This chapter demonstrates how social work ethics apply to ethical and legal decision making in forensic social work practice. It discusses the context of social work practice in legal systems. The chapter also details the basic structures of the United States (U.S.) civil and criminal legal systems. It lays the foundation for the criminal and civil court processes in the United States and introduces basic terminology and a description of associated activities and progression through these systems. The chapter focuses on providing an introductory, and overarching, picture of both civil and criminal law in the U.S. and introduces the roles social workers play in these systems. It focuses on the ETHICA model of ethical decision making as a resource and tool that can be used to help forensic social workers process difficult and complex situations across multiple systems.
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- Go to chapter: Social Work and the Law: An Overview of Ethics, Social Work, and Civil and Criminal Law
This chapter explains the theoretical basis for motivational interviewing (MI). It reviews the empirical evidence for the use of MI with diverse populations in forensic settings. MI involves attention to the language of change, and is designed to strengthen personal motivation and commitment to a specific goal by eliciting and exploring the person’s own reasons for change within an atmosphere of acceptance and compassion. It is now internationally recognized as an evidence-based practice intervention for alcohol and drug problems. MI involves an underlying spirit made up of partnership, acceptance, compassion, and evocation. The chapter discusses four key processes involved in MI: engaging, focusing, evoking, and planning. It also describes five key communication microskills used throughout MI: asking open-ended questions, providing affirmations, offering summarizing statements, providing information and advice with permission, and reflective statements.
This chapter presents an overview of the restorative justice movement in the twenty-first century. Restorative justice, on the other hand, offers a very different way of understanding and responding to crime. Instead of viewing the state as the primary victim of criminal acts and placing victims, offenders, and the community in passive roles, restorative justice recognizes crime as being directed against individual people. The values of restorative justice are also deeply rooted in the ancient principles of Judeo-Christian culture. A small and scattered group of community activists, justice system personnel, and a few scholars began to advocate, often independently of each other, for the implementation of restorative justice principles and a practice called victim-offender reconciliation (VORP) during the mid to late 1970s. Some proponents are hopeful that a restorative justice framework can be used to foster systemic change. Facilitation of restorative justice dialogues rests on the use of humanistic mediation.
This chapter describes some of the recent restorative justice innovations and research that substantiates their usefulness. It explores developments in the conceptualization of restorative justice based on emergence of new practices and reasons for the effectiveness of restorative justice as a movement and restorative dialogue as application. Chaos theory offers a better way to view the coincidental timeliness of the emergence of restorative justice as a deeper way of dealing with human conflict. The chapter reviews restorative justice practices that have opened up areas for future growth. Those practices include the use of restorative practices for student misconduct in institutions of higher education, the establishment of surrogate dialogue programs in prison settings between unrelated crime victims and offenders. They also include the creation of restorative justice initiatives for domestic violence and the development of methods for engagement between crime victims and members of defense teams who represent the accused offender.
As everyone knows, true creativity comes from simple formulas and the memorization of data. This chapter focuses on divergent thinking tests, which are still the most common way that creativity is measured. Guilford derived the core ideas behind divergent thinking as well as many popular measures. The people who score the Torrance Tests are specifically trained to distinguish responses that are truly original from those that are just bizarre. There are other tests that measure creativity, but most are either a variation on divergent thinking or use some type of raters. For example, the Evaluation of Potential Creativity (EPOC) has begun to be used in some studies and may be promising, but is still largely rooted in a mix of divergent thinking scoring and raters. Another test is the Finke Creative Invention Task, which is clever but also requires raters for scoring.
The Big Five, which this chapter discusses in more detail, are extraversion, neuroticism, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness to experience. Each of these five factors represents a continuum of behavior, traits, and inclinations. There are some popular personality measures that use different theories, such as Eysenck’s Personality Questionnaire, which looks at extraversion and neuroticism as well as psychoticism. The personality factor most associated with creativity is openness to experience. Indeed, one way that researchers study creativity is by giving creative personality tests. Being open to new experiences may also help creative people be more productive. King found that people who were creative and high on openness to experience were more likely to report creative accomplishments. DeYoung and S. B. Kaufman, of course, are not the only people to blend or split different factors of personality to present new models. Fürst, Ghisletta, and Lubart suggest three factors: plasticity, divergence, and convergence.
This chapter explores three ’classic’ studies of creativity and mental illness. The first is Jamison whose focus is on the connection between bipolar disorder and creativity. The second is Andreasen, who used structured interviews to analyze 30 creative writers, 30 matched controls, and first-degree relatives of each group. The writers had a higher rate of mental illness, with a particular tendency toward bipolar and other affective disorders. The third major work is Ludwig, who utilized the historiometric technique. All three studies have come under serious criticism. Many of the studies of Big-C creators are historiometric, akin to Ludwig’s work. Some such studies claim that eminent creators show higher rates of mental illness. A much more common approach is to look at everyday people and give them measures of creativity and mental health. Typically, researchers look at what are called subclinical disorders—in other words, they’re not clinically significant.
One school admissions area that already uses creativity is gifted admissions—which students are chosen to enter gifted classes, programs, or after-school activities. Both education and business play great lip service to creativity. Puccio and Cabra review the literature on creativity and organizations and do a nice job of highlighting how every couple of years, a new report from industry emphasizes the importance of creativity. It is important to note that there is a large inconsistency between gender differences on creativity tests and actual creative accomplishment. Although gender differences on creativity tests are minor or nonexistent, differences in real-world creative accomplishment are large and significant. This chapter shows how creativity can play a role in admissions and hiring. Hiring measures tend to have better validity, even the general mental ability (GMA) measures; even if minorities score lower, the accuracy of prediction is consistent by ethnicity.
Creative people are also often seen as being outsiders and eccentric. Sen and Sharma’s examination of creativity beliefs in India tested beliefs about the Four P’s and found that creativity was more likely to be described as a holistic essence of an individual, and less likely to be focused on the product or process. Romo and Alfonso studied Spanish painters and found that one of the implicit theories that the painters held about creativity involved the role of psychological disorders. Plucker and Dana found that past histories of alcohol, marijuana, and tobacco usage were not correlated with creative achievements; familial drug and alcohol use also was not significantly associated with creative accomplishments or creative personality attributes. Humphrey, McKay, Primi, and Kaufman did find that illegal drug use predicted self-reported creative behaviors even when openness to experience was controlled.
This chapter aims to give the behavioral health specialist (BHS) a basic understanding of pain, knowledge about how to effectively evaluate chronic pain, and a description of effective pain management techniques. Knowledge of the biological and psychological basis of pain is important to understanding the experience of chronic pain. A biopsychosocial assessment is the foundation for providing behavioral health treatment to the chronic pain patient. Chronic pain is less responsive to treatments commonly used for acute pain such as opioid analgesia and avoiding physical activity. A multidisciplinary team approach can substantially improve outcomes in chronic pain treatment. Whatever the format of service provision, utilizing multiple interventions such as physical therapy/exercise, emotional management, pacing, and medication, rather than a single modality can substantially improve outcomes for chronic pain. Providing psychoeducation about chronic pain can be an important strategy.