1 SPECIAL SECTION: DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND SOCIAL WORK EDUCATION. GUEST EDITORIAL. DOMESTIC VIOLENCE and Social Work Education: What Do We Know, What Do We Need to Know? THE BATTERED WOMEN'S MOVEMENT went down- that happens behind closed doors is just as hill when the MSWs took over. Ouch. Why compelling as the oppression perpetrated by do you say that, I gingerly asked? The state societal institutions. Perhaps she thought that DOMESTIC VIOLENCE advocate stared at me as if teaching about DOMESTIC VIOLENCE would give to say, You don't know?, and then listed off social work educators an opportunity to ad- a number of complaints. Most of the social dress a major national and international hu- workers I've met only see DOMESTIC VIOLENCE man rights issue that has public health, as a mental health problem that individual economic, and criminal justice consequences?
2 Counseling can solve, and they come out of Perhaps her assumption about the fit between school not knowing anything about the issue. social work and DOMESTIC VIOLENCE was correct, We thought by now social workers would at but was there any basis for her assertions about least know why women stay and why men our collective lack of attention to this subject? hit. That's what we call DOMESTIC VIOLENCE Let us explore the evidence. What indica- 101. It's exasperating that professional social tors are available to assess our profession's workers still ask the same victim-blaming overall capacity to address DOMESTIC VIOLENCE questions as the general public. It's been al- both in and out of the classroom? There are most 30 years since we began this movement. published resources including journal ar- Where have y'all been?
3 Ticles, reports, standards, and textbooks. We Indeed, where have we all been? Why did could learn from how practitioners assess this generally knowledgeable person expect their academic preparation for addressing that social workers would receive informa- DOMESTIC VIOLENCE and from how clients view tion about DOMESTIC VIOLENCE in their aca- social work assistance. We can also review demic preparation for professional practice? the extent to which DOMESTIC VIOLENCE is in- Perhaps it seemed to her like a logical as- cluded in both undergraduate and graduate sumption. After all, she knew about our curricula and whether there are persons with profession's historic mission to address the expertise in this area on social work faculties. needs of vulnerable and oppressed persons. What is the current capacity of the profes- Perhaps she thought that we would recog- sion, and in particular social work education, nize that the oppression and vulnerability to address this issue?
4 What does the social Journal of Social Work Education Vol. 39, No. 2 (Spring/Summer 2003). Copyright 2003. Council on Social Work Education, Inc. All rights reserved. 215. 216 JOURNAL OF SOCIAL WORK EDUCATION. work literature say about social work's re- Rice, 1979; Davis & Carlson, 1981), failing to sponse to DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ? Are there pro- recognize abuse as a problem (Pagelow, 1981;. fessional standards and competencies for Hansen, Harway, & Cervantes, 1991), and addressing DOMESTIC VIOLENCE in a number of failing to make appropriate interventions and different field settings? Do social workers feel referrals (Bass & Rice, 1979; Davis, 1984; Ross academically prepared to address DOMESTIC & Glisson, 1991). Recent studies show mixed VIOLENCE ? What articles have been published results including overall client satisfaction in the Journal of Social Work Education?
5 What (Hamilton & Coates, 1993), lack of motivation discussions have we had regarding how to to help teenage dating VIOLENCE victims (Foshee infuse content on DOMESTIC VIOLENCE into the & Linder, 1997), and client disenchantment foundation curriculum or whether this topic with social workers for minimizing women's should be treated as an elective? Do we know needs and using impartiality as a way to how many social work programs integrate avoid taking a stand against VIOLENCE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE content into their curricula? (Eisikovits & Buchbinder, 1996). While social Or how many programs offer electives in this workers are not practicing universal screen- area? Are there published studies on the effec- ing, there appears to be improvement in their tiveness of various teaching methodologies ability to assess and intervene appropriately and approaches?
6 What about our textbooks? (Danis, 2003). Perhaps it is not surprising Is the information about DOMESTIC VIOLENCE in that, due to our overall history of bias and social work textbooks accurate? Do our text- blame, the relationship between professional books provide enough information for stu- social work and the grassroots battered dents to learn the complexities of this issue? women's movement has been antagonistic What about expertise within social work fac- and social workers are seen as barriers not ulties? Does every school have at least one allies (Kanuha, 1998). So the allegations of the faculty member with expertise in DOMESTIC state DOMESTIC VIOLENCE advocate were actu- VIOLENCE or VIOLENCE against women? If not, ally grounded in the empirical literature. do social work programs recruit faculty Standards Anyone?
7 With this expertise like they recruit for ex- pertise in child welfare, substance abuse, or With regard to the current capacity of the gerontology? profession to address DOMESTIC VIOLENCE , we know of no professional standards nor iden- What Does the Literature Say About tified social work competencies for address- Social Work's Response to ing DOMESTIC VIOLENCE . The National DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ? Association of Social Workers (NASW) ad- From the late 1970s through the early dresses DOMESTIC VIOLENCE as part of their 1990s, the social work profession earned a Family VIOLENCE Policy Statement (NASW, reputation as uncaring, uninformed, and 2003). However, there is no separate policy unhelpful to battered women. Social workers statement on this complex issue, nor is there were faulted for blaming the victim (Bass & a policy statement on VIOLENCE against women GUEST EDITORIAL 217.)
8 That might include DOMESTIC VIOLENCE as a tion curriculum, including practice, social component. While NASW has addressed stan- policy, and research courses, or treating this dards for competent practice in the areas of content separately in an elective. Missing is a school social work, cultural competency, and dialogue regarding how race, sexual orienta- social work with adolescents, no such stan- tion, age, disability, spirituality, and socio- dards for DOMESTIC VIOLENCE exist. However, economic status impact responses to DOMESTIC there has been one Practice Update on Gen- VIOLENCE , as well as the multitude of ethical der-Based VIOLENCE and Health of Adolescent issues that working with abused women and Girls (NASW, 2001). Similarly, there have their children often raise, such as the question been no published efforts to identify social of mandatory reporting of DOMESTIC VIOLENCE , work practice competencies.
9 The complexity of supporting the self-deter- mination rights of clients, and how best to Do Social Workers Feel address children exposed to VIOLENCE . There Academically Prepared to Address has also been no discussion of the effective- DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ? ness of particular teaching methodologies or That is a good question. In one recent the relative importance of teaching different exploratory study, the majority of respon- skills and knowledge. dents felt they had none to a little academic preparation (Danis, 2003). We are unaware of How Has Social Work Education any other recently published data on the sub- Responded to This Issue With Regard to Curricula? ject and encourage social work programs to include questions on this topic in their stu- How many programs address this issue dent evaluations and alumni surveys.
10 Through separate electives or through inte- gration in foundation or advanced courses? If How Has the Journal of Social Work content is integrated, what is included, how Education Addressed This Issue? is it included, and are the teaching method- Two in 20; that is two articles in the past ologies used effective? In a recent National 20 years published in the Journal of Social Work Institute of Medicine report entitled, Con- Education, and both articles have come in the fronting Chronic Neglect, social work pro- past decade. One article in the fall of 1991 grams as well as other health professions, discussed a teaching model for content on such as nursing and medicine, are chided for VIOLENCE against women (Stout, 1991), while not doing enough to address family VIOLENCE the other article addressed a human behavior issues in the curriculum (Cohn, Salmon, &.)