Monday, November 23, 2009

A social experiment......

A rather larger percentage of my caseload is focused around issues related to adult abuse and neglect. If i'm not directly investigating reports of adult abuse and neglect, I am responding to and collectively grappling with questions and concerns presented by clients, families, and colleagues alike around vulnerability, capability and the intersection of these two concepts.

Over the next several months, the blog will be exploring the complex and challenging issues that arise from working in the area of adult abuse and neglect. For me, some of these challenges include understanding vulnerability in a broader, socially determined context; grappling with what it means to be "least intrusive" in an area of practice that has 'outsiders'(like myself) justified or not, making determinations about someone's capability - necessarily threatening their autonomy, self-determination. Could it be anymore 'intrusive'? In the rush to fix, save and cure - one of the most challenging aspects of this work, is finding ways to enter into these spaces - creating opportunities for full, even conflicting narratives to emerge, taking time to listen and understand multiple perspectives, holding sacred these voices and co-creating meaningful and effective responses that mitigate risk and vulnerability and preserve dignity.

So here's the experiment part: these are some of the challenges that I am faced with on a daily basis. My hope is that as I grapple with these questions in this forum, that readers and followers of the blog post their own challenges and responses - furthering the dialogue, sharing knowledge, expertise and experience and deepening the opportunities for learning and connection.


  1. Hi
    Is there a link to Orienttion to PRactice and this blog?? A curious user

  2. Thinking about the KDC Healtht Forum and how easily there can be suspicions and mis-understandings between community and outsiders if we don't know each other at least well enough to challenge or question in a neutral way (i.e. social work students and misinterpreted role by aboriginal healht authority)