Policy & Practice

A professional journal publishing articles on current health and human services issues for wide audience. Coverage includes social policy issues, reports of significant works of human service practitioners, social work theory and legislation, and editoria

Articles from Vol. 67, No. 2, April

A Case of Stigma
I sometimes call myself "a lawyer for welfare bureaucrats"--just to get all the negatives out there at once. And I know that the bureaucrats themselves don't like that old word "welfare." Hence, all the Departments of "Human Services" and the "Family...
Administration's Eight Guiding Principles for Health Reform
On March 10, the Senate Finance Committee heard from Peter Orszag, director of the Office of Management and Budget, on the health care proposals in the president's FY 2010 budget. Orszag explained that he would not be providing information about the...
California Lawmakers Weigh Extending Foster Care through Age 21
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- A group of bipartisan California legislators vowed to be better parents to the state's foster youths, pledging to extend their life-sustaining benefits through age 21 rather than casting them off as teenagers. Currently, most...
Children and the Economic Recovery Package
The economic recovery packages passed by Congress include provisions specifically targeted to children--increases in education, Head Start, child care subsidies, the Earned Income Tax Credit, and the Children's Tax Credit. These are buttressed by provisions...
Cyber Threats May Be Hazardous to Your Privacy
Nearly every day our nation is discovering new threats and attacks against our country's networks. Inadequate cybersecurity and loss of information has inflicted unacceptable damage to U.S. economic and national security." That is the sobering assessment...
Innovative Human Service Lessons For-And Learned From-South Africa
Margaret J. Wheatley once stated, "Innovation is fostered by information gathered from new connections; from insights gained by journeys into other disciplines or places; from active, collegial networks and fluid, open boundaries." When I presented...
In Our Doers Profile, We Highlight Some of the Hardworking and Talented Individuals in Public Human Services. This Issue Features Don Jordan of the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services
Name: Don Jordan Title: Secretary Years of Service: 33 total, two as secretary Rewards of the Job: I began my career in social services as a front-line worker and to this day, meeting with clients and the staff who work directly with them...
Keys to Successful Privatization Efforts
The notion that public and private human service providers are two separate and distinct sectors is a misnomer. Historically, a substantial percentage of public budgets is used to purchase service from private providers and a significant portion of...
Modernizing Human Services: Now More Than Ever
In the last few years, we have witnessed an emerging transformation in the way workforce and human service agencies deliver services. After decades mired in operational silos, leading workforce and human service agencies began to tear down the walls...
Most Common Writing Mistakes-3
Most writing errors are a mixture of misspellings and grammatical errors, although these days there is an increasingly thin line between what is right and what is acceptable as proper usage, what is literate and what's colorful. Over my past 31 years...
Now Is the Time to Tell Our Stories
A former Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services was fond of telling folks that the Chinese symbol for "crisis" is a double symbol representing both "challenge" and "opportunity." The economic crisis is an opportunity...
Putting It All Together
In these challenging and fast-moving (downward for now) economic times, our focus naturally turns to job creation as our most pressing need. For low-income individuals and workers who have been even more negatively affected by the recession than other...
Sen. Bob Casey Seeks Federal Aid for Homeless Kids
The youngest victims of the recession are highlighted in a new report released that estimates that one in 50 children in America--about 1.5 million--are homeless each year. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] The National Center on Family Homelessness report,...
Strategies That Help Staff and Clients
For those of us working in the health and human service field, these are very challenging--and often frustrating--times. The challenge lies in trying to meet the significant needs of a growing number of individuals and families seeking our services...
Texas' Call Centers Make It Easier to Apply for Services
Over the past few years, Texas has worked to modernize the system we use to enroll low-income Texans in Medicaid, SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) food benefits and other social service programs. It's a lot like trying to remodel a...
Texas Child Protection Service Strives to Keep Families Together
DALLAS--According to data included in the Children's Campaign Report published by Austin-based children's advocate lobby Texans Care for Children, child abuse and neglect costs the United States an estimated $104 billion annually. A 2007 study conducted...
The Access Florida Experience
There is a new attitude in Florida's public assistance programs; the attitude of an energized work force that says "I Can, We Can." This attitude is at the core of Florida's successful and nationally recognized ACCESS program. ACCESS (Automated Community...
The Boy Who Rode East
Bill Taylor is a young man who loves to see Washington, D.C. He had the opportunity to spend five weeks in the nation's capital to realize his dream. And he was fortunate that one of those five weeks included the week when Barack Obama was sworn in...
The Public/private Partnership
AS CHILD WELFARE agencies and systems are faced with challenges in delivering a service array that can meet the needs of the children and families they serve, they often turn to private providers to deliver many of the direct services. Private providers...
There Is Opportunity in Every Crisis
We've run out of adjectives to describe the times, but the county-administered safety net programs in California are under siege. Over a year ago, the housing meltdown in our county began to drag all other aspects of the local economy down with it....
The Sounds of Silence
In preparing for the theme of privatization for this issue of Policy and Practice, a recent court case in Luzerne County, Pa., struck a chord within me. On Feb. 12, former Judges Mark Ciavarella and Michael Conahan pled guilty in federal court to accepting...
Turn Bad News into Good Stories
A cartoon on my office bulletin board summarizes our struggle, not only as communications specialists, but also as cash-strapped human service organizations: "Our company lost $900 million last quarter. Your job is to make this look like the best thing...
Washington Update
Stimulus Legislation Heads For Implementation On Feb. 17, President Obama signed into law a much-debated and historically unprecedented piece of legislation, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Tax Act of 2009. The bill's final version totaled...
Who Loses If We Limit Tax Exclusion for Health Insurance?
Employer-sponsored plans are the predominant form of health insurance in the United States. Nearly 63 percent of Americans under the age of 65 have employment-based coverage through the workplace, either as an employee, dependent or retiree. One reason...
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