Discussion 1: Policies and the Influence of Values
Ideology, politics, and the influence of values often override evidence-based policy. When there is evaluation conflict, a policy advocate must be prepared to defend his/her reasons for wanting to implement a policy. Because almost all proposed policies are circumscribed by politics (for reasons brought up by Jansson throughout the course when discussing the subtleties of policy implementation), you should be prepared for some conflict, ranging from having your research ignored, to having the accuracy of your data questioned, to having your personal values brought into question.
In this Discussion, you consider the assertion that the evaluation of specific policies is often strongly influenced by values. You also examine and evaluate ways to mitigate evaluation conflict to defend the feasibility of your policy.
Post by Day 3
a response to Jansson’s assertion that evaluating specific policies is strongly influenced by values with respect to the case of the evaluation of special services. How do the values of evaluation conflict adhere to social work values? What practices would you use to defend the feasibility of and effectiveness of your evidence-based policy?
Respond by Day 5
to a colleague with a discussion of why the evaluation of policies is often controversial and political and how the values of evaluation conflict adhere to social work values. What policy advocacy skills can social workers use to ensure that appropriate evaluations are being conducted on policies?
RE: Discussion 1 – Week 11
Jansson makes a valid point by referencing that values strongly influence policies with respect to the case of the evaluation of special services. According to the NASW (2017), “Social workers should consider ethical theory and principles generally, social work theory and research, laws, regulations, agency policies, and other relevant codes of ethics, recognizing that among codes of ethics social workers should consider the NASW Code of Ethics as their primary source.” The values of evaluation conflict adhere to social work values as they incorporate dignity and self-worth of a person and service. The dignity and self-worth of a person focus on enhancing the capacity for change of a population. As far as service, it helps to address social problems within society. As social workers, we advocate in the best interest of the people in which we are serving. Our code of ethics is the tool we utilize to ensure that we are doing what is in our clients’ best interest, especially when it comes down to advocating for their needs. Assessing policies is the starting point for creating a world where evidence and ethical values of social work function hand in hand to produce compelling social welfare policies for vulnerable populations(Jansson, 2018).
I would use the practices to defend my evidence-based policy’s feasibility, and effectiveness would be building coalitions. According to Cohen, Baer & Satterwhite (2003), Coalitions are useful for accomplishing a broad range of goals that reach beyond any individual member organization’s capacity. These goals range from information sharing to coordination of services, from community education to advocacy for major environmental or policy (regulatory) changes( Cohen et al., 2003).
Code of Ethics of the National Association of Social Workers (2017)
Cohen, L., Baer, N., & Satterwhite, P. (2003). Developing effective coalitions: An eight step guide. Oakland, CA: Prevention Institute.
Jansson, B. S. (2018). Becoming an effective policy advocate: From policy practice to social justice (8th ed.). Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole Cengage Learning Series. Chapter 14, “Assessing Policy: Toward Evidence-Based Policy During Task 8” (pp. 488-503)