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Intersectionality and Policy - Social Work Essay Sample

3 pages
681 words
Boston College
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The global social policy has impacts on the poverty and people living in poverty. Through the support of such policy, the social work professionals can take on global issues of poverty. From a global perspective, the policy can make attempts in the formulation of new forms of collective actions to address the issue of poverty and the affected population (Colby, Dulmus & Sowers, 2013). In the United States there is Texas Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and usually offers medical and financial support to children and guardians or parents in need. Global social policy can impact this population which can be through the promotion of institutions and political processes that are not under the jurisdiction of a single government (Colby, Dulmus & Sowers, 2013). It can also enhance external government social processes as they are adopted bilaterally, pluri-laterally or multilaterally.

Intersectionality has been utilized in important theories in the description of the means in there is an interconnection of oppressive institutions and that their examination is not possible if they are separated (Nakhid, et al., 2015). The population that includes children, guardians or parents usually have diverse attributes which include being lesbian, gay, bisexual transgender, people of color and women, people with disability and victims of colonialism. These people living in poverty have interlocking identities. In the development of global social policy, there can be unintended consequences which can either be the unexpected benefit, unexpected drawback or perverse outcomes (Brady, et al., 2014). In the development of a policy that can help those in poverty, there can be unexpected consequences which can have adverse effects. If a program is developed to offer financial help, it can lead to discrimination of the population being aided which can result in health issues. This means there can be part of the people that will not work since they can get financial aid. Welfare programs can result in an increased cycle of poverty.

The population possesses various attributes such as race, gender, and sexuality among others. The children and parents or guardians living in poverty might have of the minority race. For instance, it has been evidenced that the black males are more likely to miss on help in the social work context. There have been reports of discrimination due to being of the minority sexual orientation. The gay and lesbians have been noted to be more likely to be discriminated. The blacks in the United States and especially black males are still burdened with poverty, low employment rate, and poor health. This is despite their substantial advances in professional and educational status among others. Discrimination as an unintended consequence has far-reaching effects on the black population such as lack of enough health care and other financial aid. This means they die sooner compared to the rest of society. Discrimination may result in more physical health issues, decreased self-esteem and mental anxiety among others. It is therefore right to say that social workers play a critical role in challenging discrimination and promoting social and economic justice. In the fulfillment of this responsibility, there is the need for an understanding of how discrimination comes into existence and the adverse effects it establishes between the persons who disenfranchised and those considered to be more privileged. Social workers need to adhere to NASW Code of Ethics adopting the set values principles and standards in their daily decision making. Also, the fight against issues such as discrimination needs to be supported by appropriate global social policy.



Colby, I., Dulmus, C., & Sowers, K. (2013). Social Work and Social Policy: Advancing the Principles of Economic and Social Justice (pp. 81-92). New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Brady, M. P., Duffy, M. L., Hazelkorn, M., & Bucholz, J. L. (2014). Policy and systems change: Planning for unintended consequences. Clearing House: A Journal of Educational Strategies, Issues and Ideas, 87(3), 102109.

Nakhid, C., Majavu, A., Bowleg, L., Mooney, S., Ryan, I., Mayeda, D., Fu, M., Hickey, H., Sumeo, K., Wilson, H., Crothers, C., Aguirre, A., & Halstead, D. (2015). Intersectionality revisited: Moving beyond the contours of race, class, genderNotes on an intersectionality symposium. New Zealand Sociology, 30(4), 190198.


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