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Empowerment
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  • 1. Empowerment Pup 2171 Linda Moss
  • 2. Power
    • Power is an ever-present phenomenon in social life
    • In all human groups some individuals have more authority or influence than others
    • Groups themselves vary in levels of power
    • Power and inequality tend to be closely related
    • The powerful are able to accumulate valued resources such as property or wealth
    • Possession of such resources is in turn a means of generating power
    • (Giddens 1993 in Thompson 1998)
  • 3. Privilege
    • Do certain social groups or individuals have more privileges?
    • What are these groups or who are the individuals?
    • What are the privileges?
    • How does privilege relate to discrimination?
  • 4. People who are not privileged are devalued
    • Menace
    • Object of ridicule
    • Burden
    • Sick
    • Eternal child
    • Subhuman creature
  • 5. 4 Levels of Power
    • National and World
    • Community
    • Organisational
    • Individual
    • The way power is used is important not that it exists
  • 6. Oppression
    • Unjust humanly imposed restrictions on people’s freedom (Jaggar 1983 in Nzira and Williams 2009)
    • Exercise of authority or power in a burdensome, harsh or wrongful manner; unjust or cruel treatment of subjects, inferiors etc; the imposition of unreasonable or unjust burdens
    • (Oxford Dictionary)
  • 7. Empowerment on three levels
    • Personal;
    • Individuals can be helped to
    • Gain control over their lives in a variety of ways
    • Through enhancement of confidence and self-esteem
  • 8. Judith Snow 2007
    • The community is denied the talents, gifts, contributions and opportunities of all the people who are excluded. The answer is simple; see me as gifted, not as disabled.
    • Throw away the concept of disability. Welcome the concept of giftedness.
  • 9. Cultural
    • Discriminatory assumptions and stereotypes can be challenged
    • in an attempt to break down an
    • Oppressive culture in which
    • Values and interests of dominant groups are presented as normal and natural
    • Empowerment is therefore concerned with consciousness raising – becoming aware of ideologies premised on inequality
  • 10. Structual
    • Power relations are rooted in the structure of society so
    • Empowerment at this level must involve
    • Eradication in the long-term of structured inequalities
    • This involves a collective political response
    • A concerted programme of action for social change
    • Thompson 1998
  • 11. Personal empowerment and structural change
    • Low level of empowerment =
    • Structures continue unchanged
    • High level of empowerment =
    • The potential for structural change is increased
  • 12. Empowerment
    • Gaining more control over own life
    • Being aware of and using personal resources
    • Overcoming obstacles to meeting needs and aspirations
    • Having your voice heard in decision making
    • Being able to challenge inequality and oppression in your life
    • (Kirton and Virdee 1992 cited Dalrymple and Burke 2003)
  • 13. To Empower
    • One has to be able to hold on to and defend one’s value perspective
    • Have some critical awareness of the interaction between individuals
    • It is about not making assumptions and asking the question why
    • Critical analysis is the forerunner to empowerment
  • 14. In Human services
    • The actions of human service workers can help people to become more powerful (empowerment)
    • Or can reinforce their sense of powerlessness (disempowerment)
    • It is for this reason that an understanding of power issues is necessary
    • In order to increase the likelihood of
    • A POSITIVE EMPOWERING OUTCOME
  • 15. References
    • Thompson N., 1998, Promoting Equality, Challenging discrimination and oppression in the human services, Hampshire, Palgrave
    • Dalrymple J., Burke B.,2003, Anti-Oppressive Practice, social care and the law, Maidenhead, Open University Press
  • 16. References
    • Nzira V., Williams p., 2009, Anti-Oppressive Practice in Health and social Care London, Sage Publications