WEEK 8 READING (1) - Assessing initial contacts in involuntary…
WEEK 8 READING (1) - Assessing initial contacts in involuntary transactions:
They are working explanations of persons, problems, and situations and their dynamic interaction.
They are developed to aid the client and practitioner in formulating a plan of action.
How can practitioners assess individuals while reducing their contribution to labelling and secondary deviance?
Agencies can act through alternative programs developed for diverting many first-time juvenile offenders from formal court processing.
Practitioners can be sensitive to the specific contingencies surrounding events leading to identification of deviant activity.
The practitioner can act preventively to alleviate conditions that lead to primary deviance.
The categories of criticism and negative judgement which are constructed and applied successfully to some members of a social community by others, and is a quality/behaviour attributed by others.
All cultures use agents of social control to encourage non-deviant behaviour, and discourage or change deviant behaviour. Agents include schools, the criminal justice system, medical professionals and child protection agencies.
Many people who are engaged in behaviours that society has labeled as deviant (eg. mistreating children, drink driving, DV) become involuntary clients of practitioners at these agencies/organisations.
Deviance = Individual pathology:
The focus is on abnormal behaviour that should be corrected by social agents and therapists.
The cause is said to be within the personal history of the person (rather than within society or the practitioner's ability to detect and label deviants).
The client is seen as the problem
Structural model of deviance:
Suggests that ones ability to reach goals such as wealth and status are hindered for those of lower SES.
Highlights the role that access to resources and opportunities has on creating circumstances that lead to deviance.
We might hypothesise that more involuntary and deviant clients are CREATED in times of economic hardship and lack of resources.
Suggests that society-wide prevention efforts to distribute resources and opportunities would reduce the conditions leading to deviance.
Negative of this view however is that it doesn't taken into account individual choice and action. Not all individuals in similarly deprived conditions use deviant means. There are also people with high access to societal rewards that take part in deviant/illegal behaviour.
Social Labelling perspective:
No behaviour is considered inherently deviant.
Society is seen as CREATING deviance by setting rules that define it.
Different cultures define different behaviours as deviant.
The response of society may interact with the response of the person labelled deviant to create and maintain a deviant role.
This perspective ignores choice to participate in the act that is labeled deviant.
Primary deviance -
acting to violate social norms without being observed by others and hence not labeled as deviant by them.
Secondary deviance - When a person labelled deviant responds to that labelling by acting to take on a deviant role.
Factors such as age, race, sex, power and social status influence who will be identified as deviant and who will not.
This perspective suggests that persons labeled deviant often respond to protect their identity, to avoid isolation and stigma.
Defensive Responses include:
Rationalising, minimising or denying harm
Discrediting the alleged victim
These responses are often interpreted as further evidence of pathology and deviance, rather than normalised as a typical response to the labelling process or involuntary treatment services.
Social labelling is not a sufficient explanation for what results in hospitalisation (mental health issue), but it may delay progress if the client is not empowered to participate in recovery.
INTEGRATIVE MODEL OF DEVIANCE:
Individual pathology model:
Focus on abnormal behaviour of individuals to be corrected by therapy and rehab.
Tends to ignore structural, social reaction, and labelling effects.
Focus on restricted access to resources needed to achieve goals
Tends to ignore choice and rule breaking by more powerful persons.
Social Labelling model:
Focus on social response contingencies in creating deviant role through labelling.
Tends to ignore role of choice and blames the social labellers.
To a lot of practitioners, resistance is defined as 'client behaviour that is considered inappropriate and not in line with the plans of the practitioner has for the client... So basically,
'resistance' is a label assigned by practitioners to clients who have not acted to the practitioner's satisfaction.
Behaviours/attitudes associated with the resistant label:
Refusal to answer
Lateness for appointments
Changing the subject.
Normal and expected behaviour
Unconscious behaviour, out of the person's control
Practitioner's responsibility to control and reduce behaviour
Clients are voluntary or at least consciously agree to goals
Conscious behaviour that is chosen to be carried out
Client responsibility and blame
Client is involuntary and deviant
It's an opportunity for a targeted intervention and increasing client motivation to change.
A mental state in which a person is considering change but is not ready to make a commitment to action.
Normalises peoples responses to pressured situations / coercion.
Highlights that most people respond to pressure / coercion with some type of resistance
It assumes that we each have behaviours that we are free to exercise, and should one of these free behaviours be threatened or eliminated, the person will experience
If valued freedoms can be maintained with means still available, then the threatened freedom may not have unique value.
Reactance occurs in relation to the
of freedoms threatened or eliminated - If the number of choices is small, removing any of them will cause considerable reactance.
An increase in pressure on the client creates more reactance which then creates more negative behaviour
Direct / Indirect response patterns designed to regain 'free' behaviour:
Direct efforts - when the person attempts to recapture the freedom directly, in spite of the consequences.
Restoring freedom indirectly - bending the rules or finding a loop hole without technically violating the rules.
Reducing reactance by observing another person attempting to restore freedom or attempting to get others to perform forbidden behaviours.
Increased desire to perform the forbidden behaviour.
Expressing hostility or aggression towards the source of the threat (even when it is unlikely to restore freedom).
STRATEGIES TO REDUCE REACTANCE/ GET FREEDOM BACK:
Avoid giving directives to the client and clarify their available choices
Attribute behaviour to the situation, not the client
Emphasise the freedoms the person still has.
Be specific if taking a freedom away from someone, don't make it broad or they will feel like they lost something big... Seperate requirements from what remains free.
Minimise persuasion efforts by offering multiple alternatives to the freedom that has been taken away.
STRATEGIES TO INCREASE REACTANCE/TAKE ADVANTAGE OF HIGH LEVEL:
Heighten the importance of the free behaviour
Imply or state threats to future freedoms
It suggests that pressures generating reactance can be:
Personal / in response to direct coercion
Impersonal / constraining barriers that make engaging in a behaviour more difficult or impossible
Efforts to manage the impressions others have of us, in order to better reach our goals.
Clients often attempt to put their situation in the best light by selective reporting, so that the therapist or other expert will look favourably on them.
Keeping secrets from therapists is common
Attempts to make oneself more attractive in order to influence a person in power to act favourably
Eg. flattery, overemphasising own traits, public agreement with opinions you don't actually agree with.
Creating a fearful impression or making threats
Usually occurs when the intimidator has access to resources the target doesn't or when the target can't retaliate.
When the person with less power anticipates blame from the higher power person, they may deny the charge, justify their actions or selectively confess to particular problems to diffuse the impact of anticipated negative feedback.
when clients point out their own negative characteristics, advertise their dependency and inability to cope, and throw themselves at the mercy of the higher-power person in an effort to acquire sympathy and support.
Emphasises one's best qualities
Creates an impression of competence (rather than likeability, which is the aim with ingratiation)
Efforts to convey an impression of integrity and moral worthiness.
Involves self promotion