Social Work with Black and Ethnic Minority Families: Messages from Research
Thursday 18th February, 5 pm, C001, Hanna Sheehy-Skeffington Building
This seminar summarises key messages from research on social work with black and ethnic minority families. Several lines of research suggest that social workers often take a racialised deficit-oriented focus and struggle to understand the factors that are barriers to black families’ engagement with social services. There is increasing recognition that black and ethnic minority families have diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds, and are thus confronted with complex lived realities because of the convergence of ethnicity, gender norms and cultural practices, alongside the overt and subtle processes of racism and discrimination that differentially situate their experiences from those of the majority population. The seminar will examine these factors and provide pointers to the knowledge, skills and values that are needed for enabling meaningful dialogues with families of different cultures and races in the safeguarding arena.
Claudia Bernard is Professor of Social Work and Head of Postgraduate Research at Goldsmiths, University of London. Her research interests lie in investigating the intersection of race, gender, social class, and child and family welfare. She has written widely on child abuse and gender-based violence, including a book entitled Constructing Lived Experiences: Representations of Black Mothers in Child Sexual Abuse Discourses. Her latest book, co-edited with Dr Perlita Harris and titled Safeguarding Black Children: Good Practice in Child Protection, will be published by Jessica Kingsley in May 2016.