the community leaders are not willing to take up these policies, it will be in vain. Therefore, the right approach is to create inclusivity and try to acknowledge that one cannot formulate strategies for a people they do not know and for a community that they do not know the types of challenges they go through (Muncie, 2006). By consulting the community leaders or persons who represent the interests of the community, it will ensure that they can give their plight, and they will be addressed.

It is a challenge to police a community that one does not engage with or relate to, and this is why there are many incidents of police brutality. Most of the police are not able to understand these people, and most of them are white Americans who have an individual perception of these communities (Deakin, 1993). This does not mean that all the police are this way, but it would be a good idea to try and balance the equation by having police from the minority groups policing these communities. This will make the people in this neighbourhood much more confident with the system, and it will encourage the people to look at the police as a service unit and not a force (Deakin, 1993).

The Recommendations for the Policy Change

Specific recommendations would also be to make, and they are vital because it is essential to ensure that the policy is in black and white and also that people can understand the procedure (Mclaughlin, 2005). The first recommendation is to make policies that involve the community meaning that there should be public participation that the people can agree with and that represent their interests. The other recommendation is to ensure that all the people in the community attend these policymaking meeting to be able to have a more cohesive society. This will ensure that everyone can react correctly to the policy to avoid chaos and confusion.

Another recommendation that properly fits into the policymaking is to have leaders who can back these policies (Mclaughlin, 2005). This means that the leaders in congress and also the executive should also be involved by visiting these areas and speaking to these people. This will encourage minority groups to be willing to change positively. Most of these groups live in the regions that are not so well taken care of like the suburbs. They live in areas that have inadequate housing, and there is overcrowding, these leaders should be able to go to those areas and speak to these people.


Social problems will always be there, and they affect everyone indirectly because if the crime rate is high, then it makes one live in fear. It is typically down to the system to try and correct itself, and this means that the people in the order should try and be more understanding to enable these smaller groups to come up and have better lives. Most of the African-Americans are Americans and not Africans. This is something that has been highlighted severally because it is the truth, and most of these people were born in America just like Native Americans who have lived there for centuries on end.


Appleby, G.A., Colon, E. and Hamilton, J. (2001) Diversity, oppression, and social functioning: Person-in-environment assessment and intervention. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

Dalrymple, J. & Burke, B. (2003 / 1995), Anti-Oppressive Practice: Social Care and the Law, Berkshire, Open University Press

Deakin, N. (1993), ‘Privatism and Partnership in Urban Policy’ in New Perspectives on the Welfare State in Europe, by Jones C. (ed), London: Routledge.

Healy, L. M. (2007), Universalism and cultural relativism in social work. International Journal of Social Work, 50 (1): 11–26.

King, D.  & Ross, F. (2010), Critics and Beyond. In F.G. Castles, S. Leibfried, J. Lewis, H. Obinger, & C. Pierson (Eds).  The Oxford Handbook of the Welfare State. Oxford:  Oxford University Press.

Mclaughlin, K. (2005), ‘From Ridicule to institutionalisation: anti-oppression, the state and social work’ in Critical Social Policy, 25 (3) 283-305.

Moroney, R. (1991), Social Work and Social Policy: Critical Essays on the Welfare State, Boston: Aldine de Gruyter.

Muncie, J. (2006), Governing young people: Coherence and contradiction in contemporary youth justice. Critical Social Policy, 26 (4) 770-793.Penketh, L. (2000), Tackling Institutional Racism: Anti-racist policies and Social Work, Education and Training, Bristol: Policy Press.

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