Table of Contents
Domestic and family violence: A Social Issue Concerning the Lives of Victims.
Activities of Social Worker Concerning the Victims of Domestic and family violence.
Benefits and Limitations of Critical Social Work Approach towards Curbing this Social Evil
Approach of this Social Issue vis a vis Social Work Ethics and Values and the Purpose of Social Work
The domestic and family violence has been considered as one of the serious National Health and welfare issue which is likely to affect the victims and perpetrators with its impact till their life. As per the report of Australian Bureau of Statistics 2016 Personal Safety Survey, there are 2.2 million Australian citizens who have been experiencing sexual or physical violence from their partner and the number of Australian citizens experiencing any sort of emotional abuse from their partner is 3.6 million. It is noticeable that the report also suggested a figure of about 2.2 million Australian citizens who have been forced into sexual violence from a sensitive age of 15 only (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2016). The present paper will critically analyse the features of domestic and family violence providing oversight of the various activities with which social workers are engaged to resolve this social issue. In furtherance of this particular issue, the paper will provide an in-depth analysis of the limitations and the benefits which are associated with the Social Work approach focusing on addressing the issue of domestic and family violence. The work will also scrutinize the alignment of this particular social issue with the ethics of social work and the purpose of social work in this regard.
The concept of domestic and family violence has been a critical and complex issue around the globe as most of the nation are encountering a rise in number in this social issue mandating the role and assistance of social workers to prevent and rehabilitate the victims of this social evil. The domestic and family violence includes and considers various abusive activities which include not only physical, sexual, economic, emotional but also address the psychological abuses done towards the adult, children and elders (Huecker & Smock, 2020). Domestic and family violence is considered as a crime in the nation which includes abuse, violence and bullying behaviour or actions reflected towards a partner or former partner to control or threaten them (NSW Government, n.d). Domestic violence is also refereed as intimate partner violence. These evil acts are not limited to one particular gender but usually, it is the men who indulge in violence against the women in domestic and family violence (WHO, 2017). The domestic and family violence can be an issue occurring between relatives extended family separated divorced couples or even lesbian Gay Bisexual Trans Intersex and Queer (LGBTIQ) couples. The act also includes child abuse as a result of domestic violence over a child or young people. The role of social workers is an integral and significant part in delivering the support and intervention services to the victims and survivors of domestic and family violence. With the successful collaboration with different agencies and government departments working progressively towards the curbing of this social issue, the social workers are effectively tackling various complex social evils of domestic and family violence in the nation (Australian Government, 2016).
There are various activities which can be undertaken by a social worker to prevent and resolve this evil issue prevailing in the society. Even social workers play a significant role and have various responsibility concerning the matters of intimate partner violence as well as domestic and family violence. Social workers are indulged in various activities to assist the victims and provide support with the active participation in legislation, policies, advocacy and practice related to the issue of domestic and family violence. The broad range of social activities which can be administered by the social workers to prevent or treat to the domestic and family violence includes counselling and advocacy for the victims (Australian Association of Social Workers, 2017); various family and support programs; a protective guardianship for the abusive elders and educational programmes for the victims who are at the risk of getting abused providing alternative living arrangements intensive service programs which will help in the maintenance of the family is who is at the risk of losing their children and ultimately there can be individual service programs in the placement as well as family settings. One such critical methodology which can be adopted by the social workers to reduce and prevent the cases of victims facing the domestic and family violence is to collect the data concerning the children who have been exposed to such violence. These data collection process can help in developing strategies which have the potential to mitigate to and confront the matters of family abuse. Another most direct way in which social workers can help and look into this evil social issue and the victims like the family members and children who are suffering from domestic and family violence is through the dedication and contribution to the services which are related to child protection. Most of the time, the victims of domestic and family violence which is exposed and have suffering seriously as a result of this heinous social evil are children and thus the protection and prevention of their childhood is a critical issue for the smooth functioning of a society which can be taken care by the social workers (Watson, 2017).
The violence against women is considered as a state of behaviour which is learned (VicHealth, 2014). There are various benefits associated with the critical social work approach concerning the prevention of domestic and family violence. It is noticeable that the social workers are capable to support primary secondary and tertiary prevention and provide crisis response of violence against women and early intervention by the help of working methodology which is across many levels of society including community individual institutions and workplaces. The role of the social worker concerning the response to the various crimes of violence against the women in domestic and family violence is also magnified with the principles of social justice, human rights and professional integrity across the nation (Australian Association of Social Welfare, 2015). The social workers having the attributes such as the value to honesty, reliability, transparency, discernment, competence, reflective self-awareness and commitment, etc. two ways voice and play a critical role in addressing and responding to various violence-related issues against the women without the consideration of the context in which it has been practised. There are various limitations associated with the approach that has been implemented and utilised by the social workers to prevent this social evil of domestic and family violence. One such limitation which has been pointed out by the researchers is concerning the observation and analysis of the concept of domestic abuse and violence (Robbins & Cook 2018). The social workers usually struggle with the victims of domestic violence to gain trust and considered this domestic violence as a hurdle for the women to overcome but rather than considering this observe hurdle if the whole social even is considered as a trauma then the support can be provided in a better and effective manner. The major concern with the support and assistance provided by the social workers in this regard is about developing and building trust with the victims of domestic and family violence who are in the context of living with abuse and work. The victims struggle to fully accept and trust the social workers to gain access and consideration of social work systems, professional power and understand the wider inequality prevalent in society. Although it is also noticeable that respect and trust for the voluntary social services provided to the victims of such abuse are usually accepted and appreciated and can lead to the achievement of building alliance with the voluntary social and other service users you are serving the victims and helping in developing a trust relationship with them.
The role and responsibility associated with the social work profession are to increase and improve the well-being of the human and help the individuals who are to meet the basic requirements of the humans (Willson & Web, 2018). The particular attention which is provided by the social worker is for the needs and empowerment of individuals who are in oppression and forced living in poverty which is against the implementation of human rights. With the consideration of the role and responsibilities associated with the social workers to the social issue of domestic and family violence, these principles have been forecasted and targeted by the social workers in their action to the response over the violence against women in any form. Since, the social evil of domestic and family violence is not a simple issue and response to this issue demands a truly holistic approach of the social worker videos, the various ethical dilemma is encountered by the social workers in action which have to be taken to overcome and strengthen the victims of domestic abuse particularly those who have been with a violent partner (Safe Lives, 2015). The policy and ethics-related with the Social work profession also include to raise voice and provide help in the shaping of legislation which is required as per the need of the situation and the cases which are frequently observed concerning domestic and family violence. The social workers along with the psychologist and other mental health professionals, who act as a frontline worker, for the people who have been victimized in domestic violence have both the ethical mandate as well as statutory to mitigate the harms caused by this social issue regarding the physical and emotional health of the victims. Thus, a balance has been developed corresponding to the responsibilities and authorities provided to the social worker with their policy and ethics to help and improve the lives of those who are in vulnerable and miserable conditions because of this social issue. The profession of social work considers the violence against women in the form of domestic and family violence and refer the same as a complex social issue concerning gender inequality at its centre. The professional social workers apply the policy of “family structure ecological system analysis” as the basic theory and concept to understand and respond to the issue of domestic and family violence (Eriksson et al., 2018). The application of this theory allows one to observe and settle the victims with the changes required to improve the quality of their lives vis a vis human rights vested in the individual. The whole process of responding and understanding the social issue incorporates the better understanding in the social workers concerning the complex interplay of ethnicity, ability, gender, social-economic status, religion and sexuality on women's lived experience of violence. The social workers with their profession are dedicated and contributing Sto all the possible ethics and policies which can be incorporated and provided in alignment with this issue to eradicate and prevent this social evil in the society.
With the in-depth analysis of the role and responsibilities associated with the social workers to eradicate and prevent these social evils of domestic and family violence, it is conclusive that the social workers play of magnificent and crucial role in helping the vulnerable and miserable life who are forced to struggle with these domestic abuses from their partner or family. Social workers have been providing facilities and benefits to the victims to a great extent but there are limitations associated with the concept of social work for this particular issue of domestic violence. There is a need to reform the concept of approaching the victims of domestic abuse as the whole activity and assistance provided by the social work was requires the trust and confidence of the victims to help them get over this trauma and injustice. To achieve and build a trust relationship with such victims, the various researchers suggested considering this social issue as a trauma for the provision of assisting those victims. The researchers have advocated that this particular approach can enhance and improve the quality of social work deliver to those victims and their families in rehabilitation and assistance. The social workers are making a significant impact on these lives with the application of ethics and policies associated with the profession of social work and have the potential to prevent this social evil of domestic and family violence.
Australian Association of Social Welfare. (2015). Position Statement: Violence against Women. https://www.aasw.asn.au/document/item/7652
Australian Association of Social Workers. (2017). Submission to the Attorney-General's Department. https://www.ag.gov.au/sites/default/files/2020-05/australian-association-of-social-workers_1.pdf
Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2016). Personal Safety, Australia. https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/people/crime-and-justice/personal-safety-australia/latest-release
Australian Government. (2016, May 20). Social Worker making a difference for domestic violence victims. http://mediahub.servicesaustralia.gov.au/news/making-difference-domestic-violence/
Eriksson, M., Ghazinour, M. & Hammarström, A. (2018). Different uses of Bronfenbrenner’s ecological theory in public mental health research: what is their value for guiding public mental health policy and practice?. Soc Theory Health, 16, 414–433 https://doi.org/10.1057/s41285-018-0065-6
Huecker MR & Smock W. Domestic Violence. (2020, June 26). In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499891/
NSW Government. (n.d). What is domestic and family violence?. https://www.facs.nsw.gov.au/domestic-violence/about/what-is-dv
Robbins, R. & Cook, K. (2018). ‘Don’t Even Get Us Started on Social Workers’: Domestic Violence, Social Work and Trust—An Anecdote from Research. The British Journal of Social Work, 48(6), 1664–1681, https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcx125
Safe Lives. (2015, April 25). The role of social workers in responding effectively to domestic abuse. https://safelives.org.uk/practice_blog/role-social-workers-responding-effectively-domestic-abuse
VicHealth. (2014). Australian Attitudes to violence against women – Research Summary, Victorian Health Promotion Foundation: Melbourne
Watson, D. (2017, March 30). Domestic abuse and child protection: women’s experience of social work intervention. https://www.iriss.org.uk/resources/insights/domestic-abuse-and-child-protection-womens-experience-social-work-intervention
WHO. (2017, November 29). Violence Against Women. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/violence-against-women
Willson, M. & Webb, R. (2018). Social Work’s Role in Responding to Intimate Partner Violence. National Association of Social Workers. https://www.socialworkers.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=WTrDbQ6CHxI%3D&portalid=0
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