How do economic stresses on the family, such as dual-earner parents, unemployment, and poverty, affect the human service professional's assessment of the families he or she serves? The field of family sociology is now providing a wealth of empirical, relevant knowledge on the impact of macroeconomic issues on the families most frequently helped by social workers. New Approaches to Family Practice takes current research driven by the family systems theoretical framework and applies it to human services direct practice with families in three specific areas: employed-work and family-work, unemployment, and poverty. To illustrate the linkages from research to practice, the book presents chapters on the theory and research in each of the three target areas, each followed by a chapter on application and tools for direct practice in that area. Individual chapters include case studies, assessment tools, multilevel interventions and evaluations, and strategies for social change. In addition to being a rich resource for the human services professional who works with families, this book is ideal for courses in social work with the family, social work and human services, family studies, and clinical/counseling psychology.

Families and Work: Theory and Research

Families and work: Theory and research

In this chapter, I review current social science knowledge regarding family coping with changes in “employed work” and “family work.” Stress from multiple roles and potential role overload has recently become “normative” in the United States, particularly among families with children and other dependents. First, a brief overview sets theory and research in this area in historical perspective. Next, I delineate theoretical models, concepts, and definitions. A review of current research findings follows, including special attention to diversity in family structural forms and unique stressors. Finally, I offer a critique of current research, pointing out limitations and knowledge gaps, and briefly discuss implications for social work practice, indicating directions for professional involvement in knowledge ...

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