Skip to content

CALL TO ACTION – Social Agencies

August 12, 2013


Today’s post may sound a bit self indulgent. I apologize in advance if it does because I will be the first to admit that it is a direct response to a personal experience, one of many, actually, that has led me to this point.

I do not claim to be a businesswoman, but I have had my share of experience with various jobs so as to have a bit of a basic understanding of profit and loss and how important efficiency is in order to have a successful venture.

I have chosen a career, however, that is based in a much more system philosophy, with relatively most of its existence centering around methods of delivery of services to the public through agencies.

Simply put, there is no business that would even dream of surviving with the degree of incompetence, waste, mismanagement and overall inefficiency that continues to exist and frightfully increase in the social service agencies I deal with on a day to day basis!

In business, companies refer to their Prime Directive as a Mission Statement. Having said that, this is my premise regarding social services. Social service agencies exist with the intention of improving the quality of lives of the people they serve. They are created from a societal need that caring people have seen and decided required intervention in order to improve.

Child Protection Services Logo

Child Protection Services Logo

An example of this would be Child Protection Agencies that were started due to the maltreatment, abuse, neglect and danger posed to children who are not able to speak for themselves or care for themselves. Social workers, courts, mental health workers, medical workers, legal services, housing and more all have to come together for many of the children to be able to be cared for and it starts with the intervention of a Child Protective Agent who provides these things for the child either with the family, or by placing them where they are provided with these things. Their ‘job’ is to help these children and when appropriate, their families.

If there were a business that failed to produce positive results it wouldn’t be around for long. If there were a business that demonstrated as much waste of resources and doubling of efforts required and letting things fall through the cracks, they would not be able to survive.

I truly scratch my head regularly when I see first-hand how frequently this is the case with social service agencies involved with the children we have in our care. Caseworkers have more forms and paperwork that needs to be completed, documenting so many unnecessary things under the pretense of outcome directed. The truth is there is little or no progress made with so many of the children who become part of the system. So few of them go on to further their education or to become contributors and productive adults.

Child Welfare

Child Welfare

Rather, if one were to compare statistics of ‘graduates’ of the systems now compared to years ago, they would find fewer living independently without requiring additional government support once they come of age. They would find more homeless people, drug-related crimes and victims, mental health cases, and so on.

Any type of business would run some type of quality control measure that would show its operators results so they could determine what is and isn’t working properly. Any type of business would review their findings and decide to keep things that work and eliminate costly non-productive elements so as to improve and increase production; to be more successful.

Yet the more I live to see in my personal experiences as time goes by, the less progress I see. The children are in worse condition when they get here, so damaged by going through the system, that their futures are not only promising, but dismal.

Caseworkers are so overworked with administrative crap, they care less and less all the time. The few that DO care, end up learning that they can look forward to little more than being bruised and battered by the system they work in, if they stand up for what they believe in their hearts is the right thing.

The children learn that they can manipulate the system for what they believe they want, but in all honesty, they get so very little of what they truly need.

If I had my wish, this would serve as a call to action for the Social Service System to take a REAL look at the lack of positive results our current system is yielding and all the money and resources wasting away while situations continue to get worse every day.

Any ideas on how else to go about it – – – I’m all ears!


I’m a licensed clinical social worker and have worked extensively as a counselor with children, adolescents, couples and families. I combine professional experience in the mental health field along with my love of writing to provide insight into real-life experiences and relationships. I hope my down-to-earth approach to living a happier, more meaningful life is easy to understand and just as easy to start implementing right away for positive results!

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: