Episode 69 - Dr. Patricia Carlson and Dr. Nancy Humphreys: The Walmartization of Social Services: Impacts and Ethical Considerations of When Clients Become Workers

Monday, April 18, 2011, 9:00:33 AM

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Drs. Patricia Carlson and Nancy Humphreys discuss findings of state and national studies examining the phenomenon of women who leave the welfare rolls and become employees of social service agencies. This conversation addresses prevalence, impact, and ethical implications.

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Average Rating: 5stars  though provoking discussion. , Tuesday, December 17, 2013

By RF :

Great discussion on the use of current/former clients in employment role. Having worked for a community agency has done this (with high level of regard for ethical and boundary issues in these cases with highly enforced policies/procedures to back things up) it was interesting to hear this perspective. While I cannot speak for all organizations in our case were often hiring current/former clients as a result of their pursuing additional education in the field (often at an associates degree level) and seeking employment in the human services/social work field. Many of these individuals as a result of their experiences seeking assistance wanted to work in the field, the classic helper/helpee scenario. In my case, we were not hiring them as " low" wages to take advantage but as a result of being a non profit and paying what we could as a result of budgets and fundraising. It is unfortunate to hear that there are organizations hiring them due to the ability to pay low wages. This is an important issue for all types of organizations to consider especially with increasing access to social work/human service programs on-line, etc. I am a bit late listening to this podcast. Would love to hear an update since it's been several years since the original research and discussion.

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Average Rating: 5stars  thought-provoking ethics , Monday, January 30, 2012

By ILB :

I was unfamiliar with the term Walmartization when it comes to individuals working in the social service field. It leaves me with great unrest that so many agencies would take advantage of the less fortunate former clients and leave them uninsured and underemployed. The prevalence of how many individuals that come to work in the same agency that they were treated in also seems to be a very huge ethical issue that is being ignored by many agencies. It would seem this type of conflict of interest should be investigated by a governing body to protect both past and future clients as well as the social worker. The podcast brought up many other interesting subject matters and was very intellectually stimulating without becoming dry.

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Average Rating: 5stars  episode 69, Wednesday, January 25, 2012

By NT :

This podcast was interesting to me especially because it made me think of things that had never crossed my mind. Before listening to it, I was unaware that so many agencies actually hire people who previously used their services and were clients. I did not even know that was ethical. This podcast did address some ethical issues involved in hiring former recipients but I still do not know how they continue to allow it. The conflict of interest seems to be too high. I also found it interesting that once off welfare and into these jobs, they seemed to be better off using the welfare. No health benefits and less than full-time hours? That just is not fair. This podcast really opened my eyes to a new topic and area of discussion. I enjoyed listening to it.

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