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A client evaluation of the personal support and development network Dorin, Casey Shane 1990

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A C l i e n t Evaluation of the Personal Support and Development Network by Casey Shane Dorin B.A. The University of V i c t o r i a , 1982 B.S.W. The University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1989 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF SOCIAL WORK in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (School of Social Work) We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the reguired standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA June, 1990 (cT)casey Shane Dorin In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of S o c i a l Work The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada Date J u l y 12, 1990 DE-6 (2/88) A C l i e n t Evaluat ion of the Personal Support and Development Network ABSTRACT In recent years , there has been a trend i n Canada towards a model of s o c i a l ass istance which i s p r o - a c t i v e i n ge t t ing people o f f s o c i a l ass istance and in to the labour force . Despite the p r o l i f e r a t i o n of supply-s ide focussed programs emphasizing t r a i n i n g and employment-counse l l ing , however, there has been l i t t l e research and evaluat ion of workfare models i n the Canadian context. The purpose of t h i s study i s to explore the primary and secondary e f f ec t s , as perceived by the c l i e n t s , of a three month employment-counselling program (PSDN) that serves long-term unemployed s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s i n Edmonton, A l b e r t a . The q u a l i t a t i v e study u t i l i z e s a bas ic time ser ies (A-B) design for exploratory-d e s c r i p t i v e purposes. Four categories of p a r t i c i p a n t s i n the PSDN program are i d e n t i f i e d : React ive, Pro -ac t ive , Res t r i c t ed and Reluctant . The f indings suggest that p o l i c i e s and programs need to acknowledge the d i v e r s i t y and heterogeneity of problems being faced by the unemployed on s o c i a l ass i s tance . There are p o t e n t i a l benef i t s i n i i developing programs for the unemployed on s o c i a l ass is tance which are f l e x i b l e , p o s i t i v e , mot ivat ing, and support ive . C l i e n t s require d i f f e r e n t l e v e l s of intervent ions and services depending on t h e i r needs. i i i TABLE OF CONTENTS page T i t l e Page i Abstract i i Table of Contents i v Acknowledgement v i i i Chapter I : BACKGROUND AND PROBLEM AREA Introduct ion 1 S t i cks or Carrots? Long-term Unemployment and S o c i a l Assistance 4 Chapter I I : LITERATURE REVIEW Introduct ion 12 The Changing Dynamics of Unemployment and S o c i a l Assistance 12 The Meaning of Work 19 The Psycho-Social Ef fec t s of Unemployment.. 22 The Development of S o c i a l Assistance i n Canada 35 The Ef f ec t s of S o c i a l Assistance 49 Recent Welfare I n i t i a t i v e s 61 Employment I n i t i a t i v e s i n the United States 64 Employment I n i t i a t i v e s i n Canada 72 i v Conclusion • 82 Chapter I I I : THE RESEARCH PROBLEM Introduct ion 86 The Personal Support and Development Network (PSDN) 86 Impetus for Study 90 Issues to be Researched 92 Rat ionale For Se lec t ion of Problems for Research 93 Approach of the Study 94 Knowledge-Building Function 96 Conceptual Framework of Research 97 Relat ionship of Study to Research 100 Chapter IV: RESEARCH DESIGN Methodological Or ienta t ion 105 Control Over Phenomena to be Studied 109 Sampling Design I l l Sample Size and Heterogeneity 112 Timing of Data C o l l e c t i o n 114 Data C o l l e c t i o n 115 Data Analys i s 118 Presentat ion of Results 122 E t h i c a l Issues 123 v Chapter V: FINDINGS Introduct ion 125 General Issues 128 Reactive P a r t i c i p a n t s : Summary 143 Pro-ac t ive P a r t i c i p a n t s : Summary 144 R e s t r i c t e d P a r t i c i p a n t s : Summary 145 Reluctant P a r t i c i p a n t s : Summary 146 Reactive P a r t i c i p a n t s 147 (i) December Interviews 150 ( i i ) March Interviews 159 Pro -ac t ive P a r t i c i p a n t s 167 (i) December Interviews 168 ( i i ) March Interviews 177 R e s t r i c t e d Par t i c ipant s 183 (i) December Interviews 184 ( i i ) March Interviews 192 Reluctant P a r t i c i p a n t s 199 (i) December Interviews 200 ( i i ) March Interviews 206 Chapter V I : Conclusions and Implicat ions 214 L i s t of References 224 v i Appendices: Appendix A. Research Questions 242 Appendix B. Interview Consent Form 247 Appendix C. Template 248 Appendix D. Excerpts from Representative Interviews 259 Appendix E . Interview Abstracts 262 Appendix F . PSDN Consent Let ter 299 Appendix G. UBC Behavioural Sciences Screening Committee " C e r t i f i c a t e of Approval" 300 v i i Acknowledgement This work i s dedicated to the twenty-four i n d i v i d u a l s who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n the study. Extra Spec ia l Thanks: C a l l a and Ray. Spec ia l Thanks: Glenn Drover, John Crane, and Garry Rentz. Thanks: Maggie the baggie, Edmonton Saturday Morning Crew ( C o l i n , Sandy et a l . ) , Fort Road Gang (Maria, Diane, She l ley , et a l . ) , Sharon Manson Willms, Lonely Hearts Club (Rob, Ian, et a l . ) , UBC School of S o c i a l Work, PSDN S ta f f , Caro le , Heeth, Joan/Dan, Rentz fami ly , and Stuart and Hazel (BCASW). v i i i A C l i e n t Evaluat ion of the Support and Development Network Chapter I BACKGROUND AND PROBLEM AREA Introduct ion Long-term unemployment i s a major s o c i a l and economic concern that p e r s i s t despite improving economic condi t ions and d e c l i n i n g rates of unemployment. Peter S i n c l a i r states that unemployment "entai l s a massive loss of output and a t r a g i c waste of peoples l i v e s " (1987:v i i ) . The Report of the Hearing Panel on E t h i c a l Ref lec t ions on the Economic C r i s i s s tates that "unemployment i s not jus t a c e r t a i n number of people without work: i t i s a scourge that destroys people" (1983:2-3). Liebow writes that "unemployment does not, l i k e a i r p o l l u t i o n or God's gentle r a i n , f a l l uniformly upon everyone. . . i t s t r i k e s from underneath and i t s t r i k e s p a r t i c u l a r l y at those at the bottom of our society" ( H i l l and Bramley, 1986:46-47). The costs of unemployment and welfare dependency are not only high for the i n d i v i d u a l 1 but for soc ie ty as w e l l . Richard Deaton (1983) estimated the s o c i a l and economic costs of unemployment i n Canada at more than 76 B i l l i o n d o l l a r s during the peak of the recess ion . This was from l o s t product ion, foregone earnings, l o s t revenue to government, unemployment insurance payments, and the s o c i a l costs of i n d i v i d u a l s t r e s s . The Report of The Royal Commission of Inquiry on Unemployment Insurance (1986) wrote that unemployment: . . . h a s a s i g n i f i c a n t impact not only on i n d i v i d u a l s but a l so on the economic and s o c i a l l i f e of a c o u n t r y . . . t h e extent of foregone output of goods and serv ices represents a s i g n i f i c a n t loss to everyone, both to soc iety and to i n d i v i d u a l s , (p. 33) From both an i n d i v i d u a l and s o c i e t a l perspect ive , the costs of unemployment, p a r t i c u l a r l y long-term unemployment, are staggering. Despite t h i s , s o c i a l ass is tance systems continue to approach unemployment from a p h i l o s o p h i c a l and s t r u c t u r a l perspect ive that evolved out of The El izabethan Poor Laws of nineteenth century England. Increas ingly , i t i s being recognized that the present approach to unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance i s not meeting the needs of r e c i p i e n t s or of soc ie ty and i s i n need of re-assessment. 2 The weaknesses of the s o c i a l ass istance system i n Canada are widely recognized. The Canadian Counci l on S o c i a l Development (1986) argues that the system has f a i l e d to deal e f f e c t i v e l y with poverty and has done l i t t l e to reduce income i n e q u a l i t i e s . Several major studies undertaken during the 1980*s i n Canada have been c r i t i c a l of the present approach to s o c i a l ass is tance for i t s cost , i n e f f i c i e n c y , complexity, inequi ty , i n a c c e s s i b i l i t y , and i t s tendency to trap people i n poverty and dependency (Manitoba, 1983; Adams, 1983; S o c i a l Ass is tance Review Committee, 1988; H a l i f a x , 1988; Nat ional Counci l of Welfare, 1987). Leon Muszynski (1987) wri tes that the present s o c i a l ass is tance system: . . . r e p r e s e n t s assured poverty, demeaning needs t e s t s , and l i t t l e incent ive , support, or opportunity to become independent . . . . for the p u b l i c i t creates work d i s i n c e n t i v e and represents a waste of taxpayers d o l l a r s , (p. 1) There seems to be general agreement on a l l s ides of the p o l i t i c a l spectrum that the time has come to r e -examine the present approach to s o c i a l ass is tance i n Canada. While there may be general agreement, there i s no consensus on how t h i s should be achieved. 3 St i cks or Carrots? Long-term Unemployment and S o c i a l  Ass is tance The unemployed on s o c i a l ass istance may have needs and problems which are not being addressed by p o l i c y makers but which may be a f f ec t ing t h e i r t r a n s i t i o n from dependency to independency. P o l i c i e s toward the unemployed on s o c i a l ass istance tend to be made from the top down with l i t t l e concern or input from those most af fected by the p o l i c i e s . This research projec t i s designed to explore the experiences and needs of the long-term unemployed from t h e i r perspect ive and to evaluate a program that represents a d i f f e r e n t approach towards long-term unemployed s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s . This supply-s ide c l i en t - focused evaluat ion of a supportive counse l l ing program developed for the long-term unemployed on s o c i a l ass istance i n Edmonton, A l b e r t a , i s q u a l i t a t i v e i n nature. The balance of t h i s chapter out l ines the general problem area of long-term unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance and the s ign i f i cance of the problem area to s o c i a l work. Chapter two reviews h i s t o r i c a l , economic, and psycho-soc ia l l i t e r a t u r e . Chapter three out l ines the 4 research problem and the issues to be s tudied . Chapter four d e t a i l s the methodology. Chapter f i ve presents the f indings and chapter s ix discusses the impl ica t ions and conclusions of the study. An issue that needs to be addressed by p o l i c y makers, welfare analysts , and soc iety i s why s o c i a l ass is tance caseloads remain high despite improving economic condi t ions , decreasing unemployment ra te s , and evidence that the vast majority of s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s prefer to be economically s e l f - s u f f i c i e n t . The research guestion being explored i s how does soc ie ty , s t r u c t u r a l l y and p h i l o s o p h i c a l l y , best f a c i l i t a t e , support, and encourage the movement of i n d i v i d u a l s from unemployment and dependency to s e l f - s u f f i c i e n c y and independency? The Economist (1988) points out that an i n t e r e s t i n g aspect of the issue i s that although both s ides of the p o l i t i c a l spectrum see the value i n get t ing the unemployed o f f s o c i a l ass is tance , they do not agree p h i l o s o p h i c a l l y or s t r u c t u r a l l y on the best way to accomplish t h i s goa l . In p a r t , the answer seems to be i n how you frame the quest ion. The New-right argues that the poor should not be encouraged to r e l y on the state for cash, some 5 argue for the v i r t u a l e l iminat ion of a l l government t rans fers to the poor (Mead, 1986; Morris & Wil l iamson, 1987). They f ee l that s o c i a l ass istance takes away the incent ive to work, encourages dependency, and fos ters a "moral hazard" (Mead, 1986; G i l d e r , 1981; Murray, 1984, Kaus, 1986). G i l d e r writes that " . . . r e a l poverty i s l ess a s tate of income than a state of m i n d . . . t h e government dole b l i g h t s most of the people who come to depend on i t " (1981:12). There has been, over the l a s t twenty years , an e f f o r t by the New-right to "establ ish a new moral bas i s for welfare" (The Economist, 1988:20). This perspect ive i s based on a b e l i e f that people are poor and unemployed by choice , are unmotivated and lazy , and that jobs are a v a i l a b l e for people who t r u l y want them (the q u a l i t y of jobs i s not a concern). Mead (1986) writes that : . . . t h e so lu t ion must l i e i n p u b l i c a u t h o r i t y . . . Author i ty achieves compliance more e f f i c i e n t l y than b e n e f i t s . . . T o some extent author i ty seeks to change i n d i v i d u a l s preferences as wel l as subordinate them to s o c i e t y ' s . Moral appeals are made to get people to accept non-compliance as l eg i t imate , not simply prudent. Only then i s compliance assured. (p.84) 6 The p o l i c i e s and s trateg ies u t i l i z e d to deal with the problem have, therefore , been negative and r e s i d u a l i n approach and focused on c o r r e c t i n g i n d i v i d u a l inadequacies. The p o l i c i e s have been based on the assumption that the best way to discourage people from becoming dependent on s o c i a l ass istance i s to create d i s incent ive s l i k e reducing benef i t s , t ighten ing e l i g i b i l i t y c r i t e r i a , and making i t harder and more d i f f i c u l t to apply f o r , and stay on, s o c i a l ass is tance (Davidson & Melchers, 1987; Manitoba, 1983; Lightman, 1987; Ross, 1978; Riches, 1985; Muszynski, 1987; Nat ional Counci l of Welfare, 1987). Not only have these " s t i c k -wielding" e f for t s been p a t e r n a l i s t i c and puni t ive i n approach, they have been unsuccessful i n dea l ing with the problem of long-term unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance dependency (National Counci l of Welfare, 1987; The Organizat ion for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1988; P e r r i n , 1987; S t a t i s t i c Canada, 1985; The S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto, 1989; Thornley, 1989; Torjman and B a t t l e , 1989; Muszynski, 1987, 1988; Ross, 1988; S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee, 1988; Assoc ia t ion of M u n i c i p a l i t i e s of Ontar io , 1987; Manitoba, 7 1983; H a l i f a x , 1986; Adams, 1983; Ross and S h i l l i n g t o n , 1989). The approach that has character ized the i n s t i t u t i o n a l response to unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance dependency i n recent years r e f l e c t s a lack of understanding about the s t r u c t u r a l , economic, and psycho-s o c i a l dynamics of unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance dependency i n the contemporary context. As Ellwood notes, "adopting a p o l i c y that recognizes no causes leads to no solut ions" (1988:87). The s tra teg ies that have been employed s ince the mid-1970's appear to be based on the r e a l i t i e s and assumptions of the 1930's and 1940's, and not of the 1980's and 1990's. The nature of unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance has changed d r a s t i c a l l y s ince the recessions of the ear ly 1970's but programs and p o l i c i e s have not r e f l e c t e d these changes (Sharpe, Voyer and Cameron, 1988; Organizat ion for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1988). The long-term unemployed on ass istance face a myriad of problems i n t h e i r e f for t s to re -enter the labour force: 1. A changing labour market character ized by reduced 8 economic growth, s i g n i f i c a n t labour market r e -s t r u c t u r i n g , and increased p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the labour market. 2. A detachment from the labour force , reduced l i k e l i h o o d of f ind ing employment and the loss of s k i l l s . 3. A lack of s k i l l s and t r a i n i n g , low l e v e l s of education and sporadic work h i s t o r i e s . 4. A s o c i a l ass istance system that tends to "trap" people on welfare through inadequate ra tes , demeaning needs t e s t s , d i s i n c e n t i v e s , a lack of incent ives , complexity of the system, d i s p a r i t i e s i n serv ices , lack of support mechanism, lack of program c o - o r d i n a t i o n , and a f a i l u r e to address the diverse and complex needs of the heterogeneous populat ion that makes up the welfare caseloads. 5. A v a r i e t y of negative psycho-soc ia l impacts that can e f f ec t i n d i v i d u a l s , f a m i l i e s , and communities. Unemployment can a f fec t the unemployed i n the form of anxiety , h o s t i l i t y , se l f -blame, shame, h u m i l i a t i o n , depression, loss of hope, apathy, i s o l a t i o n , fee l ings of i n f e r i o r i t y , re s ignat ion , d i s t r u s t of others , loss of se l f -conf idence , spousal abuse, a lcohol abuse, s u i c i d e , family s t re s s , mental i l l n e s s , crime, and s t r e s s - r e l a t e d 9 heal th d i sorders . Recent studies r e f l e c t an emerging awareness that the present approach of s o c i a l ass istance systems i n dea l ing with unemployment tends not to address the d iverse and complex problems and needs of the long-term unemployed on s o c i a l ass i s tance . Ellwood writes that "the l a s t th ing we want to do i s create a system that discourages and penal izes work and that i s o l a t e s and st igmatizes the very people who are s t rugg l ing hard to become part of the economic mainstream" (1988:105). The l i t e r a t u r e suggests that s o c i a l ass istance systems need to become more ac t ive i n t h e i r e f for t s to a s s i s t people "trapped" i n unemployment and assistance who want to move from dependency to s e l f - s u f f i c i e n c y . Long-term unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance dependency have d i r e c t relevance to s o c i a l work and yet i t i s an area that tends to be ignored by the profess ion ( B r i a r , 1978; F a i d , 1987; Ba l loch , Hume, Jones & Westland, 1985). Katherine B r i a r (1987) describes unemployment as a fundamental issue for s o c i a l work and argues that unemployment creates a v a r i e t y of problems that need to be addressed. B r i a r , Hoff and Seek argue that work can be seen at one extreme as a s o c i a l work 10 resource that promotes self-development or from the other extreme as "an instrument of s o c i a l i n j u s t i c e which i n f l i c t s harm" (1987:200). Schore (1987) writes that : the e f fec ts of work, or i t s absence, condi t ion a l l human r e l a t i o n s h i p s . . . for s o c i a l work to be f u l l y responsible and e f f e c t i v e , s o c i a l workers must acquire a deep understanding of work and how i t a f fec t s workers, (p. 44) 11 Chapter II LITERATURE REVIEW Introduct ion The l i t e r a t u r e review has been developed to place the problem studied i n a t h e o r e t i c a l framework and to develop a context for a c l i e n t evaluat ion of a supportive counse l l ing program for the long-term unemployed on s o c i a l ass is tance i n Edmonton, A l b e r t a . The review explores the changing dynamics of unemployment and s o c i a l ass istance over the l a s t twenty years , the c e n t r a l i t y of work, the psycho-soc ia l e f fec t s of unemployment, the h i s t o r i c a l development of s o c i a l ass is tance i n Canada, the e f fec ts of the present s o c i a l ass is tance system, and emerging trends i n s o c i a l ass i s tance . The Changing Dynamics of Unemployment and S o c i a l  Ass is tance Since the ear ly 1970's, there has been s i g n i f i c a n t economic and labour market change. During the recessions of 1974-75, 1977-78 and 1981-82 unemployment increased 12 s i g n i f i c a n t l y . From an average of 4.4% during 1966-70, unemployment averaged 6.1% during 1971-75 and 7.7% during 1976-81 (Sharpe, Voyer, and Cameron, 1988). The recess ion of 1981-82 produced an unemployment rate over 10% from 1982-85 (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1988). Although o f f i c i a l unemployment rates have dropped since 1985, many economic forecasters p r e d i c t high unemployment rates through at l eas t 1992 (Sharpe et a l . , 1988; Krahn, 1987). I t i s important to note that o f f i c i a l unemployment rates probably understate the impact of unemployment. The o f f i c i a l d e f i n i t i o n of the unemployed excludes discouraged workers who are no longer looking for work. S t a t i s t i c s Canada states that the number of these discouraged workers rose from 83,000 i n March, 1979 to 197,000 i n March, 1983, before d e c l i n i n g to 105,000 i n March, 1986 (Sharpe et a l . , 1988). O f f i c i a l unemployment rates a l so do not d i s t i n g u i s h between part - t ime and f u l l -time work (Sharpe et a l . , 1988). Bergman (1988) adds that there are other measurement problems with c a l c u l a t i n g the actual rates of unemployment inc lud ing no concern with the nature, permanency, or q u a l i t y of job that may have been es tabl i shed , and the fac t that 13 homeless people are not included i n the f i gures . Another s i g n i f i c a n t change created by the recessions was the durat ion of unemployment (Ross, 1979). The S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto writes that the pers is tence of long-term unemployment i s "related to the fact that the economic changes occurr ing reduce the demand for the s k i l l s of many of those who are l o s i n g t h e i r jobs" (1989:71). From an average rate of 15.1 weeks i n 1981 the average durat ion of unemployment rose to 21.8 weeks i n 1983. The proport ion of the unemployed who spend 14 weeks or more looking for work rose from 32.2% i n 1981 to 47.0% i n 1983, dropping only s l i g h t l y to 41.5% by 1986 (Sharpe et a l . , 1988). S t a t i s t i c s Canada reported that by 1984, one i n ten of the unemployed had been out of work for more than a year compared with only 3.8% i n 1980 (1985:141). The Organizat ion For Economic Co-operation and Development (1988) notes that the problem of long-term unemployment has been pers i s t ent through-out the 1980*s and shows no immediate signs of d e c l i n i n g . The high l eve l s of unemployment and increased durat ions of unemployment s ince the ear ly 1970's have been accompanied by other labour market and demographic 14 changes. A major demographic change i s associated with the "baby boom" generation which has created s i g n i f i c a n t increases i n the p a r t i c i p a t i o n of females i n the labour force , the r i s e of youth p a r t i c i p a t i o n and the decrease of p a r t i c i p a t i o n of adult males (Economic Counci l of Canada, 1982; Organizat ion for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1988; Employment and Immigration, 1981; Royal Commission of Inquiry on Unemployment Insurance, 1986) . There has a lso been s i g n i f i c a n t labour market r e s t r u c t u r i n g . Since the 1970's there has been rap id growth i n the serv ice sector , moderate growth i n manufacturing and construct ion i n d u s t r i e s , and a dec l ine i n the employment of primary indus tr i e s (Employment and Immigration Canada, 1981; R i d d e l l , 1986b). The Organizat ion for Economic Co-operation and Development reported i n 1988 that nearly h a l f the jobs created i n Canada from 1984-1988 were managerial and admin i s t ra t ive . There has a l so been a greater growth i n part - t ime employment than i n f u l l - t i m e employment. Between 1975 and 1986, part- t ime jobs rose from 10.6% to 15.6% of t o t a l employment (Sharpe et a l . , 1988). One of the r e s u l t s of the recess ions , with 15 unemployment rates unmatched since the 1930's, was a corresponding growth i n the number of people r e c e i v i n g s o c i a l allowance as the unemployed exhausted Unemployment Insurance benef i ts and moved onto welfare caseloads (Muszynski, 1987; Sequin, 1987). David Ross reports that from 1980 to 1986 the number of monthly s o c i a l ass is tance b e n e f i c i a r i e s grew from 1.3 m i l l i o n to 1.9 m i l l i o n (1988:21). Despite improving economic condit ions s ince 1985 welfare caseloads have remained high (Torjman and B a t t l e , 1989, S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee, 1988, H a l i f a x , 1986; Adams, 1983). The Trans i t i ons report , commissioned by the Ontario government, noted high welfare caseloads i n that province despite a booming economy and a low rate of unemployment (Socia l Assistance Review Committee, 1988). The report suggested that those with low s k i l l s , l i m i t e d education, and sporadic work h i s t o r i e s were cont inuing to have d i f f i c u l t i e s re -enter ing the labour market despite a decreasing l e v e l of unemployment i n the province . Studies by Byrne (1988), Evans (1987) and the S o c i a l Ass is tance Review Committee (1988) a lso point out that s o c i a l ass is tance i n the 1990's serves a very d i f f e r e n t 16 populat ion than i t d id i n the 1960's when 80-90% of s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s were categorized as unemployable. The S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee (1988) study indicates that employable r e c i p i e n t s are the fas tes t growing elements on s o c i a l allowance caseloads having grown nearly 400% since 1969 with the s ing l e employable having grown nearly 800%. Muszynski (1987) notes that there i s a core of people, about one-t h i r d of the caseloads, that have long-term dependencies. Evans writes that i t i s " ind iv idua l s with extended periods of dependency on s o c i a l ass istance who are of the greatest concern, for both f i s c a l and humanitarian reasons" (1987:26). Burt P e r r i n (1987), i n a background study for the SARC Report, addressed the issue of increas ing numbers and d i v e r s i t y of welfare caseloads and noted several important f indings of relevance to pol icy-makers . He notes that about two-thirds of s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s have, at most, some high school education and could benef i t from l i t e r a c y t r a i n i n g , that only a small proport ion of the s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s i n Ontario who require t r a i n i n g ass istance are get t ing i t , and that there i s a need to broaden the approaches of a v a i l a b l e 17 programs to account for the d i f f e r e n t circumstances of d i f f e r e n t i n d i v i d u a l s on ass i s tance . In conclus ion, the recessions set o f f a s er i e s of events that have d r a s t i c a l l y changed the dynamics of unemployment and s o c i a l ass i s tance . People who had formerly been employed and s e l f - s u f f i c i e n t were squeezed out of the labour market and forced to go on welfare . Although the economic outlook i n 1990 i s b r i g h t e r i n some respects (for example, d e c l i n i n g rates of unemployment), evidence suggests that a s i g n i f i c a n t por t ion of the populat ion has become "trapped" i n l i f e s t y l e s of unemployment and dependency. Studies suggest that unemployment i n the 1980's tends to be " . . . concentra ted among a minori ty of the labour force who are unemployed over and over again" (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1988b:73). Although the s t r u c t u r a l context of work and unemployment has changed s i g n i f i c a n t l y , the s o c i a l context has changed l i t t l e . Work plays an important r o l e for i n d i v i d u a l s i n society from a v a r i e t y of economic and psycho-soc ia l perspect ives . Macarov writes that " . . .work has become a cen tra l element i n both the s tructure and the ideology of most modern s o c i e t i e s , and a t t i tudes 18 toward work are a major element i n shaping s o c i a l , economic, and f i s c a l p o l i c i e s " (1980:26). K e l v i n and J a r r e t t add that i n a "society whose socio-economic s tructure i s s t i l l predominantly defined i n terms of i t s d i v i s i o n of l a b o u r . . . t h e unemployed are defined by what they are not" (1985:43). The Meaning of Work While i t can be argued that the concept of work has o u t l i v e d i t s value (Macarov, 1980, 1984) and that work has to be re-def ined ( G i l , 1988; Percept ion. 1990, Canadian Counci l on S o c i a l Development, 1988) i t i s hard to deny that work s t i l l plays a pervasive r o l e i n our soc ie ty . Work provides people with a sense of r e a l i t y , binds us to the community, f u l f i l s an economic funct ion , and i s a major focus for personal evaluat ion (Sniderman, 1982; W.E. Upjohn I n s t i t u t e , 1973). Work has evolved to be more than a means for prov id ing food, c l o t h i n g and she l t er (Schore, 1987; Hayes and Nutman, 1981). I t has come to be viewed as a means of personal growth and s e l f -fu l f i lment "through which people gain a sense of usefulness , of s tature , of s e c u r i t y , of where they f i t in to t h e i r community and into soc ie ty at large" 19 (Robertson, 1986:81). Richard Benson notes that work i s a l so a means of s e l f - d e f i n i t i o n i n Western cu l ture and that ". . .we l i t e r a l l y become somebody through our work" (1972:28). Pope John Paul II writes that "a man's l i f e i s b u i l t everyday from work, from work i t der ives i t s s p e c i a l d ign i ty" (1981:6). Friedman and Havighurst (1954) note that work i s a means: 1) to maintain a standard of l i v i n g . 2) to f i l l and pass time. 3) of de f in ing a persons i d e n t i t y . 4) of as soc ia t ing with others . 5) of s e l f - express ion . 6) of serv ice to others . 7) and a source of s e l f - r e s p e c t . Fagin (1984) adds that work i s a l so a source of r e l a t i o n s h i p s outside the nuclear family , a source of ob l iga tory a c t i v i t y , and an opportunity to develop s k i l l s and c r e a t i v i t y . There i s a lso l i t t l e to suggest that the work e th i c i s dying i n our soc ie ty . A study i n 1975 found that work plays a p r i n c i p a l ro l e i n the attainment of important l i f e goals for Canadians (Sniderman, 1982: 25). A federa l Manpower and Immigration study (Burste in , 20 Tienhaara, Hewson & Warrander, 1975) found that Canadians are "c lear ly" committed to work and that work was named by more respondents than any other option as a way of achieving one's goals . A survey of 11,000 Canadians i n 1986 reported that 99% considered work important (Vancouver Sun, 1986). Peter B u t l e r ' s (1980) study of s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s provides evidence that people would rather work at even the lowest paying jobs than suf fer the humi l ia t ion and stigma of welfare. Other studies a l so show that s o c i a l allowance r e c i p i e n t s would rather work than be on welfare and that t h e i r values are the same as most people (Rode, 1987; Goodwin, 1972, 1981; S c h i l l e r , 1973: Sanger, 1979; Grann, Olendzki , & Goodrich, 1972). A study by P a t r i c i a Evans (1984) suggests a strong work e th ic among low-income s ing le mothers and that employment i s important for t h i s group. Work plays an important ro l e i n soc ie ty and has evolved to be more than jus t a means to earn a l i v i n g . Work i s often cen tra l to an i n d i v i d u a l 1 s percept ion of s e l f and i d e n t i t y . Work gives a person a sense of purpose, an opportunity of being useful and contr ibut ing to the community. Hayes and Nutman (1981) note that : Whatever h i s or her occupation the worker fee l s 21 needed. A person's contr ibut ion to producing goods or prov id ing services forges a l i n k between the i n d i v i d u a l and the soc iety of which he or she i s a p a r t . (p. 43) Unemployment can have a wide range of negative psycho-s o c i a l rami f i ca t ions for i n d i v i d u a l s . K i r s h (1983) wri tes that : Persons who are not compensated monetari ly for t h e i r d a i l y a c t i v i t i e s are seen as unproductive and therefore not e n t i t l e d to p a r t i c i p a t e i n the r ichness of d a i l y i n t e r c o u r s e . . . [ a s ] a soc ie ty we blame them for t h e i r unemployment, and they come to blame themselves. (1983:66-67) The Psycho-Social Ef fec t s of Unemployment Unemployment af fects i n d i v i d u a l s , fami l i e s and communities i n a myriad of ways, d i r e c t l y and i n d i r e c t l y . To be unemployed i s to face economic uncerta inty and poverty (Ross, 1988; Edmonton S o c i a l Planning C o u n c i l , 1985). A study by Borgen and Amundsen reported that unemployment was a traumatic experience and was character ized "by dramatic s h i f t s i n economic power, personal support and self-esteem" (1984:64). 22 The l i t e r a t u r e on the psycho-soc ia l e f fec t s of unemployment i s vast and diverse (Kelvin and J a r r e t t , 1985). This review w i l l focus only on some of the key s tudies and f ind ings . I t w i l l begin by examining the e f f ec t s of unemployment on the i n d i v i d u a l , then the e f fec t s on the family , and f i n a l l y the e f fec t s on the community. There are two issues that need to be h igh l ighted i n reviewing the l i t e r a t u r e on the e f fec ts of unemployment. The f i r s t i s the lack of contemporary s tudies . Much of the research dates back to the 1930*s and the Depression. As discussed, the dynamics of unemployment have changed d r a s t i c a l l y over the l a s t twenty years and there i s c l e a r l y a need for more research on unemployment i n the contemporary context. The second issue that needs to be addressed i s the e f fects of unemployment on women. Studies have tended to focus on the experiences of males. With the increased p a r t i c i p a t i o n of women i n the labour force , there i s a need for more research and information about the e f fec ts of unemployment on women. K i r s h (1983) argues that women seek employment for the same reasons as men: money, s o c i a l contact , independence, and pres t i ge . Women, however, tend to experience the labour 23 market on a d i f f e r e n t l e v e l than most men and are l a r g e l y confined to the secondary labour market (Ternowetsky, 1988; Gordon, 1972). B r i a r , Hoff and Seek wri te that i n a d d i t i o n to variances i n wages, s o c i a l i z a t i o n , and occupational opportuni t i e s , women's work l i f e must be understood as fundamentally d i f f e r e n t from men's because "women are unable to r e l i n q u i s h t h e i r family work r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s when they enter or r e t i r e from the labour market" (1987:196). A great deal of work has been devoted to studying the psycho-soc ia l e f fec ts i n the stages of unemployment. This review w i l l focus on Zawadski and Lazar fe ld (1935) and B r i a r (1978). In reviewing the l i t e r a t u r e on the psycho-soc ia l e f fec ts of unemployment i t i s important not to give the impression that there are pred ic tab le stages to unemployment and that everyone goes through a l l the stages i n the same order or to the same degree. The fo l lowing i s p r i m a r i l y to demonstrate that there i s u s u a l l y a d i f f i c u l t t r a n s i t i o n associated with long-term unemployment that often ends i n apathy and re s igna t ion . K e l v i n and J a r r e t t , summarizing the l i t e r a t u r e on stages of unemployment, write that "there i s a c l e a r consensus that i n the great majority of cases prolonged 24 unemployment eventual ly leads to res ignat ion and to apathy" (1985:26). Borrero (1980b) and B r i a r (1988) point out that the l i t e r a t u r e on the stages of unemployment i s s i m i l a r to the react ions of i n d i v i d u a l s to l o s s , g r i e f and separat ion. Zawadski and Lazar fe ld (1935) i d e n t i f i e d s i x stages of unemployment. Stage one begins with d i smissa l and creates fee l ings of d i s t r e s s and indignat ion followed by numbness and apathy (stage two). Stage two i s followed by a "calming down phase" (stage three) which i s character ized by some adaptation i n circumstances, and a b e l i e f that the s i t u a t i o n w i l l improve. Stage four sees the cautious optimism of stage three become increas ing ly weaker as the unemployed begin to perceive the f u t i l i t y of t h e i r e f for t s to a l t e r the s i t u a t i o n . Stage f i ve i s character ized by hopelessness which i s manifested i n attacks of fear and d i s t r e s s . Thoughts of s u i c i d e may develop during t h i s stage. The f i n a l stage (six) i s character ized by what Zawadski and L a z a r f e l d r e f e r to as "sober acquiesence or dumb apathy." A more contemporary analys i s of the process of unemployment has been provided by B r i a r (1978) i n her study of f i f ty - two unemployed men and women. B r i a r notes 25 t h a t a f t e r b e i n g n o t i f i e d o f t h e i r p e n d i n g l a y o f f , t h e unemployed r e a c t e d by what she c a l l s t h e "mantle o f o p t i m i s m . " In t h i s s tage most o f the unemployed s t a r t e d l o o k i n g f o r work immedia te ly and d i d no t v iew t h e i r l o s s o f work as a r e f l e c t i o n o f p e r s o n a l i n a d e q u a c i e s . B r i a r n o t e s , however, t h a t t h i s mant le o f opt imism seldom p e r s i s t s i n t h e face o f p e r s i s t e n t unemployment and t h a t few p e o p l e a r e a b l e t o cope w i t h i n v o l u n t a r y , l o n g - t e r m j o b l e s s n e s s . The second s tage i s when t h e unemployment becomes a way o f l i f e which i s o f t e n c h a r a c t e r i z e d by f i n a n c i a l s q u e e z i n g , m a r i t a l d i s c o r d , and the s h i f t i n g o f blame from the system t o s e l f and t h e onse t o f d e p r e s s i o n . R e s e a r c h i n d i c a t e s t h a t unemployment can a f f e c t i n d i v i d u a l s o f a l l ages . A s t u d y by B r i a r , F i e d l e r , Sheen and Kamps (1980b) r e p o r t e d t h a t common responses o f a l l ages t o unemployment a r e a n x i o u s n e s s , boredom, d e p r e s s i o n , i n t e r p e r s o n a l prob lems , w i t h d r a w a l from s o c i a l a c t i v i t i e s , and lowered s e l f - e s t e e m and s e l f p e r c e p t i o n . S t u d i e s have noted a c o r r e l a t i o n between unemployment and i s o l a t i o n and a l o s s o f f r i e n d s . B r i a r (1978), i n h e r s tudy o f the e f f e c t s o f l o n g - t e r m 26 unemployment on workers and t h e i r f a m i l i e s , found that unemployment increased the chances that people would spend more time alone. The study a lso noted that 50% of those studied made fr iendships with other persons who were out of work. S i m i l a r f indings were reported by Fagin (1984) who reported that the withdrawal and i s o l a t i o n resu l ted from fee l ings of worthlessness, loss of self-esteem and an i n a b i l i t y to communicate those f ee l ings . Unemployment can have an e f fec t on how people s t ructure t h e i r time. F r o h l i c h writes that " . . . f o r most of the men i n our c u l t u r e , work i s apparently the sole organiz ing p r i n c i p l e and the only means of s e l f -expression (1983:9). Jahoda, i n her study of the v i l l a g e of Mar ientha l , describes the a v a i l a b l e time r e s u l t i n g from unemployment as the "tragic g i f t " and reports that "separated from t h e i r work and without contact with the outer world, the workers have l o s t the mater ia l and moral p o s s i b i l i t i e s to use time" ( F r o h l i c h , 1983:9). S i m i l a r f indings have been noted by Komarovsky (1973) i n the U . S . and by the Newfoundland Royal Commission on Employment and Unemployment (1986) i n Canada. Studies ind icate that unemployment can be a threat 27 to hea l th . A study i n Toronto i d e n t i f i e d unemployment as a major threat to health i n the c i t y (Soc ia l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto, 1982, 1986). Studies report that unemployed people tend to smoke more c i g a r e t t e s , dr ink more caf fe ine and a l c o h o l , and exercise l e ss than before l o s ing t h e i r job (Kirsh , 1983). Stress can r e s u l t from unemployment and has been described as the s ing l e greatest health threat fac ing the unemployed and t h e i r fami l i e s (Labonte, 1984:22). Stress has been l i n k e d to such diseases as s trokes , u l c e r s , b r o n c h i t i s , obs truct ive lung disease, heightened r i s k of heart disease and several in fec t ious i l l n e s s e s (Labonte, 1984:22). Joblessness may also a f fec t l i f e expectancy. A study by Donig suggests that unemployment and i t s r e l a t e d anxiety may reduce l i f e expectancy be f i ve years ( B r i a r , 1978). Kas l and Cobb (1970) have provided one of the most thorough l o n g i t u d i n a l studies on the e f fec t s of an t i c ipa ted unemployment on the blood pressure of 150 married men who l o s t t h e i r jobs due to a permanent p lant shutdown. The c o n t r o l l e d study found that blood pressure was higher during a n t i c i p a t i o n of job loss and unemployment. The study also found that men whose blood 28 pressure remained higher longer had more severe unemployment, were lower i n ego r e s i l i e n c e , reported l o n g e r - l a s t i n g subject ive s t ress , and showed l i t t l e improvement i n reported we l l -be ing . Shamugan's study a lso found a r e l a t i o n s h i p between unemployment and anxiety . Unemployed men were found to be more anxious than employed men and the anxiety was greatest between the seventh and twelf th month of unemployment ( B r i a r , 1980b). Studies by Cobb, 1974; Gore and Cobb, 1975; Wedderburn, 1964; and Hersey, 1972 have a lso reported that the a n t i c i p a t i o n of job loss alone can create considerable p h y s i o l o g i c a l and psycholog ica l s tress (Kelv in et a l . , 1985). Depression i s one of the most common experiences of the unemployed. Schl ionsky, Preu and Rose (1937) found that 90% of the 2 00 men they studied reacted to unemployment with disturbances of mood having the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of a mi ld or moderate depression. The research of Harvey Brenner (1973) , studying the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the economic s i t u a t i o n and mental i l l n e s s , suggests that periods of economic dec l ine contr ibute to mental health problems. Liem and Rayman (1982) found that being without work was s trongly 29 associated with increased l eve l s of p s y c h i a t r i c symptoms i n the study group compared to a contro l group. Krahn, Lowe and Tanner (1984), studying the unemployed i n Edmonton, A l b e r t a , found s i g n i f i c a n t l y higher l e v e l s of depression and fee l ings of powerlessness among the unemployed. Peter Warr's study a lso supports the argument that mental i l l heal th can r e s u l t from unemployment (Bal loch, Hume, Jones, & Westland, 1985). Fag in ' s (1984) study reported that depression can lead to occas ional v i o l e n t outbursts , b i t t e r n e s s , l e thargy , re s ignat ion and withdrawal. There i s evidence to suggest that unemployment may be r e l a t e d to su ic ide and parasu ic ide . Zawadski and L a z a r f i e l d (1935), i n a study of the biographies of 57 unemployed i n d i v i d u a l s , found that 27 reported s u i c i d a l thoughts (6 reported thoughts of murdering family members) . A study i n the U .K. from 1971 to 1981 r e f l e c t s su i c ide rates twice the nat ional average for unemployed men (Bal loch et a l . , 1985:44). P i a t t ' s study (Harr i s , 1984) a l so suggests that the rates of attempted su i c ide have a tendency to increase the longer the durat ion of unemployment. Brenner's study (1973) ind icated that su i c ide i s often a response of higher socio-economic 30 groups while alcohol ism tends to be the working c lass response. Unemployment not only a f fects the unemployed person, but the family as w e l l . Frank Furstenburg, p u l l i n g together 46 s tudies , concluded that the economic uncerta inty of unemployment i s one of the p r i n c i p a l reasons for the d e t e r i o r a t i o n of family r e l a t i o n s (W.E. Upjohn, 1973). S i m i l a r f indings have been reported by D a i l (1988), Ternowetsky (1988), Hakim (1982), Mackay (1983) and H a r r i s (1984). Bakke (1940), studying the behaviour of twenty-f ive unemployed f a m i l i e s , noted f ive stages for the unemployed and t h e i r f a m i l i e s . Stage one i s c a l l e d "momentum s t a b i l i t y " and i n t h i s phase there are few changes as finances and savings are stretched to meet needs. The unemployed person spends most of the time looking for work and tends to spend more time with t h e i r fami ly . The second stage i s "unstable equi l ibr ium" and i n t h i s phase family dynamics are a l t ered as the spouse begins to look for work and r e l a t i o n s h i p s and r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s begin to s h i f t w i th in the family . Management of finances can a lso become problematic i n t h i s stage. Stage three ("disorganization") sees the problems of stage two 31 i n t e n s i f y and can be accompanied by fee l ings of f a i l u r e , f i n a n c i a l c r i s e s , preoccupation with family problems, p h y s i c a l d e t e r i o r a t i o n , and a loss of status for the unemployed person with in the family . For Bakke, the d i sorgan iza t ion phase i s a c r i t i c a l point i n the process . I t i s i n t h i s phase that marriages are the most suscept ib le to breakup. The fourth stage ("experimental adjustment") i s the beginning of an adjustment to the s tate of unemployment as new patterns of funct ioning begin to replace o ld ones. The f i n a l stage ("permanent adjustment") sees the family adapt to the condi t ion of unemployment. M i r r a Komorovsky (1940) studied the e f fec t s of unemployment on the status of the male i n 59 f a m i l i e s . She noted a lowered s tatus , pres t ige , and author i ty for the husband which was often accompanied by family r e s t r u c t u r i n g i n terms of power and author i ty . The changes i n status for the male i n t e n s i f i e d the lowering of h i s self-esteem as he was blamed for h i s unemployment and compared to others who were employed. S i m i l a r f indings have been reported by Borrero (1980b) Hakim (1982) and The Report of the Newfoundland Royal Commission on Employment and Unemployment (1986). 32 Liem et a l . (1982) reported that spouses and c h i l d r e n can also be adversely affected by unemployment. Wives were exposed to a l t ered family dynamics inc lud ing changes i n the mood and behaviour of family members, p a r t i c u l a r l y the husband (1982:1119). The study a lso reported that c h i l d r e n of the unemployed often exh ib i t the s tress of unemployment i n behaviours such as moodiness, problems at school and a l t ered r e l a t i o n s h i p s with f r i e n d s . Another study ( D a i l , 1988) found that c h i l d r e n affected by the job loss of parents often e x h i b i t symptoms of depression and i s o l a t i o n s i m i l a r to t h e i r parents . Fagin (1984) reported that c h i l d r e n of the unemployed can exh ib i t symptoms such as disturbances i n feeding hab i t s , minor g a s t r o - i n t e s t i n a l complaints, s leep d i sorders , moodiness, and problems i n school . High l e v e l s of unemployment can also have an e f fec t on communities. Studies ind icate that fami l i e s i n areas character ized by high l eve l s of unemployment are more l i k e l y to be v ic t ims of r i s i n g crime ra tes , drug abuse, and family v io lence ( D a i l , 1988). Evidence a lso suggests that unemployment increases r e c i d i v i s t crime, r e c o n v i c t i o n , the rate of imprisonment, and the s i ze of the pr i son populat ion (Hakim, 1982). A study by H a r r i o t 33 Wollman suggests that unemployment may contr ibute to racism and the buildup of s o c i a l tensions (Soc ia l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto, 1986). The research on the psycho-soc ia l e f fec t s of unemployment re inforces the notion that work i s i n t e g r a l to our perception of s e l f . To be unemployed i n our work-or ientated soc iety i s to face economic uncerta inty and hardship which can p o t e n t i a l l y create a wide range of negative economic and psycho-soc ia l e f fec ts on the hea l th , q u a l i t y of l i f e , and wel l -be ing of i n d i v i d u a l s , f ami l i e s and communities. Studies ind ica te that unemployment can a f fec t i n d i v i d u a l s i n the form of economic advers i ty , anxiety, h o s t i l i t y , shame, mental i l l n e s s , s t r e s s - r e l a t e d health d i sorders , h u m i l i a t i o n , depression, loss of se l f -worth , reduced l i f e expectancy, i s o l a t i o n , fee l ings of i n f e r i o r i t y and powerlessness, d i s t r u s t of others, loss of hope and loss of s e l f -confidence. Unemployment has a lso been l i n k e d to family s tress and d i s s o l u t i o n , racism, and crime. S o c i a l ass istance has been the i n s t i t u t i o n a l response to the hardships of unemployment s ince the 1940's and i s s t i l l based on a model re levant to that p e r i o d . Although the labour market and the dynamics of 34 unemployment have changed s i g n i f i c a n t l y s ince the 1970's, s o c i a l ass is tance systems, and the t h e o r e t i c a l underpinnings of the system, have been slow to respond. The r e s u l t i s that the unemployed i n d i v i d u a l 1 s problems and low fee l ings of se l f -worth are often exacerbated by the i n t e r a c t i o n with the s o c i a l ass istance system. The combined e f fec t i s often that the system works against the e f f o r t s of i n d i v i d u a l s who want to become independent and s e l f - s u f f i c i e n t . The Development of S o c i a l Assistance i n Canada In order for there to be re-examination and r e -assessment, there a lso needs to be an understanding of the h i s t o r i c a l context of the present approach to s o c i a l ass is tance i n Canada. John McReady argues that "soc ia l p o l i c y does not ex i s t i n a s o c i a l , p o l i t i c a l or economic vacuum.. . the s o c i a l p o l i c y act ions of a country . . .must be viewed as having been developed wi th in a s p e c i f i c context" (1981:12). The modern approach to s o c i a l ass is tance i n Canada can be traced to The El izabethan Poor Laws. The Poor Laws evolved out of the changing economic and s o c i a l environment i n England at the time. With the l a t e r 35 development of the i n d u s t r i a l r e v o l u t i o n , the theories of V o l t a i r e , Hume, Locke and Smith combined with soc io -economic pressures to fos ter a value system and s o c i e t a l i n f r a s t r u c t u r e based on l a i s s e z - f a i r e , s u r v i v a l of the f i t t e s t , a d i s t i n c t i o n between "deserving" and "undeserving" poor and the concept of l e ss e l i g i b i l i t y (Borrero & Rivera , 1980c; Macarov, 1980; I r v i n g , 1987). A l l a n I r v i n g (1987) summarizes the p r i n c i p l e s embodied i n the Poor Laws and the 1824 amendments as fo l lows: 1) the p r i n c i p l e of "less e l i g i b i l i t y " - t h a t the condi t ion of the able-bodied pauper be less favourable than the lowest c lass of independent labourer . 2) the means tes t and the use of workhouses to correc t s o c i a l dependency. 3) a des ire to embrace f u l l y the free market as the most appropriate way to approach need and the best way to r e d i s t r i b u t e income. Canada has, to some degree, i n h e r i t e d an approach to s o c i a l welfare which views i t as a s ign of personal f a i l u r e and i n f e r i o r i t y (Muszynski, 1987) . Although the poor laws were only l e g i s l a t e d i n the Maritime provinces , the underly ing values are s t i l l perpetuated through our moral standards, s o c i a l i z a t i o n processes, and 36 i n s t i t u t i o n s . They have a lso formed the p h i l o s o p h i c a l foundations for the present approach to s o c i a l ass is tance ( Irv ing , 1987). The Nat ional Counci l of Welfare writes that a s i g n i f i c a n t problem with t h i s legacy i s "the unquestioned assumption of negative a t t i tudes towards people who, for whatever reason, are unable to support themselves" (1987:10). P r i o r to 1900, there was l i m i t e d governmental involvement i n income secur i ty concerns i n Canada. S o c i a l ass is tance was a l o c a l concern and was provided by c h a r i t i e s , r e l i g i o u s organizat ions and municipal governments. The ra t iona l e behind t h i s approach was that few people should require ass is tance , that welfare fostered indolence and dependency and that the poor and des t i tu te were lazy and morally i n f e r i o r . When ass is tance was provided i t was general ly r e s t r i c t e d to the young, e l d e r l y , s i c k and women with dependent c h i l d r e n and only a f t er a l l resources had been exhausted (Canadian Intergovernmental Conference S e c r e t a r i a t , 1980). Major economic and s o c i a l changes began i n the middle and l a t e 1800" s as Canada evolved from an a g r i c u l t u r a l soc iety to a modern i n d u s t r i a l nat ion . With 37 i n d u s t r i a l i z a t i o n came new income secur i ty concerns. The turn of the century witnessed an extended per iod of prosper i ty i n Canada as the pace of i n d u s t r i a l i z a t i o n and urbanizat ion quickened. From 1900-1910 the urban populat ion increased by 62% and manufacturing replaced a g r i c u l t u r e as the most important sector of the economy (Canadian Intergovernmental Conference S e c r e t a r i a t , 1980). Along with i n d u s t r i a l i z a t i o n and a growing populat ion was s o c i a l ferment. The 1930's was a major turning point i n the evo lut ion of the Canadian welfare s ta te . Despite the needs created by an i n d u s t r i a l i z e d economy, s o c i a l welfare l e g i s l a t i o n was minimal before the 1930's. P r i o r to the depression, there was no unemployment insurance and r e l i e f was s t i l l a l o c a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y . This per iod saw the f i r s t subs tant ia l involvement of the federal government i n the f i e l d of s o c i a l ass i s tance . Almost one-quarter of the labour force was out of work, and an estimated 15% of the populat ion was on some sort of municipal ass istance (National Counci l of Welfare, 1987). Unemployment, combined with drought on the p r a i r i e s , created an unstable s o c i a l and economic s i t u a t i o n . Despite a reluctance for state involvement, the 38 Conservative Government of R . B . Bennett had no choice but to get involved and the ear ly 1930's saw a ser ies of ad-hoc federa l grants . The Unemployment R e l i e f Act of 1930 s tated that "unemployment, which i s p r i m a r i l y a p r o v i n c i a l and municipal r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , has become so general throughout Canada as to cons t i tu te a matter of na t iona l concern" (Social Assistance Review Committee, 1987:35). A f t e r the i n i t i a l agreement i n 1930, agreements were signed on a year ly bas is between federa l and p r o v i n c i a l governments with the expectation that when the unemployment c r i s i s was over r e l i e f would again revert to a municipal concern. The ad-hoc measures of the federal government proved inadequate. In 1935, confronted by an increas ing ly h o s t i l e populace, the government of R . B . Bennett introduced The Employment and S o c i a l Insurance Act prov id ing for a nationwide compulsory insurance. Although the l e g i s l a t i o n was l a t e r ru led to be u l t r a -v i r e s i t s i g n a l l e d a new era i n Canadian s o c i a l welfare development. The 1930's had put a s t r a i n on Canadian soc ie ty but i t a l so forced the country to re-examine the i n s t a b i l i t y of c a p i t a l i s m , the ro l e of the s tate , and the 39 appropriateness of the d i v i s i o n of f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l powers. Under Mackenzie King's L i b e r a l government the Royal Commission on Dominion-Provincial Relat ions was e s tab l i shed . The Commission had a great inf luence on the s o c i a l and economic p o l i c i e s pursued by government and l ed to an agreement between the federal and p r o v i n c i a l governments which allowed the Federal government to enact The Unemployment Insurance Act of 1940. Despite the hardships of the depression and the involvement of the federal government i n r e l i e f for the f i r s t t ime, r e l i e f expenditures were d r a s t i c a l l y reduced a f t e r the c r i s i s subsided and there was no permanent system of r e l i e f funding i n p lace . From 25.7% of the t o t a l of government expenditures i n 1931, s o c i a l welfare expenditures were cut to 5.7% by 1941 (Moscovitch & Drover, 1987) . By 1941, the shared-cost r e l i e f measures that had been i n i t i a t e d i n the ear ly 1930's had a lso been terminated. The years up to 1940 have been c a l l e d the per iod of "reluctant welfarism" i n Canadian s o c i a l welfare h i s t o r y (Moscovitch et a l . , 1987). As A . E . Grauer (Canadian Intergovernmental Conference S e c r e t a r i a t , 1980) noted i n 1939: . . . t h e Great Depression has been the ch i e f stimulus 40 to labour l e g i s l a t i o n and s o c i a l insurance. The note has not been so much the i d e a l of s o c i a l j u s t i c e as p o l i t i c a l and economic f i n a n c i a l expediency. (p. 16) World War II was the next s i g n i f i c a n t per iod i n the development of the Canadian welfare s ta te . During the war there was a growing acceptance of the need for the s tate to take an ever- increas ing ro l e i n the economic and s o c i a l l i f e of the country. Dennis Guest (1987) argues that the increased wi l l ingness of the s tate to get involved arose from a number of sources. P r i m a r i l y , however, there was a need for the government to b u i l d and maintain the morale of forces , a longing on the part of c i t i z e n s for a more secure future , and the des ire to avoid the mass unemployment and s o c i a l upheaval created a f t e r World War I . The des ire for a bet ter l i f e and a more secure future l ed to the growth of the C . C . F . party and the growth of the labour movement i n Canada. P a r t l y i n response to these pressures, Mackenzie King commissioned The Report on S o c i a l Secur i ty for Canada (Marsh Report) . Released i n 1943, the report has been c a l l e d Canada's f i r s t ant i -poverty proposal and recommended a comprehensive program of s o c i a l insurance and s o c i a l expenditure. The report had s ix main i n i t i a t i v e s : a na t iona l employment program, supplementary occupational and t r a i n i n g schemes, a comprehensive system of s o c i a l insurance pro tec t ion , medical care , c h i l d r e n ' s allowances and p u b l i c ass i s tance . Marsh proposed a "federa l ly f inanced and administered program of unemployment ass is tance for those who were for some reason not working i n employment covered by unemployment insurance" (Guest, 1987:213). In 1943, the Unemployment Insurance Act covered only about 7 0% of the labour force and d i d not cover a l l unemployed persons such as those with short attachments to the labour force , those absent from work due to i l l n e s s , and the seasonally unemployed. Despite i t s innovative and comprehensive approach, The Marsh Report was attacked by a federal government concerned about the repor t ' s c r i t i c i s m s of the f ree -enterpr i se system and i t s emphasis on s o c i a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y (Guest, 1987). The report d i d , however, have a strong inf luence i n the development of Canada's income s e c u r i t y system over the next t h i r t y years . In 1945, at a p r o v i n c i a l - f e d e r a l conference, the federa l government made a proposal to the provinces "for e s t a b l i s h i n g the general condit ions and framework for high employment and income p o l i c i e s , and for support of nat iona l minimum standards of s o c i a l services" (Canadian Intergovernmental Conference S e c r e t a r i a t , 1980:17). Included i n these proposals was a federal o f f er to assume r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for a l l "unemployed employable" who were not e l i g i b l e or no longer e l i g i b l e for unemployment insurance benef i t s . The provinces , however, refused to cede personal and corporate taxes to the federa l government. Although the conference ended i n disagreement, the federal government began implementing t h e i r proposals during the 1950's on a piecemeal b a s i s . Despite large increases i n p u b l i c expenditure during World War I I , s tate involvement wound down a f t er the war. Unl ike the f i r s t World War, the post World War II economy was character ized by an unprecedented per iod of prosper i ty and low l eve l s of unemployment. The primary focus of governments at a l l l eve l s a f t er the war was on strengthening pr iva te enterprise and maintaining employment and purchasing power. Except for some s p e c i f i c circumstances s o c i a l s ecur i ty was l a r g e l y i r r e l e v a n t (Moscovitch et a l . , 1987; Guest, 1987). Unemployment and s o c i a l welfare d i d not again become 43 a major issue u n t i l the mid-1950's when unemployment jumped from 3% to 5% between 1953 and 1954 (Hepworth, Draper, Mackinnon, Rogers and Splane, 1987) . S i m i l a r to the 1930's, high l eve l s of unemployment put pressure on the resources of pr iva te welfare organizat ions , m u n i c i p a l i t i e s and provinces . Despite the lack of f edera l p a r t i c i p a t i o n , many provinces had continued to develop welfare programs and were prov id ing ass is tance to persons not covered under cos t - shar ing . The economic downturn of 1954 i n t e n s i f i e d the pressure from provinces on the federa l government to enact a supplementary s o c i a l ass is tance program for the temporari ly unemployed. Pressure from the provinces culminated i n 1956 with the passage of The Unemployment Assistance A c t . This Act was the f i r s t modern l e g i s l a t e d r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for r e l i e f i n Canada and provided federal reimbursement of 50% of the amount spent by a province and i t s m u n i c i p a l i t i e s on f i n a n c i a l ass istance to needy unemployed persons. The  Unemployment Assistance Act was a s i g n i f i c a n t piece of l e g i s l a t i o n as i t i n i t i a t e d a trend towards p r o v i n c i a l assumption of j u r i s d i c t i o n over the adminis trat ion and f inancing of programs for the temporari ly unemployed and the unemployable. Important features of the l e g i s l a t i o n 44 were that there was no expenditure c e i l i n g on l eve l s of a i d and a means t e s t was not a condi t ion of cos t - shar ing . By 1959, a l l provinces had signed agreements with the federa l government. The Unemployment Assistance Act set the stage for the Canada Assistance Plan (CAP) i n 1966. In the l a t e 1950's and ear ly 1960's prosper i ty returned to Canada and was accompanied by prosper i ty and optimism about the e l iminat ion of poverty and unemployment. In 1963, the L i b e r a l s under Pearson were e lected to head a reform-or ientated minori ty government and were under pressure to make further s o c i a l reforms. As w e l l , there was increas ing d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n with the piece-meal and uncoordinated development of s o c i a l welfare programs that had character ized s o c i a l p o l i c y i n Canada s ince the breakdown of the 1945 f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l conference. Ron Draper (Hepworth et a l . , 1987) argues that CAP was based on a b e l i e f that bureaucrats could create a humane welfare system, governments could do something about poverty, governments should have f l e x i b i l i t y i n dea l ing with s o c i a l problems and that s o c i a l welfare programs should be humane and e f f i c i e n t at the same time. Draper adds that there was also the b e l i e f i n the o v e r r i d i n g 45 value of the work e th ic and that unemployment was an i n d i v i d u a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y . This was one of the main reasons for inc lud ing work a c t i v i t y projec t s as part of CAP (Hepworth et a l . , 1987). CAP consol idated the four e x i s t i n g cost-shared c a t e g o r i c a l programs (the 1952 Old Age Assistance Ac t , the 1952 B l i n d Persons Allowance Ac t , the 1954 Disabled  Persons Allowance Act , and the 1956 Unemployment  Ass is tance Act) into one p r o v i n c i a l l y managed system with e l i g i b i l i t y determined on the bas is of need. I t extended federa l author i ty i n an area of p r o v i n c i a l j u r i s d i c t i o n , set out parameters which the provinces had to fol low i n order to be e l i g i b l e for federal funds, "assistance" and "person i n need "were defined i n broad terms and no l i m i t s on l e v e l s of income were imposed (Soc ia l Ass is tance Review Committee, 1987). The per iod 1966-1975 has been described as the "golden age of income secur i ty i n Canada" ( F o r t i n , 1985). With the in troduct ion of Medicare i n 1968, the major elements of the Marsh Report had been put i n p lace . Moscovitch et a l . s tate that the subs tant ia l number of reforms i n s t i t u t e d between 1963-1968 developed Canada in to a "welfare state i n the sense that s o c i a l welfare 46 programmes, or s o c i a l consumption, enter the d a i l y l i v e s of a majori ty of the population" (1987:36). By the mid-19 70' s, s o c i a l welfare expenditures had grown to more than 50% of t o t a l s tate expenditures (Moscovitch et a l . , 1987). Economic condit ions have changed considerably s ince 1975 and both federal and p r o v i n c i a l governments have responded with p o l i c i e s character ized by retrenchment and r e s t r a i n t . Since the ear ly 1970's governments have been under pressure to cut taxes and d e f i c i t s and to reduce s o c i a l expenditures. A l l a n I rv ing (1987) character izes 1967-1987 as a per iod of neo-conservatism and r e s t r a i n t accompanied by intense c r i t i c i s m of s o c i a l ass is tance and reductions i n s o c i a l expenditures. Moscovitch and Drover (1987) write that: During downturns i n the economy, the p r i v a t e sector pressures government for ass i s tance . The s ta te , under t h i s pressure, r e d i r e c t s expenditures to a i d c a p i t a l or reduces taxat ion . Both act ions have the e f f ec t of squeezing s o c i a l expenditures and increas ing d e f i c i t f inanc ing . T y p i c a l l y , there i s a t r a d e - o f f between transfers to persons and a i d to business and industry , (p.37) 47 In summary, the approach t o s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e and i n d e e d a l l s o c i a l w e l f a r e i s s u e s i n Canada has t ended t o d e v e l o p i n an a d - h o c , p i ecemea l and s p o r a d i c p a t t e r n i n re sponse t o c r i s e s r a t h e r than from a model o f p l a n n e d deve lopment . H i s t o r i c a l l y , unemployment has been v iewed as an i n d i v i d u a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y and t h e r e has been a r e l u c t a n c e on the p a r t o f the f e d e r a l government t o become i n v o l v e d i n s o c i a l w e l f a r e i s s u e s . The income a s s i s t a n c e system t h a t deve loped out o f t h e d e p r e s s i o n was d e s i g n e d as a s h o r t - t e r m measure t o g i v e p e o p l e the n e c e s s a r y t ime t o r e - e n t e r the l a b o u r f o r c e . Based on a p h i l o s o p h i c a l approach w i t h r o o t s i n the E n g l i s h Poor Laws, t h e o b j e c t i v e o f s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e was p r i m a r i l y t o p r o v i d e a s u b s i s t e n c e l e v e l income and t o d i s c o u r a g e dependency. D e s p i t e the r e s i d u a l n a t u r e o f the program and i t s assumpt ions about p o v e r t y and the unemployed, i t can be argued t h a t the s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e model d e v e l o p e d i n Canada p r o v i d e d a modicum o f s u p p o r t from the 1940's t o the 1960 ' s , t imes o f economic p r o s p e r i t y and low l e v e l s o f unemployment. S i n c e the 1970's , however, the dynamics and d imens ions o f unemployment and s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e have changed d r a m a t i c a l l y . I n c r e a s i n g l y , t h e r e i s a 48 recogni t ion that the present s o c i a l ass is tance system i s inadequate, i n e f f i c i e n t and i n e f f e c t i v e . The present approach, i n s t i t u t i o n a l l y and p h i l o s o p h i c a l l y , has a v a r i e t y of negative, and counter-product ive , e f fec t s on i n d i v i d u a l s . The E f f e c t s of S o c i a l Assistance S o c i a l ass istance was developed as a program of l a s t re sor t and t h i s i s r e f l e c t ed i n the present s o c i a l ass is tance system which has been character ized as complex, inadequate, inaccess ib le , and inequi table (National Counci l of Welfare, 1987). Davidson et a l . (1987) argue that the object ive of s o c i a l ass is tance systems i s to make i t as d i f f i c u l t as poss ib le to obtain ass is tance and to survive on welfare. The Report of the Manitoba Task Force on S o c i a l Ass is tance s i m i l a r l y notes that the underlying philosophy of s o c i a l ass is tance i s "that the rece ip t of ass istance should be rendered as unpleasant as poss ib le i n order to ensure that an a p p l i c a t i o n for ass istance i s t r u l y a l a s t re sor t a l t ernat ive" (1983:22). David Ross (1978) argues that the s o c i a l ass istance system i n Canada i s based on the myth of "own faul t" poverty and that t h i s approach 49 dic ta te s a system which makes applying for welfare demeaning and d i f f i c u l t . Graham Riches (1985) i d e n t i f i e s what he re fers to as the "iron law of welfare" which d i c t a t e s that those who need the most support rece ive the l e a s t . Leon Muszynski writes that welfare i s considered c h a r i t y and that the system "is e x p l i c i t l y or i m p l i c i t l y designed and administered to re in force the idea that to be a welfare r e c i p i e n t i s to be an i n f e r i o r c las s of c i t i z e n " (1987:2). One of the common c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of s o c i a l ass is tance systems across Canada i s the inadequacy of bene f i t s . A study by The National Counci l of Welfare (1987) reported that rates of ass istance across Canada f e l l we l l below any d e f i n i t i o n of the poverty l i n e . A study i n Manitoba (1983) reported that s o c i a l ass is tance rates i n that province were 50-60% of the S t a t i s t i c s Canada low income c u t - o f f . The S o c i a l Planning and Research Counci l of B r i t i s h Columbia (1989) reported that gaps i n meeting bas ic subsistence costs i n B r i t i s h Columbia range from 54% for a s ing le male to 9% for a s ing le mother with a f ive year o ld son l i v i n g i n a one-bedroom apartment. The gaps are increased to 83% and 29% when other d a i l y l i v i n g costs l i k e recrea t ion , l e i s u r e , 50 education, and the replacement of minor household furn i sh ings , are included. S i m i l a r observations were made i n studies by Ontario (Socia l Ass is tance Review Committee, 1988), Saskatchewan (Adams, 1983), Prince Edward Is land (1989), Ha l i fax (1988), the Assoc ia t ion of M u n i c i p a l i t i e s of Ontario (1987), the S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto and the Ontario S o c i a l Development Counci l (1983), and the Royal Commission on the Economic Union and Development Prospects for Canada (1985) . S o c i a l ass istance rates are intended to cover only "basic needs" which mean food, she l t er , u t i l i t i e s and c l o t h i n g (National Counci l of Welfare, 1987) . The e f fec t s of extremely low rates of ass is tance can be devastat ing for welfare r e c i p i e n t s from a v a r i e t y of perspect ives . Manitoba's report points out that poverty-l e v e l incomes often force s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s to "do without what other members of the community take for granted" (1983:26). Other common e f fec t s of low rates of ass istance are that c h i l d r e n may not be able to p a r t i c i p a t e i n l e i s u r e and sports a c t i v i t i e s , hol idays may go uncelebrated, people often become i s o l a t e d and c u t - o f f (e .g . they may not be able to a f ford 51 t ranspor ta t ion and other re la ted costs of being s o c i a l l y act ive) , and goods may have to be discarded because there i s not enough funds to have them repa ired . Studies a lso suggest that poverty and depr ivat ion can s e r i o u s l y damage the growth and development of c h i l d r e n and can contr ibute to poor heal th i n both c h i l d r e n and adults (The Nat ional Counci l of Welfare, 1987). The Nat ional Counci l of Welfare (1987) report states that: . . . n o wr i t ten account can even come c lose to por tray ing the damage to phys i ca l heal th and the scars to psychologica l wel l -be ing that can come from l i v i n g at standards below those deemed absolute ly minimal for bas ic subsistence, (p. 82) S o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s often view t h e i r world as one of hopelessness and despair and " t y p i c a l l y f ee l trapped i n a system which re inforces t h e i r dependence and which s t i f l e s any i n i t i a t i v e to break out of a l i f e of impoverishment" (The National Counci l of Welfare, 1987:84). The tendency of s o c i a l ass istance systems to fos ter and entrench dependency was a consis tent theme i n many of the reports undertaken i n the 1980's. This i s an important observation as one of the primary object ives of s o c i a l ass istance s ince i t s incept ion , and r e i t e r a t e d i n the Canada Assistance Plan, i s that the program should not encourage dependency on welfare (The Canada Assistance Plan Act, 1966; Hepworth et a l . , 1987; Report for the Inter p r o v i n c i a l Conference of Ministers Responsible for Social Services, 1980). Despite the stated goals, however, there i s an emerging awareness that, i n practice, s o c i a l assistance systems serve to foste r dependence rather than independence. Saskatchewan reported that the s o c i a l assistance system i n that province entrenches welfare dependency i n as l i t t l e as 4-6 months (Adams, 1983). Dependency on the s o c i a l assistance system i s encouraged by a number of disincentives. An example i s the tax-back of the earnings of those on s o c i a l assistance. In many cases, once related employment costs are considered, many individuals are better o f f not working. The Manitoba (1983) study noted occasions where i t was possible that c l i e n t s could lose more than a d o l l a r f o r any d o l l a r earned. In his study of incentives and disincentives i n Ontario, Ernie Lightman (1987) writes that: . . .even the most cursory glance must evoke surprise, not that so many people are on s o c i a l assistance i n 53 Ontar io , but rather that so few fol low t h i s c o u r s e . . . B u i l t into Ontar io ' s sys tem. . .are subs tant ia l b a r r i e r s which v i r t u a l l y ensure that many who do paid w o r k - f u l l or part - t ime act counter to t h e i r own best f i n a n c i a l i n t e r e s t s . (p. 3) S o c i a l ass istance systems work i n other ways to erect b a r r i e r s and d i s incent ives for r e c i p i e n t s . An example i s the s t i p u l a t i o n i n many provinces that appl icants exhaust a l l t h e i r resources before becoming e l i g i b l e for ass i s tance . Manitoba's (1983) study points out that t h i s p r a c t i c e often r e s u l t s i n a longer l a s t i n g dependency as people are forced to l i q u i d a t e the assets that might allow them, at some po in t , to once again be s e l f - suppor t ing (e .g. veh ic le s for t ransporta t ion and work t o o l s ) . Another example of a d i s i n c e n t i v e i s that many s o c i a l ass istance systems do not cover employment-r e l a t e d costs for c l i e n t s who are a c t i v e l y seeking jobs or beginning jobs (Hal i fax , 1988). As w e l l , r e c i p i e n t s who do take short-term jobs often face d i f f i c u l t i e s and in terrupt ions i n ass istance upon r e - a p p l i c a t i o n which further discourages e f f o r t s for s e l f - s u f f i c i e n c y . Another problem for s o c i a l ass istance systems across Canada i s the complexity of ru les (National Counci l of 54 Welfare, 1987; S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee, 1988; Adams, 1983; H a l i f a x , 1988). One of the e f fec ts of the large and confusing adminis trat ive s tructures that have evolved to administer welfare i s the d i s c r e t i o n a r y powers of s o c i a l ass istance workers. Although the f l e x i b i l i t y of d i s c r e t i o n a r y powers can be advantageous i n c e r t a i n s i t u a t i o n s i t can also be inequi table and "vio late bas ic i n d i v i d u a l r i g h t s and p r i n c i p l e s of fa irness" (Soc ia l Ass is tance Review Committee, 1988:19). D i s c r e t i o n can a lso be demeaning for rec ip i en t s as they may be forced to "plead t h e i r cases" before unsympathetic workers (Hal i fax , 1988, S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee, 1988) . The s tructures that have evolved to administer s o c i a l ass is tance programs can have other negative e f fec t s on r e c i p i e n t s . Adams describes the process i n Saskatchewan as "phi losophica l ly aimless , incons i s tent , r e l a t i v e l y i n s e n s i t i v e to c l i e n t s ' r e a l needs and problems (other than f i n a n c i a l ) , suf focat ing to workers, and dehumanizing to the c l i e n t s " (1983:9). A problem r e s u l t i n g from the present approach and s tructure i s a lack of contact between r e c i p i e n t s and s o c i a l ass is tance workers. The contact that does occur i s often 55 a d v e r s a r i a l , negative, unsat i s fac tory , degrading, and demeaning (Hal i fax , 1988; Adams, 1983; S o c i a l Ass is tance Review Committee, 1988). This can further re in force the r e c i p i e n t ' s view of themselves as f a i l u r e s and further undermine t h e i r confidence, esteem, d i g n i t y , mot ivat ion, assert iveness and independence (Adams, 1983) . Another e f fec t of the l i m i t e d contact between workers and c l i e n t s can be a lack of information and guidance to c l i e n t s . L i t t l e information i s a v a i l a b l e to help c l i e n t s i d e n t i f y , u t i l i z e , and make informed dec i s ions about ava i lab le resources and serv ices (Soc ia l Ass is tance Review Committee, 1988; H a l i f a x , 1988; Manitoba, 1983; P e r r i n , 1987; Adams 1983; Canadian Counci l of S o c i a l Development, 1971; The S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto, 1989). Studies have a lso noted that i n addi t ion to a lack of information there i s often a lack of support mechanisms for s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s . The S o c i a l Ass is tance Review Committee (1988) reports that r e c i p i e n t s require a range of serv ices and supports but that present ly c l i e n t s tend to be poorly served and w i l l continue to have d i f f i c u l t i e s accessing the services they need. One of the major recommendations of the SARC report i s the development of an "opportunity planning" funct ion . I t notes that " l i t t l e comprehensive information about resources and services i s r e a d i l y a v a i l a b l e and when i t i s , l i t t l e help i s provided to help r e c i p i e n t s decide what serv ices might be appropriate" (1988:204). The H a l i f a x study adds that the s o c i a l ass istance system was not designed to provide assessment of job-readiness and consequently r e c i p i e n t s are not provided the " . . . t h e in format iona l , counse l l ing , and planning supports that are neces sary . . . to chart an achievable path through a complex system of programs and c r i t e r i a " (1988:v). Another c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of s o c i a l ass is tance programs i s s t i gmat i za t ion . There i s a tendency i n our soc ie ty to hold s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s i n low regard (Lawrence, 1973). Titmuss (1976) points out that the l egac ies of the value system and moral i ty that developed the Poor Laws are s t i l l prevalent and have played an important r o l e i n the formation of the modern approach to s o c i a l p o l i c y . Although he i s w r i t i n g about B r i t a i n , the observations are equal ly re levant to Canada: The stigmata of the poor law t e s t , moral judgements by people about other people and t h e i r behaviour, were a condi t ion of r e d i s t r i b u t i o n . . . F r o m i t s 57 operation for over a century B r i t a i n i n h e r i t e d i n 1948 a whole set of adminis trat ive a t t i t u d e s , values and r i t e s ; e s s e n t i a l l y middle-c lass i n s t ruc ture ; and m o r a l i s t i c i n a p p l i c a t i o n . (p. 189-190) S o c i a l ass istance programs l a t e n t l y and manifest ly r e f l e c t these "longstanding community judgements, b e l i e f of erroneous information, s e l ec t i ve b i a s , unsympathetic media a t t en t ion , i n s e n s i t i v e p o l i t i c a l leadership and the negative judgements customarily reserved for those at the bottom of the heap" (Manitoba, 1983). Some of the s t igmat iz ing and demeaning elements and procedures of s o c i a l ass is tance systems are the u t i l i z a t i o n of vouchers instead of cash, d i r e c t payment of rents and u t i l i t y b i l l s , the need to have permission from a s o c i a l worker to p a r t i c i p a t e i n c e r t a i n a c t i v i t i e s (e .g . courses) , and some of the enforcement prac t i ce s u t i l i z e d i n some provinces (e.g. asking neighbours whether or not there i s a common-law r e s i d i n g at a res idence) . Manitoba's (1983) study argues that: . . . s o c i a l ass istance systems pay so much a t tent ion to the need to protect other members of the community from the excesses of r e c i p i e n t s that r e c i p i e n t s come to define t h e i r a l l too modest 58 a l l o c a t i o n as an u n f a i r charge upon the community.(p. 34) S o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s often begin to i n t e r n a l i z e these negative a t t i tudes and begin to see themselves as unworthy and undeserving of a bet ter exis tence . Studies by Nadler et a l . (1976, 1979) suggest that one e f fec t of welfare systems i s to lower the s e l f -esteem of r e c i p i e n t s thereby increas ing dependency on the system. S o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s a lso face p o t e n t i a l labour market marg ina l i ty . Studies suggest that employers may r e s i s t h i r i n g welfare c l i e n t s because they fear r e c i p i e n t s w i l l be u n s k i l l e d , uneducated, l a z y , u n r e l i a b l e or have l o s t the habi t of working (Hal i fax , 1988; Swadron, 1972; Ashby, 1985). S o c i a l ass is tance i s r e l a t e d to long-term unemployment and one of the primary problems fac ing those who have been out of the labour market for any length of time i s less a t trac t iveness to employers and a reluctance of employers to o f f er them jobs (Holland, 1985; Ashby, 1985). In summary, the present ph i lo soph ica l and s t r u c t u r a l approach to s o c i a l ass istance across Canada has a v a r i e t y of negative economic and psycho-soc ia l rami f i ca t ions for 59 c l i e n t s . S o c i a l ass istance i s s t i l l based on dated values and assumptions about poverty and r e c i p i e n t s . The values and assumptions are i m p l i c i t l y and e x p l i c i t l y conveyed to s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s i n ways that are both subt le and not so subt le . They have d i c t a t e d a p h i l o s o p h i c a l approach that d e l i v e r s s o c i a l ass is tance through a demeaning and s t igmat iz ing system that can marginal ize and trap r e c i p i e n t s on ass is tance through inadequate rates , lack of program c o - o r d i n a t i o n , complexity, inequi ty , lack of incent ives , d i s i n c e n t i v e s , d i s p a r i t i e s i n services and a f a i l u r e to address the complex and diverse needs of the heterogeneous populat ion that makes up welfare caseloads. Recipients often f ee l detached from the processes a f f ec t ing t h e i r l i v e s which leads , i n t u r n , to fee l ings of powerlessness, f u t i l i t y , f r u s t r a t i o n , res ignat ion and hopelessness as we l l as lowered perceptions of se l f -worth , confidence, d i g n i t y and mot ivat ion. Accompanying the s i g n i f i c a n t economic and s o c i a l changes of the 1970's and 1980's has been a c a l l for a r e - a p p r a i s a l of the functions and r o l e of s o c i a l ass i s tance . The next sect ion examines recent trends i n 60 s o c i a l ass is tance and the i n s t i t u t i o n a l response to the problems of s o c i a l ass istance i n the 1990's and beyond. Recent Welfare I n i t i a t i v e s J u d i t h Gueron (1987a, 1987b) analyzes the debate i n s o c i a l ass is tance p o l i c y over the l a s t twenty-f ive years as an attempt to balance the competing values and object ives of s o c i a l welfare p o l i c y : the reduct ion of poverty, the encouragement of i n d i v i d u a l s to be s e l f support ing, and the minimization of program costs . I n s t i t u t i o n a l l y , the argument has b a s i c a l l y been whether s o c i a l ass is tance systems should be s tructured as "broad ent i t lements , with a id cond i t iona l only on c a t e g o r i c a l e l i g i b i l i t y and income, or reshaped to impose ob l iga t ions on r e c i p i e n t s to perform unpaid w o r k . . . o r to p a r t i c i p a t e i n some employment re la ted a c t i v i t y such as job search or s k i l l s t r a i n i n g " (Gueron, 1986:6). The l i t e r a t u r e suggests that over the l a s t twenty-f ive years , and p a r t i c u l a r l y the l a s t ten, there has been a trend towards a model of s o c i a l ass istance with an increased emphasis on ge t t ing people back into the labour force and o f f s o c i a l ass i s tance . Studies completed i n the 198O's by Manitoba (1983), Saskatchewan (Adams, 1983), Ontario (1988), The Assoc ia t ion of M u n i c i p a l i t i e s of Ontar io , 61 1987; H a l i f a x (1988) and The S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto (1989) ind icate a strong s h i f t i n Canada towards a more progressive and pro -ac t ive approach to s o c i a l ass i s tance . The S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto (1989) states that : . . . i f the object ive i s to optimize the i n d i v i d u a l worker's a b i l i t y to adapt to r a p i d l y changing economic condi t ions , then p u b l i c p o l i c y needs to adopt pro -ac t ive s trateg ies that encourage the l i f e -long l earn ing of s k i l l s rather than r e l y on reac t ive s t ra teg i e s . (p. 77) The Ontario Report, e n t i t l e d T r a n s i t i o n s . i s the most comprehensive review of the s o c i a l ass istance system i n Canada and i n many respects brings together the ideas that have been emerging and developing i n Canada, and abroad, over the l a s t ten to f i f t e e n years . The recommendations contained i n Trans i t i ons w i l l be explored i n d e t a i l i n the next sec t ion . I t i s a lso important to note that studies i n A u s t r a l i a (Cass, 1986 and 1988; Owen, 1986; and Ogburn, 1986) and by the Organizat ion For Economic Cooperation and Development (1989) a lso advocate a more ac t ive approach towards the problem of unemployment that promotes and a s s i s t s the entry of new 62 groups i n t o the labour market and works t o break down the b a r r i e r s t h a t get i n the way of t h i s p r o c e s s . The t r e n d i n Canada, t h e o r e t i c a l l y a t l e a s t , appears t o be moving towards the a c t i v e market p o l i c y system t h a t has operated i n Sweden s i n c e the end of the Second World War. The a c t i v e l a b o u r market system i n Sweden i s d e s c r i b e d by the S o c i a l P l a n n i n g C o u n c i l o f M e t r o p o l i t a n Toronto (1989) as: those programs which promote e i t h e r j o b c r e a t i o n where labour demand i s too low t o l e a d t o f u l l employment... or the re-adjustment o f l a b o u r t o the i n t e r s e c t o r a l o r i n t e r a r e a d i f f e r e n c e s and v a r i a n c e s i n the s t r u c t u r e o f demand. (p. 94) The Swedish system employs both demand and sup p l y -s i d e p o l i c i e s although, s i n c e the l a t e 1970's, t h e r e has been an emphasis and r a p i d growth of s u p p l y - s i d e i n t e r v e n t i o n s i n the form of a d u l t t r a i n i n g programs ( S o c i a l P l a n n i n g C o u n c i l o f M e t r o p o l i t a n Toronto, 1989; Sweden, 1987/88). Recent t r e n d s i n s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e b e g i n from the assumption t h a t i n d i v i d u a l s , and s o c i e t y , are b e t t e r o f f when people are working and s e l f - s u f f i c i e n t . While t h i s u n d e r l y i n g assumption i s d i f f i c u l t t o d i s a g r e e w i t h i n 6 3 theory, the actual implementation of employment i n i t i a t i v e s i n s o c i a l ass istance systems has v a r i e d tremendously, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the United States , and has had mixed r e s u l t s . The i n i t i a t i v e s that have been undertaken r e f l e c t very d i f f e r e n t p h i l o s o p h i c a l and s t r u c t u r a l approaches. Employment I n i t i a t i v e s i n the United States I t i s important, at t h i s po int , to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between the terms "workfare" and "work-for-benef i ts ." Work-for-benef i ts i s a more narrow term s p e c i f i c a l l y meaning that r e c i p i e n t s must work i n exchange for economic benef i t s . Workfare i s a more general term that can include work-for-benef i ts but a l so includes s t ra teg ies l i k e targeted t r a i n i n g and job-search ass i s tance . Employment i n i t i a t i v e s have a longer h i s t o r y i n the United States than i n Canada. In response to increas ing numbers of people dependent on s o c i a l ass is tance i n the l a t e 1960 *s, the United States government implemented the Work Incentive Program (WIN) i n 1968. Under the program, s tates had to have a c e r t a i n por t ion of i t s s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s involved i n job searching or j o b -r e l a t e d t r a i n i n g programs. In 1973, WIN was changed to place more of an emphasis on-the-job t r a i n i n g combined with tougher sanctions for those who d i d not a c t i v e l y seek work. The WIN program was changed again i n 1981 with the in troduct ion of the Omnibus Budget R e c o n c i l i a t i o n Act (OBRA). The object ives of OBRA were to promote expenditure cuts and to give states f l e x i b i l i t y i n designing t h e i r own work-related programs for welfare r e c i p i e n t s . In add i t i on , the act introduced the concept of work-for-benef i ts into l e g i s l a t i o n . For the f i r s t time, states could require r e c i p i e n t s to work i n p u b l i c or non-prof i t agencies i n exchange for ass i s tance . States were also given author iza t ion to fund t r a i n i n g programs by d i r e c t i n g a r e c i p i e n t ' s welfare payment to be used as a wage subsidy for employers (Gueron, 1986) . Despite the opportunity to implement work-for-benef i t schemes, states es tabl i shed them i n only l i m i t e d ways. Ogburn (1986) points out that t h i s was p r i m a r i l y because work-for-benef i t programs involve major i n s t i t u t i o n a l r e s t r u c t u r i n g and high costs . Sk lar (1986) argues that evaluators and l e g i s l a t o r s r e a l i z e d that i t cost as much, or more, to administer a work-for-benef i t s program than i t saved as a r e s u l t of benef i t terminat ion 65 of non-complying c l i e n t s . Sklar (1986) points out that : . . . t h e only two benef i ts that have been shown to have the most p o s i t i v e and l a s t i n g impact on the employabi l i ty of the long-term unemployed are s k i l l s t r a i n i n g and academic remediation, e s p e c i a l l y when they are provided i n a supported work-type program that features comprehensive treatment of work-r e l a t e d needs with adequate supportive s erv i ce s . (p.32) The Manpower Demonstration Research Corporat ion (MDRC) i n i t i a t e d a f i ve year study i n 1982 of s tate e f f o r t s to res tructure the r e l a t i o n s h i p between welfare and work (Gueron 198 6) . The MDRC study reported that by and large states chose not to implement work-for-benef i t schemes. Most states chose a model based on a required job-search component. Gueron (1986) argues that job search was less c o n t r o v e r s i a l , l ess c o s t l y , and eas ier to administer than work-for-benef i t schemes. O v e r a l l , the f indings of the MDRC study suggest that soc ie ty as a whole general ly gains from workfare programs and that work approaches for s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s can increase employment and be c o s t - e f f e c t i v e . The study suggests that change can be e f f ec t ive on a large sca le . 66 Other conclusions are that: 1. . . . i t i s f e a s i b l e , under c e r t a i n condit ions and on the scale at which the demonstration programs were implemented, to t i e the rece ip t of welfare to p a r t i c i p a t i o n o b l i g a t i o n s . 2. . . . a number of quite d i f f e r e n t ways of s t r u c t u r i n g and target ing these programs w i l l y i e l d e f f e c t i v e r e s u l t s . 3. . . . the program led to r e l a t i v e l y modest increases i n employment, which i n some cases t rans la t ed in to even smaller welfare savings (Gueron, 1987a, 1987b). A 1986 report by Jud i th Gueron, pres ident of The Manpower Demonstration Research Corporat ion, points to other important f indings of the study. One such f ind ing was the need for s o c i a l ass istance systems to provide serv ices to the long-term disadvantaged r e c i p i e n t s . Results suggest that welfare programs have a greater impact on the hard-to-employ although ac tua l job placements may be lower. The study points out that "a program achieving high placement rates by working with people who would have found jobs on t h e i r own may look successful but, i n fac t , may not have accomplished much" (Gueron, 1986:12). 67 An i n i t i a t i v e not studied by the MDRC but worth examining i n more d e t a i l i s an innovative and comprehensive program developed by Massachusetts. The approach might best be examined by contras t ing i t with a program developed i n Pennsylvania. The two programs have the best records i n reducing welfare caseloads but have very d i f f e r e n t approaches and p h i l o s o p h i c a l o r i e n t a t i o n s . The Pennsylvania approach makes i t mandatory for a l l employable r e c i p i e n t s to p a r t i c i p a t e i n a j o b -search. I f r e c i p i e n t s do not p a r t i c i p a t e , the program cuts them o f f s o c i a l ass i s tance . The program provides a minimum of j o b - t r a i n i n g , does not support education i n i t i a t i v e s , and does not support re la ted employment costs l i k e daycare or medical coverage (Rofuth, 1986) . The Massachusetts program, i n comparison, i s an example of what Kaus (1986) re fers to a "soft" workfare. The program i s voluntary with an emphasis on t r a i n i n g , education, assessment and career counse l l ing , on-the-job t r a i n i n g and work placement. Recipients rece ive extra s o c i a l ass istance benef i ts to attend the program and a bonus i f they complete the course (Ives, 1988). Transportat ion i s a v a i l a b l e to p a r t i c i p a n t s while they 68 are i n the program and day care i s a v a i l a b l e while p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the program and for up to a year a f t er obta ining a job . In Massachusetts the Department of Pub l i c Welfare has developed contracts with educational and s k i l l s - t r a i n i n g organizat ions throughout the s tate to provide a range of services and opportun i t i e s . The r e s u l t s from the program have been encouraging. Evaluat ions suggest that while s o c i a l ass is tance benef i t s have increased 32% since 1983, caseloads have decreased by 6%. Proponents of the program c la im that 30,000 r e c i p i e n t s have obtained f u l l or part- t ime jobs and that the average s t a r t i n g sa lary i s 2.5 times the year ly welfare grant . E i g h t y - s i x percent of those who obtain jobs are s t i l l o f f ass istance one year l a t e r (Muszynski, 1987). An important p r e - r e q u i s i t e to the success of the Massachusetts program was the a v a i l a b i l i t y of jobs and an unemployment rate of l ess than four percent statewide (Willms, 1987). Perhaps more important than the ac tua l f igures , however, i s the approach and comprehensiveness of the program. The biggest d i f ference between a program l i k e Massachusetts and many of the programs that were i n s t i t u t e d across the United States , other than i t s 69 comprehensiveness, i s choice . Recipients get to choose up front whether or not they want to p a r t i c i p a t e and they get to choose what i t i s they need i n order to get a job or to someday be s e l f - s u f f i c i e n t . The philosophy behind the program i s that people want to work, that the t r a n s i t i o n to independence i s often a long-term investment and that people can f i n d non-subsidized work i f given a choice of a l t ernat ives that f i t t h e i r needs. In an analys i s of the impact of a program l i k e Massachusetts, i n comparison to programs l i k e Pennsylvania, i t can be argued that ne i ther program w i l l solve the "welfare problem." In ne i ther case, were there large reductions i n s o c i a l ass istance caseloads and welfare expenditures, although i t appears that a greater proport ionate reduct ion occurred under the Massachusetts program. The Massachusetts approach a lso appears to produce bet ter r e s u l t s with the more employment-disadvantaged groups. This i s an important d i s t i n c t i o n i n program success as studies suggest that although long-term r e c i p i e n t s make up 25% of U .S . welfare caseloads, they consume 60% of i t s budget (Whitman, 1987). Whitman argues, therefore , that " . . . g e t t i n g someone o f f the dole i s not the crux of the problem-whom you get o f f i s" 70 (1987:23). Supporters argue that welfare-to-work programs l i k e Massachusetts are worth the cost because of the p o t e n t i a l , i n the long run, for a re turn on the investment. The Massachusetts program has proven to be successful and given time and increased funding i t should be able to s i g n i f i c a n t l y reduce the number of long-term dependent r e c i p i e n t s . Rofuth argues that the pay-of f i n programs l i k e Massachusetts are not immediate and l e g i s l a t o r s need to take a longer-term approach to the "welfare problem" and r e a l i z e the " . . . v a l u e i n cos t -e f f e c t i v e education and j o b - t r a i n i n g programs that o f f er t r a n s i t i o n a l support to help the most economically disadvantaged c i t i z e n s f ind a permanent place i n the workforce" (1987:21). The Massachusetts program i s an approach that could be r e f e r r e d to as fundamental welfare reform. Involv ing an ac t ive and supportive philosophy of voluntary p a r t i c i p a t i o n and choice i t represents a r a d i c a l departure i n the de l i very and ph i lo soph ica l approach of s o c i a l ass is tance systems. Even c r i t i c s of the program l i k e Kaus concede the program i s "about as good a voluntary j o b - t r a i n i n g program as we are l i k e l y to get" 71 (1986:26). Kaus argues the program i s too l e n i e n t , does not "solve the problem" of the cu l ture of poverty and that the only way to solve the problem i s to re in force the work e t h i c . In response to c r i t i c s l i k e Kaus the argument has been that employment i n i t i a t i v e s can not be s o l e l y expected to be the so lu t ion to the "welfare problem." Gueron (1987a) argues that workfare programs can only be part of the answer and that i f the impacts of workfare programs are to be maximized they have to be complemented by other reforms i n tax laws, education, t r a i n i n g and r e - t r a i n i n g , increased ch i ld - support enforcement and job creat ion programs. Employment I n i t i a t i v e s i n Canada Although there have been few experiments to match the United States , employment i n i t i a t i v e s i n Canada date back to the 1970's. The i n i t i a t i v e s that have been undertaken have tended to be i s o l a t e d , sporadic , piecemeal, ad-hoc, poorly evaluated and more r h e t o r i c a l than substant ive . The e f for t s to date have amounted to l i t t l e more than t i n k e r i n g and represent l i t t l e i n the way of comprehensive or fundamental welfare reform. S i m i l a r to the United States , the recessions of the 72 1970's and ear ly 1980's have forced Canadian p o l i c y makers and l e g i s l a t o r s to re-evaluate s o c i a l ass is tance and explore new approaches and methods of d e l i v e r y . A l b e r t a has been one of the more ac t ive provinces and has experimented with a v a r i e t y of employment i n i t i a t i v e s dat ing back to the 1970*s. In the l a t e 1970's A l b e r t a developed the Employment S k i l l s Demonstration Pro jec t . The eighteen month program was targeted at prov id ing temporary work experience for chronic r e c i p i e n t s (Jonhar Assoc iates , 1982). In 1978 the province developed the Condi t iona l E l i g i b i l i t y Program which was mandatory and provided counse l l ing services and ass istance i n the job search. A l b e r t a a lso developed a work-for-benef i t s scheme i n 1982 which was cance l l ed , l a r g e l y because i t was shown to be cost i n e f f i c i e n t (Be l la , 1983). B r i t i s h Columbia has a lso experimented with workfare i n i t i a t i v e s but, again, the e f for t s have been p iece -meal, r e s i d u a l i n nature and poorly evaluated. The P r o v i n c i a l A l l i a n c e of Businessmen p r o j e c t , e s tabl i shed i n 1969, was based on a b e l i e f that poverty was an " i n d i v i d u a l s tate of mind which could be improved through a combination of coercion and opportunity" (Armitage, Cal lahan, Prince and Wharf, 1989:4). In 1976 and 1980, 73 r e s p e c t i v e l y , the S o c i a l Cred i t government es tabl i shed the P r o v i n c i a l R e h a b i l i t a t i o n and Employment Program (PREP) and the Ind iv idua l Opportunit ies P lan . Both these programs were designed to improve the capaci ty of s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s to be job ready. The JOBTRAC program i n i t i a t e d i n 1976 d i f f e r e d from the previous workfare programs with an emphasis on job crea t ion rather than job readiness . In a review of B r i t i s h Columbia's workfare schemes, Armitage et a l . i d e n t i f y three bas ic s t ra teg i e s : enhancing employabi l i ty through counse l l ing and t r a i n i n g , creat ing new jobs or e x i s t i n g ones, and t ightened welfare e l i g i b i l i t y . The author's conclude that , o v e r a l l , B r i t i s h Columbia's workfare schemes have not had a major impact on the number of people rece iv ing s o c i a l ass is tance and "that the most powerful inf luence a f f e c t i n g the s o c i a l ass istance caseload i s the number of jobs ava i lab le" (1989:26). Several other employment i n i t i a t i v e s programs have been developed i n Canada during the 1980's inc lud ing the Peel Project 1000, Ontar io ' s Employment I n i t i a t i v e s programs, and The Hal i fax Human Resources Development Assoc ia t ion (Jonhar Associates , 1982; Muszynski, 1987). Muszynski, however, points out that there have been few 74 formal evaluat ions of these programs and l i t t l e i s known about t h e i r e f fect iveness . One program, however, that has undergone a formal evaluat ion i s the Ontario Work Incentive Program (WIN) . The WIN program was es tabl i shed i n 1980 and was designed to "encourage long term s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s to seek, ga in , and hold f u l l time employment" (Socia l P o l i c y Research Assoc iates , 1982:5). The key elements of the program were a monthly cash benef i t , hea l th benef i ts coverage, promise of quick reinstatement i f the job was l o s t and a Family Benefi t phase-out allowance. A study of the WIN program i n 1982 found that i n sp i te of only p a r t i a l implementation the program had a "s ign i f i cant" impact and savings as high as $5-6 m i l l i o n were estimated (Socia l P o l i c y Research Assoc iates , 1982). Other f indings of the study were that education and t r a i n i n g were s i g n i f i c a n t fac tors i n p a r t i c i p a n t ' s success i n achieving s e l f - s u f f i c i e n c y , job search s o p h i s t i c a t i o n and support played a c r i t i c a l r o l e i n i n d i v i d u a l s f ind ing work, and there was a need for improved support and s tar t -up support s t ruc tures . A study by the Nat ional Ant i -Poverty Organizat ion (1989) examined the strengths and weaknesses of job t r a i n i n g programs across Canada for s o c i a l ass is tance 75 r e c i p i e n t s . I t concluded that despite the many serious flaws, hardships and constra ints presented i n the e x i s t i n g s tructures , 78% of respondents sa id they considered themselves bet ter o f f for undertaking t r a i n i n g , even though only 41% sa id they got jobs as a r e s u l t and an a d d i t i o n a l 28% went on to further t r a i n i n g . The report recommends that changes i n federa l and p r o v i n c i a l t r a i n i n g programs should be d i rec ted towards achieving cons i s t ent ly higher standards i n the q u a l i t y of t r a i n i n g , reducing the f i n a n c i a l and p r a c t i c a l b a r r i e r s to t r a i n i n g for p a r t i c i p a n t s , , and making the f u l l range of t r a i n i n g opportunit ies a v a i l a b l e to a l l s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s who want them. Throughout the 1980's, there was a number of major reports and studies released which r e f l e c t e d the need for a fundamental re-examination of the r o l e of s o c i a l ass is tance i n Canada within the contemporary economic and s o c i a l context. In 1985 the M i n i s t e r of Nat ional Health and Welfare stated that " . . .one of the major problems fac ing the country today i s the number of Canadians on welfare r o l l s who are ready, w i l l i n g , and able to work" (National Health and Welfare, 1985:1). Major s tudies i n Manitoba (1983), H a l i f a x (1988), Ontario 76 (Soc ia l Ass is tance Review Committee, 1988) and Saskatchewan (Adams, 1983) r e f l e c t d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n with the present approach towards s o c i a l ass is tance across Canada. The studies point to the need for welfare systems to be more p o s i t i v e and ac t ive i n t h e i r e f f o r t s to a s s i s t i n d i v i d u a l s "trapped" on welfare make the t r a n s i t i o n from dependence to independence. By far the most comprehensive and thorough examination of the s o c i a l ass istance system i n Canada was undertaken i n Ontar io . The S o c i a l Ass is tance Review Committee (SARC) was establ i shed i n J u l y , 1986, to examine and analyze the "guiding p r i n c i p l e s and object ives of s o c i a l ass istance and re la ted programs" (SARC, 1988:3). Released i n September, 1988, the repor t , e n t i t l e d T r a n s i t i o n s , i s the f i r s t s i g n i f i c a n t study i n Canada to argue persuas ive ly for a fundamental r e -s t r u c t u r i n g and r e - t h i n k i n g of the r o l e of the s o c i a l ass is tance system. The report i s a s i g n i f i c a n t change i n philosophy towards the poor, the unemployed, and the r o l e of s o c i a l ass i s tance . I t symbolizes an awareness that the present approach of s o c i a l ass istance systems i s not meeting the needs of the people on welfare nor of soc ie ty i n genera l . 77 A fundamental s h i f t i n the SARC r e p o r t ' s perspect ive from the h i s t o r i c a l and present approach to s o c i a l ass is tance i s the recogni t ion that the present approaches and s tructures of welfare systems work to i n h i b i t the move from dependency to s e l f - s u f f i c i e n c y . S e l f - r e l i a n c e and independence are c e n t r a l themes of the repor t . The concept i s that people (and society) are be t ter o f f when they are f u l l y p a r t i c i p a t i n g and contr ibut ing members of soc ie ty . The report argues that "each person i s of inherent worth and should be perceived capable of reason, choice , s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n , and independence" (SARC, 1988:8). I t a lso argues that work i s an e s s e n t i a l part of p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n soc ie ty . While the report stresses that work i s only one element of meaningful p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n soc ie ty , i t i s seen as a very important part and one of the primary ways that i n d i v i d u a l s "become integrated into and p a r t i c i p a t e i n the l i f e of the community" (SARC Summary, 1988:21). The report out l ines a "new approach to helping" that views s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s , l i k e a l l members of soc ie ty , as people i n t r a n s i t i o n . The report envis ions a s o c i a l ass istance system as more than simply a process for r e d i s t r i b u t i n g f i n a n c i a l resources. I t views the 78 unemployed on ass istance as people with complex needs and r e q u i r i n g emotional and s t r u c t u r a l help to a s s i s t i n the process of t r a n s i t i o n . Society has an o b l i g a t i o n , and i t i s i n s o c i e t y ' s best i n t e r e s t , to provide a range of opportuni t ies for a l l i n d i v i d u a l s that f a c i l i t a t e s and supports the process of t r a n s i t i o n . David Thornley (1989), commenting on the SARC report , notes that the report i s a l so sound economic p o l i c y : . . . i t takes a $2 b i l l i o n / y e a r system that i s f a i l i n g both the people i t was designed to serve and the p u b l i c genera l ly , and with a modest in fus ion of funds transforms that system into one that can give people r e a l choices i n t h e i r l i v e s , promote s e l f -r e l i a n c e and reduce long-term dependency. (p. 6) An e s s e n t i a l element of the SARC report i s the recogni t ion that changes i n the s tructure of the s o c i a l ass is tance system must be accompanied by broader s o c i e t a l changes and an o v e r a l l strategy invo lv ing the community at l a r g e . The report c a l l s for government to take a leadership r o l e i n an ongoing e f f o r t to maximize employment opportuni t i e s . One of the p r i n c i p l e changes c a l l e d for i s a more thorough in tegra t ion of economic and s o c i a l p o l i c y . The report points out that a new 79 approach to he lping people i n need would "necessitate an ongoing e f f o r t to ensure that there are s u f f i c i e n t numbers of safe, meaningful and f a i r l y compensated jobs" (SARC Summary, 1988:21). I t i s a lso important to note that the SARC report does not advocate the evolut ion towards a more p o s i t i v e , ac t ive system at the expense of the more t r a d i t i o n a l r o l e of s o c i a l allowance systems which i s the p r o v i s i o n of a minimum l e v e l of income. The move towards a more ac t ive welfare system i s viewed as an added dimension to s o c i a l ass i s tance . I t i s pointed out that a f a i r and equitable l e v e l of ass is tance , along with safe and adequate housing, i s a p r e - r e q u i s i t e to t r a n s i t i o n . The report r e j e c t s the argument that the "spur of poverty" i s necessary i n the t r a n s i t i o n to s e l f - s u f f i c i e n c y . C l e a r l y , the struggle to survive i s counter-productive to t r a n s i t i o n . The SARC report also makes i t c l e a r , however, that a p o l i c y of f u l l employment i s not enough i n the increas ing ly competitive labour market. The report points out that one of the fastest growing groups of r e c i p i e n t s i s the "unemployed employable" which i s at l eas t p a r t l y due to these r e c i p i e n t s lack of s k i l l s to 80 compete i n the post -recess ion economy and because of increased competition i n the t ightened labour market. I t i s important to note that the SARC report , p a r t i c u l a r l y the Ontario government's i n t e r p r e t a t i o n and implementation of i t , has been c r i t i c i z e d (Ralph, 1989; Thornley, 1989). A major c r i t i c i s m of the report i s that i t contains no recommendations for permanent job c r e a t i o n . Ralph (1989) notes that t h i s i s p a r t i c u l a r l y problematic for women. She argues that urging women to work without a commitment to job c r e a t i o n , pay equi ty , u n i v e r s i t y l e v e l t r a i n i n g and affordable q u a l i t y daycare, " w i l l simply condemn them to j o i n i n g the working poor" (1989:65) . Other poss ib le negative elements of the implementation process of the SARC report , noted by Ralph, may be s t igmat iz ing and coercing employable r e c i p i e n t s ; perpetuating the poverty of women; r a i s i n g rents and depressing wages for working people; contrac t ing out or automating many human serv ice workers' jobs; condemning a l l r ec ip i en t s and the working poor to poverty; e l iminat ing s o c i a l insurance programs and r i g h t s , and l i k e l y r a i s i n g taxes and t r a n s f e r r i n g even more of the tax burden to working people. 81 In summary, the SARC report recommends a s i g n i f i c a n t change i n philosophy towards the poor, the unemployed, and the r o l e of s o c i a l ass istance systems. Comprehensive, innovative and far -reach ing , i t synthesizes in to the Canadian context many of the ideas that have been evolv ing over the l a s t twenty years i n Canada and abroad. Despite i t s c r i t i c s and shortcomings, the report i s symbolic of an awareness that the present approach to s o c i a l ass is tance i s not meeting the needs of the people on welfare nor of soc iety i n general . I t advocates a fundamental change from the present "care-based" and passive approach which tends to t r e a t people on ass is tance as a homogeneous e n t i t y to an "act ive , developmental and goa l -or ientated approach" that views people on ass istance as a heterogeneous group with a vast array of complex and i n t e r r e l a t e d problems and needs. Conclusion Several themes emerge from the l i t e r a t u r e review. A cons is tent and underlying theme i s that work plays a c e n t r a l economic and psycho-soc ia l r o l e i n our soc ie ty . Unemployment tends to have a v a r i e t y of negative psycho-s o c i a l and economic e f fects on i n d i v i d u a l s , f a m i l i e s , and 82 communities. The model and s t r u c t u r e of s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e t h a t has e v o l v e d i n Canada were designed as r e s i d u a l and s h o r t - t e r m measures t o g i v e people the necessary time t o r e - e n t e r the l a b o u r f o r c e . In p r a c t i c e , the p r e s e n t approach i s i n e f f e c t i v e , i n e f f i c i e n t , s t i g m a t i z i n g , demeaning, and works t o m a r g i n a l i z e and t r a p people i n l i f e s t y l e s of dependency and poverty. I n c r e a s i n g l y , i t i s b e i n g r e c o g n i z e d t h a t the p r e s e n t approach t o s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e i s inadequate and c o u n t e r - p r o d u c t i v e , i s not meeting the needs o f r e c i p i e n t s or s o c i e t y , and needs t o be r e - e v a l u a t e d and adapted t o the economic and s o c i a l c o n d i t i o n s of the 1990's and beyond. In r e c e n t y e a r s , t h e r e has been a t r e n d towards a model o f s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e which i s p r o - a c t i v e i n g e t t i n g people o f f s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e and i n t o the l a b o u r f o r c e . Employment i n i t i a t i v e s t o date, however, have v a r i e d s u b s t a n t i a l l y and r e f l e c t d i f f e r e n t p h i l o s o p h i c a l and s t r u c t u r a l approaches. The U n i t e d S t a t e s has experimented e x t e n s i v e l y w i t h d i f f e r e n t workfare models but g e n e r a l l y has adopted " s o f t " approaches emphasizing t r a i n i n g programs and j o b -s e a r c h components. Recent i n i t i a t i v e s and e x p e r i e n c e s 83 i n Canada suggest that t h i s country i s fo l lowing the United States example and i s emphasizing a supply-s ide strategy for deal ing with unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance dependency. There appears to be a re luctance on the part of Canadian governments to implement the more comprehensive welfare reform s trateg ies being c a l l e d for i n reports l i k e Trans i t i ons or Target on T r a i n i n g :  Meeting Worker's Needs i n a Changing Economy (Socia l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto, 1989). In response to the increased emphasis on soft workfare models emphasizing t r a i n i n g and counse l l ing , there has been, i n recent years, a p r o l i f e r a t i o n of s o c i a l ass istance programs designed to f u l f i l these objec t ives . Programs and p o l i c i e s for the unemployed on s o c i a l ass is tance , however, tend to be p a t e r n a l i s t i c a l l y designed and implemented according to the goals and circumstances of the group that i s not experiencing the poverty and unemployment. The consumers of the welfare product are seldom consulted on what they th ink i s important and what they think about how they are treated and approached i n s t i t u t i o n a l l y i n order to reach the goals that , according to the l i t e r a t u r e , both s ides share. I t seems l o g i c a l and common-sense that i f soc ie ty 84 wants to s er ious ly address the "welfare problem" i t has to s t a r t with an understanding of the group that i s perceived as having the problem. That i s the purpose of t h i s study. 85 Chapter III THE RESEARCH PROBLEM: ISSUES TO BE RESEARCHED Introduct ion The unemployed on s o c i a l ass istance may have needs and problems which are not addressed by p o l i c y makers and programmers but which may be adversely a f f e c t i n g t h e i r t r a n s i t i o n from dependency to independency. Hence, the objec t ive of t h i s study i s to explore the primary and secondary (unintended and latent) e f f ec t s , as perceived by the c l i e n t s , of a three month supportive employment counse l l ing program that serves unemployed s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s i n Edmonton, A l b e r t a . The Personal Support and Development Network (PSDN) The Personal Support and Development Network (PSDN) was es tabl i shed i n June, 1988. The goal of the program i s to "provide a thorough personal ized ac t ion plan for i n d i v i d u a l s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s , to i d e n t i f y s p e c i f i c routes towards t h e i r achieving s e l f - s u f f i c i e n c y and to support the c l i e n t while implementing that ac t ion plan" (1). PSDN was designed to deal s p e c i f i c a l l y with 86 the c h r o n i c a l l y unemployed, the s o - c a l l e d bottom "two-t h i r d s " of ass istance caseloads. The target group of the program are s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s who experience b a r r i e r s to t h e i r employabi l i ty and who express a w i l l ingness to p a r t i c i p a t e i n the program. The PSDN model i s based on a ser ies of voluntary one-on-one counse l l ing sessions which encourage and support the development of an ac t ion plan by the p a r t i c i p a n t . Employment counse l l ing has been defined by the organizat ion as a "series of a c t i v i t i e s to overcome b a r r i e r s . . . the person who i s caught i n an unemployment s i t u a t i o n must work through a maze of b a r r i e r s to h i s (or her) success." PSDN's Act ion Planning serv ice does not have a s ing le serv ice track or a f ixed number of steps. The program was designed for f l e x i b i l i t y which allows the program to "adapt to the serv ice needs of the appl icant rather than demanding that the c l i e n t adapt to the demands of a f ixed program format." The process of program d e l i v e r y of the program i s as fol lows: 1. Intake: Referra l s come from Alber ta S o c i a l Service D i s t r i c t O f f i c e s . 2. Assessment: The i n i t i a l e f f o r t of the 87 serv ice i s to gain an understanding of the c l i e n t , the fami ly , and environmental circumstances as we l l as the t r a i n i n g and employment h i s t o r y i n order to achieve a j o i n t ac t ion plan between the counsel lor and c l i e n t . A contract i s es tabl i shed between the c l i e n t and counse l lor but "the path which any c l i e n t takes to reach a goal i s u n i q u e . . . P e r s o n a l a t t r i b u t e s and requirements determine the nature of the path designed." 3. Counsel l ing Support: The PSDN counse l lor maintains contact with c l i e n t s from the i n i t i a l intake sess ion u n t i l c losure . A minimum of two counse l l ing hours per month i s provided and support i s maintained throughout the assessment and planning phases. PSDN writes that "once a c l i e n t has entered a contract for s erv i ce s , we be l ieve that frequent contact i s e s s e n t i a l . . . [ s e s s i o n s ] are u t i l i z e d to encourage and support the person through the v a r i e d stages of the contracted ac t ion plan". 4. Follow-up: Once a c l i e n t i s l i n k e d to a t r a i n i n g or employment opportunity , fol low-up counse l l ing i s provided for three months. During t h i s per iod there i s at l eas t monthly contact . 5. Closure: F i l e s are c losed when c l i e n t s 88 are no l o n g e r a b l e t o b e n e f i t from s e r v i c e s . The t a r g e t e d p e r i o d i s t h r e e months although a case can be extended beyond the t h i r d month wit h the ap p r o v a l o f A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l S e r v i c e s . The p r i n c i p l e s o f PSDN have been s t a t e d i n the f o l l o w i n g manner: 1. Each i n d i v i d u a l has d i g n i t y and worth and should be t r e a t e d w i t h r e s p e c t . 2. S e r v i c e s must meet the c l i e n t ' s needs. 3. S e r v i c e s w i l l o n l y succeed when the p r o v i d e r and r e c e i v e r share common g o a l s and j o i n t l y p l a n the a c t i o n . The program has f i v e s t a t e d outcomes: 1. D i r e c t e n t r y i n t o employment. 2. Linkage w i t h t r a i n i n g and e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s . 3. Linkage t o pre-employment t r a i n i n g o p p o r t u n i t i e s . 4. Linkage t o purchased marketing (funded placement agencies) and t r a i n i n g . 5. For those u n s u i t a b l e f o r employment or t r a i n i n g , r e f e r r a l out of the t r a i n i n g and employment system ( c o n f i r m a t i o n o f u n e m p l o y a b i l i t y ) . 89 Impetus for Study The purpose of the study was to explore the populat ion served by the program and to i d e n t i f y and assess the outcomes and impacts of the PSDN program that are important for the c l i e n t . This was to be done wi th in the context of b u i l d i n g a l arger model for a more comprehensive evaluat ion of the program. I t i s an t i c ipa ted that the information obtained from the study w i l l be usefu l to s t a f f and management at PSDN i n t h e i r e f f o r t s to evaluate the effect iveness of the program and to f ine-tune i t (Rossi and Freeman, 1985). The need for the study arose from two sources. Simply s tated , the f i r s t reason was that there had been a conscious e f f o r t on the part of those involved i n the program to approach the s o c i a l ass istance c l i e n t from a f l e x i b l e , i n d i v i d u a l i z e d , profess iona l and supportive perspect ive . There i s a b e l i e f by those involved i n the program that they are helping c l i e n t s i n ways that are often in tang ib le and more d i f f i c u l t to measure than, for instance, those stated i n the f i ve outcomes above, but which may u l t imate ly be as valuable to the c l i e n t s long-term employment and s o c i a l prospects . There was a des ire 90 on the part of the PSDN s t a f f and management, and t h i s researcher, to explore whether t h i s approach was having any impact on p a r t i c i p a n t s . Examples of these types of v a r i a b l e s might be helping b u i l d or r e b u i l d confidence and self-esteem, improved coping s k i l l s and l i f e -management s k i l l s , motivat ion, ass istance i n making career choices or increased awareness of resources and serv i ce s . Therefore there was an attempt made i n the development of the conceptual framework to develop a design which would be sens i t ive to what Mayer and Greenwood r e f e r to as "secondary effects" of the program. These e f fec t s represent "any e f fect that occurs outside the p o l i c y a c t i o n - p o l i c y object ive (independent-dependent var iab le ) causal nexus" (1980:128). Mayer and Greenwood point out that these kinds of e f fects can be p o s i t i v e or negative. The.assumption i n PSDN was that some of the act ions and approaches of the program and counse l lors were having psycho-soc ia l impacts and e f fec t s that are often overlooked i n t y p i c a l evaluat ions . A second, more pragmatic reason, for a c l i e n t evaluat ion was a concern by PSDN that evaluations had been c a r r i e d out by those unfami l iar with the c l i e n t e l e served by the program, and with u n r e a l i s t i c expectations of p o t e n t i a l outcomes. Bogden and Ksander (1980) wri te that "when looking at the ways people go about de f in ing success of s o c i a l in tervent ion , even with those programs that have apparently c l e a r l y stated goals the problem of i n t e r p r e t a t i o n i s even more pronounced" (303). Evaluat ions to date have focused almost e x c l u s i v e l y on the number of c l i e n t s placed i n jobs . PSDN argues that while job placement i s one of a v a r i e t y of outcomes, i t should not be the sole c r i t e r i o n for evaluat ing the program and may not be the most important and meaningful impact from a long-term perspect ive i n terms of s t a b i l i t y of employment and prospects for career development. From t h i s researcher 's standpoint, i t appeared that evaluations to date focused almost exc lus ive ly on the needs of the "system" with l i t t l e a t tent ion being given to the needs of the c l i e n t . This study was p a r t l y an attempt to focus on the l a t t e r , often ignored, element of an employment program evaluat ion . The t h e o r e t i c a l , conceptual and research frameworks out l ined i n the fo l lowing sect ions r e f l e c t s these goals and r a t i o n a l e . Issues to be Researched The focus of the study i s on two areas: 92 1. Wel l -be ing: The purpose of t h i s area i s to explore the s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s ' perceptions of t h e i r wel l -be ing i n terms of needs, problems, employment b a r r i e r s , mot ivat ion, se l f -conf idence , self-esteem, support, and awareness of ava i l ab l e employment- r e l a t e d serv ices and resources. 2. C l i e n t evaluat ion of PSDN: The purpose of t h i s sec t ion i s to explore the c l i e n t s experiences and fee l ings about PSDN i n terms of t h e i r awareness of the program, the r e f e r r a l source, l i k e s and d i s l i k e s , strengths and weaknesses, and general impressions and comments about the program and i t s approach. Rat ionale for Se lec t ion of Problems for Research The Personal Support and Development Network represents a d i f f e r e n t approach i n a s s i s t i n g the unemployed and the long-term unemployed on ass i s tance . The task of t h i s research project was to study the e f fec t s and impacts of the i n d i v i d u a l and voluntary counse l l ing perspect ive of the program. The issues explored i n t h i s study r e f l e c t important elements i n the process of a s s i s t i n g the long-term unemployed back in to the labour force and to p a r t i c i p a t e more f u l l y i n 93 soc ie ty . Despite t h i s , they are often overlooked by policy-makers and program designers. While the scope and l i m i t a t i o n s of t h i s study cannot provide conclus ive evidence, i t may help to "lay the groundwork " i n developing an understanding of some of the v a r i a b l e s that need to be considered as c r i t e r i a for "success" i n a program that deals with the complex and d i f f i c u l t problems created by months or years of unemployment and dependency. Approach of the Study The study was developed around a grounded theory approach, described by Patton (1980) as "induct ive , pragmatic, and h igh ly concrete." Using Crane's (1989) terminology, the approach could a lso be c l a s s i f i e d as " i n t e r p r e t i v e . " Strauss comments that the methodological thrus t of the grounded theory approach i s toward the "development of theory without any commitment to s p e c i f i c kinds of data, l i n e s of research or t h e o r e t i c a l in teres t s" (1987:5). Glaser adds that "the goal of grounded theory i s to generate a theory that accounts for patterns of behaviour which are relevant and problematic for those involved" (1978:4). As discussed, the issues 94 being explored i n t h i s study evolved from a des ire on the part of those involved to develop a bet ter understanding of the e f fec t s of the program on the c l i e n t e l e . In designing the study a conscientious e f f o r t was made by the researcher to design the induct ive framework for f l e x i b i l i t y i n responses but to be somewhat s tructured i n approaching the i ssues . Mi les and Huberman's advise that " . . . i t i s a good idea to s t a r t with some general research ques t ions . . .They need not overly cons tra in the study; ra ther , they allow you to get c l e a r about what, i n the general domain, i s of the most interes t" (1984:35). The general research questions h igh l ighted for t h i s study were c l i e n t psycho-soc ia l we l l -be ing , access to labour market information, support, and how these were re la ted to the c l i e n t ' s percept ion and evaluat ion of PSDN. For a study of t h i s type, i t was decided that there should be as much room as poss ib le for important dimensions to emerge from the data. The intent was to go into the research open to several poss ib le impacts and e f fec ts that the program might be having on those p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the program. The fo l lowing induct ive framework and goa l - free research design r e f l e c t these 95 goals . Knowledge-Building Function The study was designed to f u l f i l an exploratory-d e s c r i p t i v e funct ion . The e f fec ts and impacts being explored are seldom studied and poorly understood. The focus of t h i s projec t was to gain a pre l iminary understanding of the program's impact on c l i e n t s and to "stimulate the development of concepts, hypotheses, and theories" (Reid and Smith, 1981:67). Mayer and Greenwood wri te that " i f the analyst i s unable to i d e n t i f y the p o l i c y v a r i a b l e s that are missing from the conceptual framework, or succeeds i n i d e n t i f y i n g only g lobal concepts, the object ive of research may be to d iscover the v a r i a b l e s or to c l a r i f y these concepts" (1980:150). The exploratory purposes of the study allowed the researcher to be f l e x i b l e i n h i s methodology and to shape the study around the c l i e n t s , and t h e i r p r i o r i t i e s , rather than v i c e - v e r s a . The exploratory approach was a lso an e f f ec t i ve and e f f i c i e n t methodology for confront ing the problem as presented by PSDN. The study deviates from a "pure" exploratory evaluat ion of the program with the added dimension of 96 the wel l -be ing of c l i e n t s . The r a t i o n a l e for t h i s dec i s ion was that the wel l -be ing of the unemployed on ass is tance w i l l have an e f fec t on t h e i r experiences and evaluat ion of the PSDN program. Franz Boas argues that " i f i t i s our serious purpose to understand the thoughts of a people the whole analys i s must be based on t h e i r concepts, not ours" (Patton, 1980: 307). This could be expanded to argue that i f a researcher (or a program developer or p o l i c y maker) i s to understand the e f fec ts of a program there must be some l e v e l of understanding of the populat ion being targeted. This i s p a r t i c u l a r l y true of the unemployed on s o c i a l ass is tance , a group held i n low esteem and poorly understood by the majori ty of soc ie ty and by those who often develop programs and serv ices "for" them rather than "with" them. The dec i s ion to include a p r i m a r i l y d e s c r i p t i v e element of the study was to set the context for the evaluat ion to fol low and a lso an attempt to share the fee l ings of being unemployed on ass istance i n our soc ie ty from the perspect ive of those who are experiencing i t . Conceptual Framework of Research Evolv ing from the goals and ra t iona le s of the study 97 as o u t l i n e d , the purpose of t h i s e v a l u a b i l i t y study was to describe and understand the PSDN program i n terms of the p a r t i c i p a n t s "soc ia l r e a l i t y . " Rossi and Freeman state that : . . . the intent i s to end up with a d e s c r i p t i o n of the program as i t e x i s t s , to provide understanding of the d i f ferences between how i t i s formally p i c tured and how i t i s a c t u a l l y conducted, and to expla in the d i f ferences i n the way i t i s perceived and valued by the various p a r t i c i p a n t s involved. (p. 90) Patton adds that the " . . . evaluators task i s to generate program theory from h o l i s t i c data gathered through n a t u r a l i s t i c inquiry for the purposes of he lp ing program s t a f f and dec i s ion makers understand how the program funct ions , why i t functions as i t does, and the way i n which the impacts /consequences/ outcomes of the program flow from program a c t i v i t i e s " (1980:81). Re f l ec t ing the induct ive approach and the exp lora tory -descr ip t ive purposes for the study, the evaluat ive strategy developed from the "goal-free" model out l ined by Patton (1980). The advantage of t h i s model was that i t allowed the researcher to be as recept ive as poss ib le to the "secondary" impacts and e f fec t s of the 98 program. The goa l - free model requires evaluators to "suspend judgement about what i t i s the program i s t r y i n g to do and to focus instead on f ind ing out what i t i s that a c t u a l l y happens i n the program . . . t h e evaluator thus can be open to whatever data emerges from the phenomena of the program i t s e l f " (Patton, 1980:57). Patton out l ines four reasons for a goa l - free e v a l u a b i l i t y model, a l l app l i cab le and relevant to t h i s research p r o j e c t : 1. To avoid the r i s k of narrowly studying stated program object ives and thereby missing important unant ic ipated outcomes. 2. To remove the negative connotations attached to the discovery of unant ic ipated effects-"The whole language of "side effect" or "secondary effect" or even "unanticipated effect" tended to be a put down of what might we l l be the c r u c i a l achievement, e s p e c i a l l y i n terms of new p r i o r i t i e s . " 3. To e l iminate the perceptual biases introduced in to an evaluat ion by knowledge of goals . 4. To maintain evaluator o b j e c t i v i t y and independence through goa l - free condit ions (Patton, 1980:55-56). 99 Relat ionship of Study to Research There has been l i t t l e research and evaluat ion of s o c i a l ass istance workfare models i n Canada (Muszynski, 1987) . The S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto (1989) argues that despite the large amount of funding spent on programs for labour market entrants and re-entrants t h e i r economic impact i s not c l e a r . Even l e ss i s known about the psycho-soc ia l e f fec t s and impacts of these programs. Studies i n the United States (Gueron, 1986, 1987a, 1987b) have tended to be based on the p r i o r i t i e s , needs, and perceptions of those implementing the programs with l i t t l e concern about what the consumers of the product might see as important or e f f e c t i v e . Many of the reports and studies c a r r i e d out i n the 1980's c r i t i c i z e d the lack of services and supports a v a i l a b l e for s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s (Manitoba, 1983: S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee, 1988; H a l i f a x , 1988) . Recent reports have noted that there are even fewer programs and services designed s p e c i f i c a l l y to address the needs of the long-term unemployed on ass is tance (Socia l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto, 1989; Canadian Counci l on S o c i a l Development, 1989) . The study by the Canadian Counci l on S o c i a l 100 Development points out that the programs that have been developed for t h i s group have tended to "cream" the most employable candidates "to demonstrate ear ly success i n p l a c i n g S . A . R . c l i e n t s . . . b u t many with greater support needs have yet to be reached" (1989:2). Davidson et a l . (1987), The S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee (1988), and Gueron (1986, 1987a, 1987b) point out that programs for the long-term unemployed on ass is tance , i f they are to be e f f e c t i v e , must take a long-term perspect ive and be targeted s p e c i f i c a l l y for t h i s group. The S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto (1989) argues that programs for t h i s group, and other marginal ized groups, requires intens ive counse l l ing and high r a t i o s of s t a f f to p a r t i c i p a n t . This ra i se s a dilemma i n developing e f f ec t i ve s trateg ies as "programs which have the greatest impact often demonstrate the l eas t spectacular r e s u l t s because t h e i r focus i s on q u a l i t y rather than quanti ty (Davidson et a l . , 1987:10). The complex problems faced by the long-term unemployed, therefore , necess i tate d i f f e r e n t c r i t e r i a for "success." Despite the need for a more comprehensive and h o l i s t i c evaluat ion c r i t e r i a for programs designed for the long-term unemployed on s o c i a l ass istance there i s c l e a r l y a 101 lack of research i n t h i s area. I t may be that "program evaluat ion i s i n i t s infancy" (SARC, 1988:209), the d i f f i c u l t y of e s tab l i sh ing and quant i fy ing the operat ional d e f i n i t i o n of "success", or because i t i s simply a r e f l e c t i o n , again, of the low status of the unemployed and s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s i n our soc ie ty . At l eas t part of the purpose of t h i s study i s to address t h i s issue and to generate some a l t e r n a t i v e v a r i a b l e s other than those t y p i c a l l y used to evaluate employment programs for the unemployed on ass i s tance . As out l ined i n the l i t e r a t u r e review, there has been a trend across Canada i n recent years toward a more ac t ive approach towards s o c i a l ass i s tance . Other than a few i s o l a t e d and poorly evaluated attempts i n Canada, there has been l i t t l e implementation of the emergent concepts and ideas associated with that t rend . The studies i n the United States have suggested that workfare approaches can work but they are slow and long-term investments. PSDN can be seen as an example of a "soft" approach to workfare, s i m i l a r i n approach to the Massachusetts model. PSDN provides a unique opportunity for evaluat ing and exploring the impact of a "soft" approach of an innovative program within the Canadian 102 context. In many respects PSDN can also be seen as f u l f i l l i n g the "opportunity planner" r o l e out l ined i n the T r a n s i t i o n s report (SARC, 1988). The opportunity planner concept i s to j o i n t l y develop a plan that w i l l "take in to cons iderat ion the r e c i p i e n t s long-term goals and asp ira t ions and w i l l i d e n t i f y the a c t i v i t i e s , s erv ices , or programs that might enable the r e c i p i e n t to a t t a i n h i s or her personal goals" (SARC, 1988:206). PSDN would appear to be put t ing t h i s concept i n p r a c t i c e although not wi th in the same s t r u c t u r a l context out l ined by T r a n s i t i o n s . The opportunity planning concept has been advocated from a v a r i e t y of sources but i t s impact and ef fect iveness i s poorly understood. Again t h i s study was designed to generate some pre l iminary theories about the concept. In summary, the e f for t s of t h i s study explore areas that have received l i t t l e a t tent ion from the research community, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n Canada. Although the general problem area being examined i n t h i s projec t r e f l e c t large investments of e f f o r t and c a p i t a l there i s c l e a r l y a lack of an e f f e c t i v e evaluat ive model and a lack of research. Even i n the United States where there have been more 103 attempts to study workfare concepts i n p r a c t i c e , the evaluat ions have been economically dr iven and have tended not to explore the psycho-soc ia l elements being studied i n t h i s research p r o j e c t . The parameters, goals , time-frame and l i m i t e d resources of t h i s study necess i tated a conceptual and research framework that was q u a l i t a t i v e , f l e x i b l e , and uncontro l l ed . Although the research f i t s we l l with the purposes of the study, i t i s l i m i t e d i n the amount of g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y that i s pos s ib l e . The f indings and impl ica t ions of t h i s projec t can only be suggested, they can not be demonstrated with any sort of accuracy. I t i s hoped that the ideas and theories st imulated by the projec t w i l l be tested on a larger scale at some future date. 104 Chapter IV RESEARCH DESIGN Methodological Or ienta t ion The study u t i l i z e s a q u a l i t a t i v e approach. The q u a l i t a t i v e approach i s intended to understand s o c i a l phenomena u t i l i z i n g techniques of in-depth , open-ended interviews and personal observation (Patton, 1980:19). Silverman advocates the interview approach for c e r t a i n research problems because "interview data d i sp lay c u l t u r a l r e a l i t i e s which are ne i ther biased nor accurate , but simply "real" (1985:157). Douglas writes that "direct observation of things i n t h e i r natura l s tate (uncontrolled) i s the primary bas is of a l l t ruth" (1976:12). John Lofland has out l ined four elements i n c o l l e c t i n g q u a l i t a t i v e data, a l l of which are app l i cab le to the purposes of t h i s study: 1. The q u a l i t a t i v e methodologist must get c lose enough to the people and s i t u a t i o n being studied to understand the depth and d e t a i l s of what goes on. 2. The q u a l i t a t i v e methodologist aims at capturing what i s a c t u a l l y taking place and what people a c t u a l l y 105 say: the perceived fac t s . 3. Q u a l i t a t i v e data cons i s t of a great deal of pure d e s c r i p t i o n of people, a c t i v i t i e s and i n t e r a c t i o n s . 3. Q u a l i t a t i v e data cons i s t of d i r e c t quotations from people (Patton, 1980:36). There were several other reasons for the dec i s ion to u t i l i z e a q u a l i t a t i v e methodological framework. A primary reason i s that q u a l i t a t i v e procedures were appropriate to the design of the study and i t i s the methodology usua l ly employed for e v a l u a b i l i t y research (Patton, 1980; Rossi and Freeman, 1985). Q u a l i t a t i v e methods have a lso been i d e n t i f i e d as the most common procedure for studies explor ing "secondary" e f fec ts of program intervent ion (Rutman, 1977). Mi les and Huberman (1984) add that q u a l i t a t i v e data preserve chronolog ica l flow and assess l o c a l c a u s a l i t y . Another advantage of the q u a l i t a t i v e techniques i s that i t i s a s o l i d methodology for accentuating poss ib le i n d i v i d u a l i z e d e f fec t s of programs l i k e PSDN (Patton, 1980). An important cons iderat ion for the dec i s ion to u t i l i z e a q u a l i t a t i v e paradigm over a quant i ta t ive one i s that the depth and d e t a i l of the information i s more appropriate for explor ing q u a l i t y as opposed to quant i ty . 106 PSDN i s emphasizing an approach based on q u a l i t y and the study was interes ted i n examining i f t h i s approach was having any impact on the program. Patton (1980) points out that : . . . q u a l i t y has to do with nuance, with d e t a i l , with the subtle and unique things that make a d i f ference between the points on a standardized s c a l e . . . T h i s i s not a question of i n t e r v a l versus o r d i n a l s c a l i n g , but one of meaning...what do programs mean to p a r t i c i p a n t s . . . w h a t i s the q u a l i t y of the experience. (p. 74) The complexity of the issues being researched are a l so best confronted from a q u a l i t a t i v e perspect ive . Strauss writes that a q u a l i t a t i v e grounded approach bet ter captures the "complexity of r e a l i t y (phenomena) we study. . . [and makes] convincing sense of i t " (1987:10) . For the purposes and goals of t h i s study, the d e t a i l e d and in-depth information that was required could only have been obtained from a q u a l i t a t i v e approach. Another pragmatic cons iderat ion for the q u a l i t a t i v e approach was that i t was perhaps the only way that the information could be generated. Some, indeed most, of the subjects who were interviewed and added v i t a l 107 information to t h i s study probably would not have responded as wel l to a more quant i ta t ive approach u t i l i z i n g a quest ionnaire approach. Many of the respondents had minimal education and might have had d i f f i c u l t i e s completing a purely quant i ta t ive study. The open-ended interview format of t h i s study was designed to allow people to respond i n t h e i r own terms (Patton, 1980). The f i n a l , and less pragmatic, reason for the d e c i s i o n to employ a q u a l i t a t i v e approach was simply a preference on the part of t h i s researcher for t h i s type of methodology. I t seemed obvious that "truly" to understand the experiences of unemployment, s o c i a l ass i s tance , and PSDN, the study had to be based on a sharing of these experiences. Q u a l i t a t i v e methodology presented a more "humanistic and personal" approach to studying the problem presented (Patton, 1980). Derek P h i l l i p s states that "only by. becoming involved i n what we are studying can we f i x upon the th ing i t s e l f , become aware of i t , experience i t and obtain "knowledge of" as wel l as knowledge about" (Reid & Smith, 1981:89). In re trospect , despite the labour- intens ive nature of q u a l i t a t i v e research, the dec i s ion to u t i l i z e t h i s type 108 of approach was a r i c h and rewarding experience for t h i s researcher prov id ing ins ights and experiences not poss ib le with a quant i ta t ive design. Control Over Phenomena to be Studied The research design u t i l i z e d for t h i s study was quasi-experimental and evaluated PSDN, as an in tervent ion , on those p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the program. Using the paradigm of Douglas (1976), the research could be c l a s s i f i e d as non-part ic ipant f i e l d research u t i l i z i n g in-depth interviews with a f l e x i b l e c h e c k l i s t s of quest ions. Employing the framework developed by Reid and Smith (1981) the research design could be described as an uncontro l l ed , s ing le group experiment employing a bas ic time ser ies (A-B) design for explanatory-d e s c r i p t i v e purposes using non-probabi l i ty sampling techniques and q u a l i t a t i v e methods. The study u t i l i z e d an A-B design, with p a r a l l e l questions i n December, 1989 and March, 1990. Three months i s the targeted length of involvement for c l i e n t s of PSDN, although some attend for shorter or longer durat ions , depending on circumstances. The study was designed to explore the wel l -be ing of c l i e n t s and to 109 evaluate the c l i en t s* perceptions of the PSDN program at two d i f f e r e n t points i n time: when they f i r s t entered the program and three months l a t e r . Despite the l i m i t a t i o n s of the A-B design i n i s o l a t i n g "treatment e f f ec t s ," i t was chosen for i t s f e a s i b i l i t y wi th in the constra ints of the Masters of S o c i a l Work program and i t s a p p l i c a b i l i t y to the exp lora tory -descr ip t ive knowledge b u i l d i n g funct ion of the study (Reid et a l . , 1981). The primary object ive of the study was to explore and describe the c l i e n t s ' perceptions of the program and to contr ibute to the b u i l d i n g of a more comprehensive evaluat ion of the program. Reid et a l . (1981) suggest that the uncontro l led case study i s e f f ec t i ve for t h i s kind of a study and: . . . c a n serve an important funct ion i n pre l iminary t e s t s of serv ice approaches . . . i t can be used to generate hypotheses about these e f f e c t s . . . a n d can provide s trongly suggestive, i f not persuasive , evidence about the accomplishments of service" (p.95) 110 Sampling Design The non-probabi l i ty sampling design followed a cohort of PSDN c l i e n t s over three months. The e f f o r t s of the sampling process were to access twenty to t h i r t y c l i e n t s who were beginning the program and to obtain as heterogeneous a sample as poss ib l e . The sampling design could be categorized as a maximum v a r i a t i o n sampling strategy (Patton, 1980). U t i l i z a t i o n of t h i s sampling strategy allowed the researcher "to more accurate ly describe the v a r i a t i o n i n the program and to understand v a r i a t i o n s i n experiences" (Patton, 1980: 102). The strategy for se l ec t ing and r e c r u i t i n g p o t e n t i a l subjects was es tabl i shed i n a conference c a l l between the s t a f f and management of PSDN and t h i s researcher i n November, 1989. I t was decided that the best way to proceed would be for the PSDN counsel lors to discuss the study, and p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the study, with p o t e n t i a l subjects during the course of t h e i r f i r s t or second interview with t h e i r c l i e n t s . During the face- to - face interviews counsel lors would out l ine the projec t and s tress that p a r t i c i p a t i o n was s t r i c t l y vo luntary . Those p o t e n t i a l subjects who expressed an i n t e r e s t i n p a r t i c i p a t i n g were then placed on a l i s t . In December, 111 1989, the researcher contacted those on the l i s t to discuss the study, and p o t e n t i a l p a r t i c i p a t i o n , i n more d e t a i l . Po ten t ia l subjects were again advised that p a r t i c i p a t i o n was voluntary and that they were free to withdraw at any time. I f p o t e n t i a l subjects were s t i l l in teres ted i n p a r t i c i p a t i n g , an interview was arranged. The purposive, non-probabi l i ty sampling strategy u t i l i z e d for t h i s projec t i s the most appropriate and pre ferred choice for a study of t h i s nature. Reid et a l . s tate that non-probabi l i ty sampling designs are appropriate for exp lora tory -descr ip t ive s tudies and that a "sample may be se lected according to which source of data w i l l provide the most useful information most r e a d i l y . . . I n s i g h t f u l analyzes of one or a few cases may take precedence over an attempt to secure uniform measures" (1981:69). Sample Size and Heterogeneity The sampling strategy that was u t i l i z e d l i m i t s the genera l i za t ions that can be made from the study. I t i s d i f f i c u l t to know the representativeness of the sample compared to the populat ion of those i n the PSDN program or the more general populat ion of the unemployed on 112 s o c i a l ass i s tance . A major problem i n attempting to randomly sample was that there was no wait ing l i s t so a comprehensive l i s t was v i r t u a l l y impossible to generate. As w e l l , the time l i m i t a t i o n s and the fact that the study was being c a r r i e d out i n a d i f f e r e n t province made a random sample unfeas ib le . PSDN records show that 301 new f i l e s were opened i n November, 1989, and 255 i n December, 1989. C a l c u l a t i n g 2/3 of November's f i l e openings and 1/3 of December's, a sampling populat ion of approximately 286 could be estimated. I t i s d i f f i c u l t to estimate how many of these p o t e n t i a l subjects were approached by PSDN or how many may have been asked but refused to p a r t i c i p a t e . The researcher interviewed 24 i n d i v i d u a l s i n December, 1989. The names were derived from a l i s t of 47 c o l l e c t e d by the PSDN organizat ion from approximately November 10 through December 8, 1989. Of the 47 p o t e n t i a l subjects , the researcher was able to contact approximately 34. Five persons who could be reached chose not to p a r t i c i p a t e . Appointments were arranged with 29 p o t e n t i a l subjects , 5 of whom d i d not show. The December, 1989, sample was comprised of twelve males and twelve females. The sample was d i v e r s i f i e d i n 113 age, m a r i t a l s tatus , PSDN counsel lors and Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Service o f f i c e of o r i g i n . In the March, 1990, follow-up interviews, contact was es tabl i shed with a l l the o r i g i n a l p a r t i c i p a n t s (or r e l a t i v e s ) but only 19 i n d i v i d u a l s were re- interviewed (10 females and 9 males) . One male was no longer r e s i d i n g i n Edmonton, two females and one male chose not to p a r t i c i p a t e i n the second sess ion, and one male f a i l e d to show for several scheduled appointments. Timing; of Data C o l l e c t i o n As discussed prev ious ly , two sets of interviews were u t i l i z e d for t h i s study. The ra t iona l e to interview twice was to study c l i e n t perceptions of the program over time. There was a concern by PSDN that the program's impact was l e ss e f f ec t ive over time. The purpose of the data c o l l e c t i o n methodology u t i l i z e d was to explore, contras t , and map-out d i f ferences and s i m i l a r i t i e s i n c l i e n t perceptions at the beginning of the program as compared to three months into the program. The dual observation approach would hopeful ly help those involved with PSDN i d e n t i f y strengths and weaknesses i n the approach and processes of the program. 114 Data C o l l e c t i o n Data regarding c l i e n t wel l -be ing and evaluat ion of PSDN were based p r i m a r i l y on the two in-depth interviews c a r r i e d out i n December, 1989 and March, 1990 (refer to appendix A for interview guide, and appendix B for interview consent form). The interview format was chosen because of i t s capacity to e l i c i t large amounts of information and i n greater depth than other methods and was p a r t i c u l a r l y useful for the complex and r e l a t i v e l y unexplored issues being studied i n t h i s projec t (Reid et a l . , 1981). In addi t ion to the interviews, information for the study was a lso gleaned from the f i l e s of subjects and from observations of the PSDN o f f i c e s and informal d iscuss ions with s t a f f . The evolut ion of the interview guide took place over four months. The questions concerning the evaluat ion sec t ion are f a i r l y standard. The questions for the w e l l -being sec t ion , however, were more complicated. The researcher was s p e c i f i c about the general t o p i c areas of psycho-soc ia l e f f ec t s , employment b a r r i e r s , and awareness of a v a i l a b l e employment-related services and resources that were to be broadly covered by the questions under 115 the wel l -be ing sec t ion . As w e l l , the primary concern of the pro jec t was the evaluat ion and the researcher d i d not want the wel l -be ing sect ion to degenerate in to unfocussed d i scuss ion of l i t t l e empir ica l value . The f i n a l questions r e f l e c t an attempt to keep the questions r e l a t i v e to p a r t i c u l a r issues while s t i l l t r y i n g to keep enough room for f l e x i b i l i t y . In re trospect , the instrument and approach u t i l i z e d i n the study balanced the concerns and worked wel l i n most cases. The researcher b a s i c a l l y u t i l i z e d an "interview guide approach" although there was an e f f o r t , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the evaluat ive sec t ion , to take a more standardized and s tructured approach i n order to maximize the comparabi l i ty of r e s u l t s . Patton character izes the interview guide technique as a format where "topics and issues to be covered are spec i f i ed i n advance, i n out l ine form: interviewer decides sequence and working of questions i n the course of the interview" (1980:206). The advantage of t h i s approach for t h i s study was that i t covered c e r t a i n areas but allowed for as wide a v a r i a t i o n i n responses as poss ib l e . The data c o l l e c t i o n techniques u t i l i z e d i n t h i s study are open to several concerns. A ser ious issue 116 g o i n g i n t o the p r o j e c t was " r e s e a r c h e r e f f e c t s . " M i l e s and Huberman p o i n t out " that i n f o r m a n t s w i l l t y p i c a l l y c r a f t t h e i r re sponses i n such a way as t o p r o t e c t t h e i r s e l f - i n t e r e s t s " (1984:233) . T h i s was v iewed as a s e r i o u s c o n c e r n i n t h i s s t u d y which d e a l t w i t h i n d i v i d u a l s who had l i t t l e t o g a i n from the s tudy and were s u s p i c i o u s o f any i n t r u s i o n i n t h e i r l i v e s . A c o n s c i o u s e f f o r t was made by t h i s r e s e a r c h e r t o d i s a s s o c i a t e h i m s e l f from b o t h A l b e r t a F a m i l y and S o c i a l S e r v i c e s and PSDN. A c o n s c i o u s a t tempt was a l s o made by the r e s e a r c h e r t o r e i n f o r c e h i s r o l e as a s t u d e n t , whether s p e c i f i c a l l y s a y i n g so o r i n d r e s s and mannerisms. A second s t r a t e g y f o r r e d u c i n g the r e s e a r c h e r ' s e f f e c t was, as much as p o s s i b l e , t o c a r r y out i n t e r v i e w s i n the home o f the s u b j e c t s . T h i s was done w i t h the i n t e n t i o n , a g a i n , o f r e d u c i n g t h e " t h r e a t q u o t i e n t " ( M i l e s and Huberman, 1984). The r e s e a r c h e r ' s approach may have been e f f e c t i v e as s e v e r a l s u b j e c t s open ly v o i c e d " d i s s i d e n t " o p i n i o n s ( n e g a t i v e about PSDN). The f a c t t h a t , i n g e n e r a l , most p e o p l e were p o s i t i v e about PSDN may a l s o r e f l e c t f e e l i n g s o f t r u s t i n the program. I t c o u l d be argued t h a t t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s may have seen i t i n t h e i r b e s t i n t e r e s t s t o be f r a n k w i t h the r e s e a r c h e r . E s s e n t i a l l y , t h e r e s e a r c h e r 117 e f f e c t i s s u e was d e a l t w i t h by being as open and r e l a x e d as p o s s i b l e . T h i s r e s e a r c h e r i s comfortable w i t h the degree t o which the answers of respondents were t r u t h f u l and r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f t h e i r t r u e f e e l i n g s . The p o i n t should a l s o be made t h a t i f c l i e n t s had l i t t l e t o g a i n from p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the study, they a l s o had l i t t l e t o l o s e , thereby r e d u c i n g the impetus t o "d e c e i v e " the r e s e a r c h e r ( M i l e s e t a l . , 1984). The qu e s t i o n s on w e l l - b e i n g can not be seen as t h r e a t e n i n g and most p a r t i c i p a n t s were i n PSDN by c h o i c e so they had l i t t l e t o g a i n o r l o s e by f e e d i n g the r e s e a r c h e r what they p e r c e i v e d he might want t o hear. Data A n a l y s i s The p r o c e s s u t i l i z e d t o analyze the q u a l i t a t i v e data f o l l o w e d the g u i d e l i n e s o u t l i n e d by S t r a u s s (1987) but was adapted t o the parameters of t h i s study. P r i o r t o the a c t u a l i n t e r v i e w s , the r e s e a r c h e r was determined t o maximize the accurateness and r e p r e s e n t a t i v e n e s s o f the i n f o r m a t i o n g i v e n by the s u b j e c t s . A m u l t i - f a c e t e d s t r a t e g y was developed t o f u l f i l t h i s g o a l . The a n a l y s i s stage began w i t h the f i r s t c o n t a c t between the r e s e a r c h e r and s u b j e c t (Crane, 1989). With the p e r m i s s i o n o f 118 p a r t i c i p a n t s interviews were audio-taped which allowed the researcher to concentrate on the d i s cus s ion . While the interview was i n progress, the researcher noted ideas, themes and concepts as they emerged. As soon as poss ib le a f t er the completion of the interview, the researcher would combine the rough notes with any o v e r a l l impressions st imulated by the interview. Within twenty-four hours the researcher would l i s t e n to the f u l l audio-tape and summarize the interviews and note any re levant information or quotes that might have been missed i n the " i n i t i a l impression" note-taking stage. The information was then placed i n a f i l e and the audio-tapes were sent to be t r a n s c r i b e d . Throughout the data gathering process, ideas or observations noted by the researcher were compiled i n a separate f i l e . These memos played an important r o l e i n not ing v a r i a b l e s and trends for development i n l a t e r stages of the a n a l y t i c a l process. A f t e r the interviews were completed, the next stage involved ca tegor iz ing and coding the data . The pre l iminary process involved a synthes iz ing of the rough notes and memos that had evolved out of the interviews. The rough ideas and i n i t i a l impressions that had emerged 119 during the interviews were out l ined and categorized under the broad top ic areas of the study. This "note-memo synthesis" was to serve as a "template" throughout the data ana lys i s process (refer to appendix C for an example of the template) . The template was to be an i n t e g r a l par t of the ana lys i s and was constantly expanding and c o l l a p s i n g as the ana lys i s progressed. When the typed t r a n s c r i p t s of the interviews were rece ived , a c lo ser examination of the data was undertaken u t i l i z i n g the approach advocated by Strauss along with the template as a guide. An open-coding l i n e - b y - l i n e ana lys i s was done to i s o l a t e "indicators" (refer to appendix D for examples of the open-coding process ) . As i n d i c a t o r s and "second l e v e l codes" were extracted from the raw data they were added to the template. During t h i s stage the template provided a method to i d e n t i f y s i g n i f i c a n t and r e c u r r i n g trends and for further ordering the data into higher l eve l s of abs trac t ion . An example of an important element that emerged from the data was the four p a r t i c i p a n t categories (Reactive, P r o - a c t i v e , R e s t r i c t e d , and Reluctant) that were u t i l i z e d as the framework for the ana lys i s of the f ind ings . The p a r t i c i p a n t categories w i l l be discussed i n more d e t a i l 120 i n chapter f i v e . Another example of a v a r i a b l e that emerged unexpectedly from the data was the category of "Alberta Family and S o c i a l Serv ices ." Although Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Services had not been considered i n the conceptual izat ion process, i t c l e a r l y emerged from the data as an important fac tor that needed to be included i n the f ind ings . The next step was to summarize the raw interview data in to an abstracted form conducive to a more s tructured comparative a n a l y s i s . The template was now r e f l e c t i n g the guide l ines for appropriate i n d i c a t o r s under each category. Using the information on the template the researcher was able to break up the data under several t op ic headings: e f fects of unemployment and s o c i a l ass i s tance , problems and b a r r i e r s being faced, present support network, kinds of programs for the unemployed on s o c i a l ass istance that c l i e n t s would l i k e to see, how many services and resources c l i e n t s were aware of, f ee l ings about Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Serv ices , r e f e r r a l to PSDN, and PSDN eva luat ion . The abstracted interviews are found i n appendix E . In conclus ion , while the data ana lys i s may seem 121 complex, the approach evolved i n t u i t i v e l y as the study p r o g r e s s e d . S t a r t i n g from the framework o u t l i n e d by S t r a u s s , the template concept served a complementary f u n c t i o n f o r o r d e r i n g , v e r i f y i n g and c r o s s - c h e c k i n g the dat a . To summarize, as idea s and t r e n d s emerged throughout the p r o j e c t they were logged and o r g a n i z e d i n t o a computer f i l e . The computer f i l e f u n c t i o n e d as an expandable "template" and served as a g u i d e l i n e throughout the a n a l y s i s . As i n d i c a t o r s , codes and c a t e g o r i e s emerged from the data they were t e s t e d a g a i n s t , and added t o , the template. The template then served as a framework f o r p u t t i n g q u e s t i o n s t o the data. P r e s e n t a t i o n o f R e s u l t s The r e s u l t s are presented f o l l o w i n g the g e n e r a l framework o u t l i n e d by Patton (19 80) but have been adapted t o f i t the conc e p t u a l framework of the study. The f i n d i n g s have been d i v i d e d i n t o two s e c t i o n s . The f i r s t s e c t i o n p r e s e n t s the g e n e r a l p a t t e r n s themes and t r e n d s t h a t emerged from the data. The second s e c t i o n breaks down the data i n t o c a t e g o r i e s , based on respondent p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n PSDN. The s t y l e o f p r e s e n t a t i o n t h a t has been u t i l i z e d i s 122 s i m i l a r to the "grounded theory s t y l e of a n a l y t i c presentation" discussed, and u t i l i z e d , by Strauss (1987) . The pat terns , tendencies, themes, and trends that emerged from the data have been organized and c lus tered i n categories and typologies rather than a case by case format (Patton, 1980). Strauss writes that i n t h i s s t y l e of presentat ion: . . .case studies are constructed not very d i f f e r e n t l y than by most q u a l i t a t i v e researchers . The p r i n c i p a l d i f f erence from many of t h e i r s i s the densi ty of conceptual ana lys i s and the t ightness with which the presentat ion hangs together. In general , however, because t h i s a n a l y t i c mode uses t h e o r e t i c a l sampling and constant comparisons so extens ive ly , i t p r a c t i t i o n e r s tend less to write case s tudies . . .They wri te about phenomena more g e n e r a l l y . . . (p. 218-219) E t h i c a l Issues The research was designed to present minimal r i s k s to subjects and, i n some respects , could be viewed as b e n e f i c i a l i n that the subjects were presented an unique opportunity to express t h e i r fee l ings about t h e i r 123 s i t u a t i o n . The study was s t r i c t l y voluntary and subjects were given several opportunit ies to withdraw from the study. A l l p a r t i c i p a n t s reviewed and signed the interview consent form (see appendix B) and were informed about the projec t as much as poss ib l e . The interview questions are perceived by t h i s researcher as non-threatening but a l l subjects were informed of t h e i r r i g h t not to answer s p e c i f i c questions. The non-threatening perspect ive i s re inforced by the fact that no subject chose not to answer any questions. Interviews were taped with permission of the subjects and for the most par t , t h i s was not seen as a problem. One person chose not to be taped i n the December interviews and two chose not be taped i n the March interviews. The researcher requested that PSDN submit a wr i t ten consent of the p r o j e c t . I t i s included i n appendix F . The " C e r t i f i c a t e of Approval" from The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia Behavioural Screening Committee for Research and Other Studies Involving Human Subjects i s included i n appendix G. 124 Chapter V FINDINGS Introduct ion Two a n a l y t i c constructs are u t i l i z e d to organize the data for presentat ion . The f i r s t i s t ime. As discussed i n the "research design" chapter, the r a t i o n a l e to interview twice was to study c l i e n t perceptions of PSDN over a per iod of three months. Three months i s the targeted length of program involvement. The purpose was to explore and contrast d i f ferences and s i m i l a r i t i e s i n the perceptions of respondents i n December, when i n d i v i d u a l s were s t a r t i n g the program, and again i n March, when they had been i n the program for three months. The second a n a l y t i c a l category i s the d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n of p a r t i c i p a t i o n of respondents i n the PSDN program. This construct was not incorporated into the o r i g i n a l conceptual izat ion of the study but rather was derived from the data . As the ana lys i s of the f indings progressed, i t become c l e a r that v a r i a b l e s l i k e age, sex, gender or cu l ture were unable to expla in the 125 r e s u l t s . The data suggest that there were four bas ic respondent p a r t i c i p a t i o n categories: React ive , Pro-a c t i v e , Res t r i c t ed and Reluctant . Reactive p a r t i c i p a n t s were respondents who came into the program with few ideas or plans about t h e i r future but with high l e v e l s of motivation and some l e v e l of capac i ty . This group u t i l i z e d a v a r i e t y of PSDN's serv ices and tended to p a r t i c i p a t e i n the program extens ive ly . The commonalities for t h i s group were an openness to change, motivat ion, perceived needs and problems, an understanding of what PSDN could and could not do, and a wi l l ingness on the part of A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services to fund or support dec i s ions . The Pro-ac t ive p a r t i c i p a n t s had s i m i l a r commonalities but were more s e l f - d i r e c t e d and, un l ike the reac t ive group, came into the program with a bas ic framework for change already i n p lace . In contrast to the reac t ive group, these respondents drew what they needed from the program rather than r e l y i n g so much on the program to i n i t i a t e the change process . The Res t r i c t ed group were middle-aged men with complex and i n t e r - r e l a t e d employment b a r r i e r s and problems. These respondents were motivated but t h e i r 126 capaci ty for change was questionable and t h e i r opportuni t ies to change were severely r e s t r i c t e d by a lack of re levant services and support. Reluctant p a r t i c i p a n t s d id not understand the purpose of the program and p a r t i c i p a t i o n was l i m i t e d to "going through the motions." This group was quite d iverse but tended to have opportunit ies and the capaci ty for making changes but, for a v a r i e t y of reasons, chose not t o . This group seemed to be the l eas t motivated (for d i f f e r i n g reasons) of the four groups. With the exception of the Res tr i c t ed group (which was made up of a l l males, although of d i f f e r e n t ages) there was a d i v e r s i t y and heterogeneity i n each category. An example of t h i s d i v e r s i t y can be demonstrated i n the Reactive group which was composed of three males and f ive females. One of the males was f i f t y - f o u r years o l d , married with no c h i l d r e n at home and a grade twelve education; one was t h i r t y - o n e years o l d , l i v i n g common-law with one c h i l d , and had a grade eleven, education; the t h i r d male was twenty-nine, s ing le and handicapped ( b l i n d ) . One of the females was t h i r t y years o l d , s ing le with one c h i l d and had a bachelors degree i n education; one was o r i e n t a l , t h i r t y - f i v e , s ing l e , no c h i l d r e n , and 127 a grade eleven education; one was twenty-two, s i n g l e , no c h i l d r e n , and was f u n c t i o n a l l y i l l i t e r a t e with a grade s ix education; one was t h i r t y , l i v i n g common-law with one c h i l d and a grade nine education; the f i n a l female respondent was a t h i r t y - f i v e year o ld divorced year o ld nat ive woman with two teen-age c h i l d r e n and a grade twelve education. General Issues The r e s u l t s of the study s trongly support the l i t e r a t u r e that unemployment (Kelvin and J a r r e t t , 1985; Borgen and Amundsen, 1984; Borrero, 1980b; B r i a r , 1978) and s o c i a l ass istance (Manitoba, 1983; Adams, 1983, S o c i a l Ass is tance Review Committee, 1988; Nat ional Counci l of Welfare, 1987) put rec ip i en t s i n a p o s i t i o n of economic and psychologica l dependency that i s hard to break: "Unemployment turns your l i f e upside down, one day you're se l f - support ing and you can support your fami ly , the next day someone i s t e l l i n g you what to do." "You have no idea how unemployment has af fected my core . I t makes me f ee l l i k e s h i t . . . I ' v e l o s t my 128 s e l f - r e s p e c t and I f ee l I'm worth nothing. . .What are you? You're fucking nothing." There was a v a r i e t y of e f fec ts on i n d i v i d u a l s inc lud ing diminished self-esteem and se l f -conf idence , i s o l a t i o n , too much time, a lack of s t r u c t u r e , s tagnat ion, lack of motivat ion, h u m i l i a t i o n , s t re s s , depression, pressure from fr iends and r e l a t i v e s , loss of c o n t r o l and independence, b i t t ernes s , and anger. Few people f e l t p o s i t i v e about t h e i r s i t u a t i o n and most seemed s incere about wanting to make changes i n t h e i r l i v e s . For most, unemployment was a f i n a n c i a l quagmire that d i d not allow them, or t h e i r f a m i l i e s , to lead normal l i v e s and excluded them from the economic and s o c i a l mainstream of soc ie ty . Unemployment had negative e f fects on both males and females. General ly , however, the impact was more severe on males. This might be p a r t l y due to s o c i e t a l expectations, s o c i a l serv ice p o l i c i e s , or the r e a l i t i e s of the labour market. Several women d id not l i k e being unemployed but at the same time were p o s i t i v e about the job of r a i s i n g t h e i r c h i l d r e n . This observation i s cons is tent with the S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto's f ind ing that the "majority of both 129 the ESI [Employment Support Intervent ion Program] and comparison groups th ink r a i s i n g t h e i r family i s more important than working even though they a lso sa id they wanted to work" (1989:76). As w e l l , several mothers a l luded to having only worked, and been able to f i n d , "dead-end jobs" and were therefore bet ter o f f , from a number of perspect ives , being at home. This i s not to say that many s ing le mothers d id not f ee l i n t e r n a l and external pressure to be working and "off welfare": "emotionally i t was devastating to f ee l that you're doing the kinds of things that soc iety c a l l s for you to do l i k e r a i s e your family and s t u f f . And then a l l of a sudden you're not doing i t any longer, i t was tough that way." In general , however, being unemployed and on s o c i a l ass is tance puts a tremendous amount of ex terna l , i n t e r n a l , and f i n a n c i a l pressure on men. A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Serv ices , f a m i l i e s , and fr iends expect men to work. Not to be employed i s often a s ign of personal f a i l u r e (Hayes & Nutman, 1981; Buckland & MacGregor, 1986; K e l v i n and J a r r e t t , 1985) and t h i s i s i n t e r n a l i z e d by many men: "Unemployment takes away your manhood...what k ind 130 of a man i s a r e a l man who doesn't want to support h i s f a m i l y . . . y o u work a l l your l i f e and then a l l of a sudden i t ' s l i k e nobody wants you any m o r e . . . " "I've l o s t my s e l f respect and I f ee l I'm worth nothing." The r e s u l t s from the wel l -be ing sect ion of the study a l so support the stages of unemployment found i n the l i t e r a t u r e . While i t was not uniform or l i n e a r , there was evidence that a f t er a c e r t a i n amount of time "f ight ing unemployment," there i s a tendency for people to stop t r y i n g and to adapt themselves to t h e i r s i t u a t i o n . This i s consistent with K e l v i n and J a r r e t t ' s (1985) conc lus ion , derived from a comprehensive review of the l i t e r a t u r e on stages theory, that prolonged unemployment eventual ly leads to res ignat ion and apathy. People not only lose contact with fr iends and former s o c i a l patterns but a lso with the labour market. Several people s p e c i f i c a l l y addressed the issue and made comments about having given up, wanting to give up, stagnating or "being i n a r u t . " Accompanying these fee l ings i s a strong tendency toward i s o l a t i o n and withdrawal from s o c i a l p a r t i c i p a t i o n : " F i r s t year and a h a l f [of being unemployed] I 131 fought her but a f t er that you keep ge t t ing k icked . You're l i k e a dog, pret ty soon you're gonna l i e down and stay t h e r e . . . I f I d i d n ' t have a family r i g h t now I would have q u i t . I can understand when I read about s u i c i d e s - I ' v e thought about i t . " The lack of finances emerged c l e a r l y as the root of a downward s p i r a l of unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance that t i e s people to a pattern of dependency and can be devastat ing i n terms of s e l f - r e s p e c t , d i g n i t y and mot ivat ion . Seventy-nine percent of the December sample (19/24) mentioned the lack of finances as having s i g n i f i c a n t and detrimental e f fec ts on t h e i r l i v e s : "we're always borrowing money to get t h r o u g h . . . I had to borrow f i f t y bucks o f f my wi fe ' s son, i f your t a l k i n g about self-esteem, that h u r t s . " "I don't have any savings, I'm always broke. I'm not able to supply the things for the kids that I would l i k e to . I would l i k e to be able to take my kids on a vacat ion ." This f ind ing i s very s i m i l a r to Danie l ' s (Bal loch, Hume, Jones & Westland, 1985) f ind ing that 72% of a group (sample of 1,479) concerned about being unemployed mentioned worries about money. 132 The downward s p i r a l and the complexity of the problems worsened for some of the respondents over the course of t h i s study. In the March follow-up interviews, one respondent had entered a halfway house for a l c o h o l i c s , one had been charged with fraud, and another was dea l ing with a sexual abuse issue that had been with her s ince her chi ldhood. The r e s u l t s of t h i s study would seem to suggest that there i s a need for more research in to the i n t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p and the complexity of economic and psycho-soc ia l problems that confront the long-term unemployed on s o c i a l ass is tance . For some people, p a r t i c u l a r l y those who have been on s o c i a l ass is tance for extended periods of time, unemployment seemed l i k e only one part of a bigger package. The ir l i v e s had often become so complicated and negative that a job alone would seem u n l i k e l y to solve anything on any sort of permanent or long-term bas i s . A t h i r t y - e i g h t year o ld male discussed how d i f f i c u l t i t had become for him a f t e r three years of unemployment and s o c i a l ass i s tance . He pointed out that the longer he was on welfare, the more complicated, interwoven and entrenched h i s f i n a n c i a l , employment, s o c i a l , and emotional problems became: "It 's l i k e a web, you t r y to get one strand 133 unrave l led and there ' s twenty more." A s i g n i f i c a n t f ind ing of the study was a general lack of information on the part of the respondents about resources, s erv ices , and options a v a i l a b l e for s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s i n Edmonton. The lack of information a v a i l a b l e to s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s was a lso noted i n studies by P e r r i n (1987), H a l i f a x (1988), Manitoba (1983), Adams (1989), and The S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto (1989) . Seventy-one percent of the p a r t i c i p a n t s (17/24) i n the study knew of no programs or services a v a i l a b l e for them i n the c i t y . Many of the respondents were i s o l a t e d , saw themselves as unmotivated, l i v e d outside of the c i t y , or were new to the c i t y . Two kind of in format ion-re la ted problems emerged. The f i r s t was simply a lack of knowledge about employment-related serv ices for the unemployed. Edmonton has developed a v a r i e t y of resources , serv ices and options for c e r t a i n groups of the unemployed, p a r t i c u l a r l y s ing le mothers. One woman who was new to the c i t y commented that "they o f f er a l o t out here, I was quite surpr i s ed ." Respondents were often a lso unaware of resources and options that many people take for granted. An example i s an ex-truck d r i v e r who 134 had wanted to go back to school but had been unaware that there were such things as student loans. He stated that "he d i d n ' t know how to get a student loan, d i d n ' t have a c l u e . " Other respondents s i m i l a r l y noted that they wanted to explore options but d i d not how to i n i t i a t e and carry through the process: "I was looking at going back to school but I d i d n ' t r e a l l y know how to go about i t . " "I wanted to be an E l e c t r o n i c s Engineer but I d i d n ' t know nothing about i t . I d i d n ' t know how to go about i t and I d i d n ' t know how to f i n d the i n f o r m a t i o n . . . I don't have a c lue where to s t a r t . I need help on how to s t a r t and where to s t a r t . " The second type of problem for some respondents was i n process ing information once they had i t . Several were interes ted i n going back to school , or ge t t ing into t r a i n i n g , and could get the a v a i l a b l e information but then had problems making sense out of i t and making r a t i o n a l dec is ions based on the information. A female i n the study noted that much of the information a v a i l a b l e was not geared for people who have problems reading or understanding. She noted that there was a need for information that "us simple-minded fo lk can understand 135 instead of using a l l those b i g words." Several respondents were a lso i l l i t e r a t e and one was l e g a l l y b l i n d which a lso caused information- re la ted problems for them. A f t e r f ind ing out about the many programs a v a i l a b l e for him i n Edmonton, the b l i n d man noted: "nobody's ever t o l d me about any of these programs, and none of t h i s s t u f f . I d i d n ' t know where to look. I can ' t read a telephone b o o k . . . " At l eas t part of the lack of information and genera l ly poor f ee l ing of wel l -be ing for respondents stemmed from t h e i r existence on s o c i a l ass i s tance . The de-humanizing, in t imida t ing , and puni t ive approach of A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services and people's negative experiences with the s o c i a l ass istance system cont inua l ly emerged from the study. For 93% (14/15) of those who brought up the t o p i c , the department was seen as negative, to be avoided as much as pos s ib l e . The r e s u l t s of t h i s study would seem to support the various studies c a r r i e d out i n Canada during the 1980's (National Counci l of Welfare, 1987 H a l i f a x , 1988; Manitoba, 1983; Adams, 1983; S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee, 1988, Lightman, 1987) which argue that the present s o c i a l ass is tance system i s more of a d i s incen t ive and puni t ive process 136 than h e l p f u l or an incent ive to people i n t h e i r e f f o r t s to break out of the poverty t rap: "Just because we're unemployed we s t i l l b leed , we s t i l l hur t , and we s t i l l f e e l . . . S o c i a l Services t o l d me I have to do i t on my own. . . There 1 s a l o t of us on welfare that don't want to be on i t . . . j u s t give us one inch of a break but there ' s no break." The f indings of t h i s study seem to suggest that A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services has l i t t l e or no c r e d i b i l i t y with i t s c l i e n t e l e . The e f fec t i s that persons on s o c i a l ass istance avoid the department and t r e a t any serv ice , program or r e f e r r a l from i t with cynicism and scept ic i sm. One of the most consis tent f indings of the study was that respondents were often leery about t h e i r r e f e r r a l to PSDN, often because the r e f e r r a l came from a s o c i a l worker ( in A l b e r t a , no d i s t i n c t i o n i s made between f i n a n c i a l a i d workers and s o c i a l workers) who was seen as not being on "the ir s ide ." Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Services was a lso perceived by respondents as being of no help from an employment or information-generating perspect ive . Many i n d i v i d u a l s had never ta lked to t h e i r s o c i a l worker, and 137 for those that had the experience was usua l ly confrontat ive and unsat i s fy ing: "Socia l Services i s no he lp , they never t a l k about work. 1 1 "I'm not ge t t ing any information from the s o c i a l w o r k e r . . . 1 spend two or three hours a day t r y i n g to get hold of my s o c i a l worker." "I don't r e a l l y consider the s o c i a l worker any form of h e l p . . . y o u can' t get through to them. . . they s t re s s , they a c t u a l l y avoid meeting you, so i f you want counse l l ing or whatever, f ind someone e l se ." From a psycho-soc ia l perspect ive , comments from respondents were general ly that Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Services often made them fee l l i k e " id iots" or "scum." The fee l ings of worthlessness, shame, and g u i l t that many respondents were f e e l i n g about being unemployed i n the f i r s t p lace were exacerbated by the whole degrading s o c i a l ass is tance system and process. The i n d i v i d u a l s i n t h i s study d i d not perceive that the s o c i a l workers knew them, understood t h e i r s i t u a t i o n s , or cared about what they were going through: "to S o c i a l Serv ices , you're a number and a f i l e . " "you f ee l l i k e you're i n p r i s o n , S o c i a l Services i s 138 always on your back." "soc ia l workers are very hard to t a l k t o . . . t h e y c lose you o f f so fa s t . . .they don't know what's going on, they don't l e t you expla in th ings ." "they don't care who I am." The negative and puni t ive approach of the A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services was p a r t i c u l a r l y d isheartening for the many people i n the study who were motivated or wanted to make changes i n t h e i r l i v e s . Several respondents discussed approaching A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services for help at one time or another and being snubbed, humil iated or made to f ee l s t u p i d . The r e s u l t was that they tended to be very hes i tant and re luc tant about approaching the Department again. The problem with t h i s i s that many people become i s o l a t e d qui te qu ick ly when they are on s o c i a l ass istance (Adams, 1983). S o c i a l Services i s often the only system they come to know and have contact with, and in ter face with, on any sort of cons is tent bas i s . I f they are not ge t t ing information or help from the system they often do not know where e l se to go. The en t i re de-humanizing process further adds to t h e i r sense of worthlessness and r e j e c t i o n : "It 's hard to get out you know and welfare makes i t 139 tough for people to get out of . I f you don't have enough money at the end of the month to pay for everything and you phone them, they say "you f igure a way out." So you f igure a way out and as s o o n as you've f igured a way out they want to take back that money that you f igured a way out i n the f i r s t p lace ." From December to March, many respondents had made s i g n i f i c a n t progress i n t h e i r l i v e s . F ive of the nineteen i n d i v i d u a l s who were interviewed i n both December and March had s tarted jobs or small businesses out of t h e i r homes; e ight were going to school or i n t r a i n i n g programs, enro l l ed i n school or i n j o b -readiness programs; two had made s i g n i f i c a n t s o c i a l l y -r e l a t e d progress; and four had made l i t t l e , or no, progress i n any d i r e c t i o n . One of the more consistent and s i g n i f i c a n t f indings of the study was that those respondents who had made changes such as ge t t ing jobs, going to school , or even e n r o l l i n g i n courses, general ly perceived themselves as more conf ident , f e e l i n g bet ter about themselves, and were more exc i ted and hopeful about themselves and t h e i r futures . This f ind ing i s consistent with the l i t e r a t u r e 140 on the c e n t r a l i t y of work, or jus t p o s i t i v e l y perceived a c t i v i t y , and the r o l e i t plays economically and psycho-s o c i a l l y i n soc iety (Robertson, 1986; Benson, 1972; Friedman and Havighurst , 1954; Fagin , 1984, Schore, 1987) . In March, a respondent noted that " i f you don't have hope, you don't have nothing." This seems to sum up the fee l ings of those who perceived that they were making some progress i n t h e i r l i v e s . C l e a r l y , hope and optimism plays a c e n t r a l r o l e i n how people f e e l about themselves and the world around them. An important point that needs to be made i s that jus t because some people genera l ly perceived themselves as bet ter o f f from being involved i n something (for example school or t ra in ing) does not mean that p lac ing them i n jobs or a c t i v i t i e s , simply for the sake of keeping them busy, i s an answer to anything. Another s i g n i f i c a n t f ind ing of the study was a d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n of the p a r t i c i p a t i o n of respondents i n PSDN. Although 89.4% (17/19) of the respondents involved i n the follow-up interviews f e l t they were bet ter o f f for being i n , or having been i n , the program and recommended i t , there was a wide d i v e r s i t y i n the expectations of, usage of, and p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n , the program. As 141 discussed throughout t h i s overview, i n d i v i d u a l s came into the program with a vast array and d i v e r s i t y of needs and problems, employment and s o c i a l l y - r e l a t e d b a r r i e r s , and d i f f e r i n g l e v e l s of education, s k i l l s , and perceptions and expectations about themselves and PSDN. Some were ex-profess ionals or had s o l i d work h i s t o r i e s and needed only contacts and j o b - r e l a t e d support (e .g . help with the cost of the job-search, moral support, encouragement). Others had a multitude of psycho-soc ia l and employment-r e l a t e d b a r r i e r s and problems and needed services and intervent ions ranging from a lcohol counse l l ing and l i f e s k i l l s t r a i n i n g to p s y c h i a t r i c he lp . Some needed, or wanted, l i t t l e or no contact with the counse l lors while others wanted a l o t of contact and involvement. As respondents in ter faced and interacted with the PSDN counse l lors , there seemed to be an i n t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p of i n t e r n a l and external var iab le s that came together to d i c t a t e the eventual dec i s ion on the part of the c l i e n t s as to what extent they would p a r t i c i p a t e i n the program. As mentioned e a r l i e r , four bas ic respondent p a r t i c i p a t i o n categories were i d e n t i f i e d : React ive , Pro-a c t i v e , Res t r i c t ed and Reluctant . Four summaries are provided to present an overview of the f ind ings . They 142 are followed by an in-depth analys i s of each p a r t i c i p a n t category. Summary 1:Reactive Par t i c ipant s - charac ter i zed by extensive p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n PSDN. -came in to program with few goals or framework for change i n place (establ ished i n co-operat ion with PSDN). E f f e c t s o f Unemployment: f i n a n c i a l , i s o l a t i o n , embarrassment, hopelessness, stagnancy, b i t t e r n e s s , anger, boredom. P e r c e p t i o n o f A l b e r t a F a m i l y and S o c i a l S e r v i c e s : seen as being l i t t l e he lp , avoided as much as p o s s i b l e . Response t o PSDN i n December: p o s i t i v e for f i v e , negative for one, two had not s tarted program. Program seen as p o s i t i v e , h e l p f u l , support ive , mot ivat ing, non-threatening and a source of information. Response t o PSDN i n March: S i m i l a r to December. Program h igh ly recommended. Changes Made From December t o March: four i n schoo l / training/pre-employment programs. One obtained job as a teacher. One s tarted small business out of home. One dea l ing with sexual abuse from chi ldhood. One made gains i n s o c i a l re-engagement and re la ted areas. 143 Well-being: s i g n i f i c a n t improvements from December to March. Summary 2:Pro-act ive Par t i c ipant s -extensive p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n PSDN but came into program with more es tabl i shed goals and objec t ives . -PSDN used p r i m a r i l y to c l a r i f y / r e f i n e ideas . E f f e c t s of Unemployment: tended to be minimal, respondents e i t h e r adapted to s i t u a t i o n , unemployed by choice , or i n perceived career change. Perception of Alberta Family and Soc i a l Services: negative, however t h i s group tended to blame the department l e ss than other groups. Response to PSDN i n December: very p o s i t i v e ; most important elements were informat ion/ ideas , guidance, and support. Response to PSDN i n March: s i m i l a r to December; PSDN played s i g n i f i c a n t r o l e i n put t ing respondent's ideas in to a c t i o n ; resources and information p a r t i c u l a r l y important. Changes Made From December to March: three i n school , one e n r o l l e d i n U n i v e r s i t y for September, and one taking courses and doing income taxes out of home. 144 Well-being: seen as higher by respondents i n March but tended to be general ly p o s i t i v e i n December. Summary 3:Restricted Par t i c ipant s -recommended PSDN but p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the program had not resu l ted i n much progress . -respondents were males with complex and i n t e r -r e l a t e d employment b a r r i e r s and problems. - severe ly r e s t r i c t e d by lack of app l i cab le resources , s erv ices , and opportuni t i e s . Effects of Unemployment: devastat ing; f i n a n c i a l , f ee l ings of f a i l u r e and inadequacy, hopelessness, low self-esteem and se l f -conf idence , depression, lack of c o n t r o l , and fee l ings of r e j e c t i o n . Perception of Alberta Family and Social Services: negative, but l i t t l e resentment towards department. Response to PSDN in December: genera l ly p o s i t i v e ; important that someone l i s t ened and seemed to understand. Response to PSDN in March: s t i l l recommended but l e ss so than i n December; s t i l l seen as h e l p f u l and supportive but program had been unable to do much for t h i s group. Changes Made From December to March: few p o s i t i v e changes. 145 Well-being: general ly worse. Summary 4:Reluctant Par t i c ipant s - d i d not recommend PSDN, program not seen as usefu l and p a r t i c i p a t i o n was n e g l i g i b l e to n i l . Effects of Unemployment: very l i t t l e e f f ec t ; general s a t i s f a c t i o n with s i t u a t i o n . Perception of Alberta Family and Social Services: negative; to be avoided, creates s t res s , not seen as h e l p f u l . Response to PSDN in December: one was negative, one was p o s i t i v e , and one had not s tarted program. The negative response evolved from a f ee l ing of being co-erced into the program. Response to PSDN in March: two respondents were negative, and one had mixed f ee l ings . A l l three saw l i t t l e purpose i n attending a program that was not based on g i v i n g them a job . Unl ike the other groups i n the study, there was a lack of understanding, or acceptance, of PSDN's r o l e and l i m i t a t i o n s . Changes Made From December to March: very few; one respondent had found a part- t ime job . Well-being: general ly the same i n March as i n December. 146 Each p a r t i c i p a n t category w i l l now be analyzed i n more d e t a i l . The data are broken down into December and March subsections. The factors and v a r i a b l e s in f luenc ing the respondent's p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the program support a thes i s put forward by Ripp le , and Ripple and Alexander, i n 1955 and 1956 re spec t ive ly . R i p p l e ' s s tudies examined the propos i t i on that a c l i e n t ' s use of casework serv ices i s determined by motivat ion, capaci ty and the opportuni t ies afforded by both the environment and by the s o c i a l agency from which help i s sought. Reactive P a r t i c i p a n t s PSDN had a p i v o t a l r o l e , as perceived by the c l i e n t s , i n the outcomes of e ight persons. These persons character ized PSDN's ro l e as c en tra l i n changes that they made between December and March. Four of the i n d i v i d u a l s i n t h i s category were attending, or were enro l l ed i n , school , t r a i n i n g , or p r e -employment t r a i n i n g . One had been accepted into a f e d e r a l l y funded computer re -entry program, one was i n an academic upgrading program, one was taking a p r e -employment course and another had enro l l ed i n a t e c h n i c a l program for September. For these four i n d i v i d u a l s , the 147 primary r o l e of PSDN was the information, ideas, mot ivat ion, and support: "I 'd never heard about PSDN, then they 're here and here I am going to school [computer t r a i n i n g ] . . . the counse l lor helped me i n a l o t of ways, i f i t wasn't for her I wouldn't be i n t h i s program." "[the counsel lor] helped me out, found me another place to go to s c h o o l . . I had heard I couldn' t go to A l b e r t a Vocat ional C o l l e g e . . . t h e counse l lor t o l d me to go and check i t o u t . . . the counse l lor sa id "nothing i s going to stop you." "[the counsel lor] asked me where my in teres t s were, how things were going and i f I was happy about l i f e , and here are some a l t e r n a t i v e s . Try t h i s and that , so I t r i e d a couple of things and i t worked." One person had s tarted a job as a teacher i n a youth detention centre and another had s tarted a small business out of h i s home. Both a t t r i b u t e d PSDN as p lay ing a major r o l e i n these changes. For the t h i r t y year o ld r e c e n t l y -graduated teacher, PSDN had given the name of the person to be contacted and reassured her about working i n a detention centre: "It was through PSDN, they t o l d me about the place 148 I'm working at now, she was the one who gave me the name of the p r i n c i p a l and t o l d me to go down and put i n a resume. I probably would have been too scared but my counse l lor re-assured me." The respondent who had s tarted a small business was a f i f t y - f o u r year o ld male who f e l t the motivat ion that was provided by the PSDN counsel lor was instrumental i n ge t t ing him going again and being p o s i t i v e : "In December, I was at a low po int , I had given up d o i n g . . . I do be l ieve the encouragement of PSDN was what was needed." Two respondents had made s i g n i f i c a n t advancement i n areas not s p e c i f i c a l l y re la ted to employment but which can be seen as e s sent ia l prerequ i s i t e s for long-term independence. Since December, one respondent had begun to deal with a sexual abuse issue from her chi ldhood that she had never faced and deal t with . The t h i r t y - f i v e divorced mother of two f e l t that the PSDN counse l lor had given her the confidence to deal with the issue: "I wouldn't have done i t without t a l k i n g to the PSDN counse l lor . I d i d n ' t have the confidence to p i c k up the phone and get he lp ." The other respondent who had made s i g n i f i c a n t 149 progress was a l e g a l l y b l i n d twenty-nine year o l d man. His eye-s ight had been growing progress ive ly worse over the years but he had never been t o l d about any of the serv ices a v a i l a b l e i n Edmonton for the b l i n d . Through PSDN, he had found out about a v a r i e t y of programs that he had not been aware of prev ious ly . From December to March he had made s i g n i f i c a n t progress i n a number of areas i n h i s l i f e inc lud ing s o c i a l re-engagement, support groups, access to employment opportunit ies (e .g . t r a i n i n g opportuni t ies and funding for the handicapped) and serv ices for the handicapped. He character ized PSDN as p lay ing the e s sent ia l r o l e i n t h i s process: "PSDN was the centre, the whole nucleus for expanding, everything went outwards from PSDN and the c o u n s e l l o r . . . i f I wouldn't have went to PSDN I ' d s t i l l be s i t t i n g exact ly where I was i n October, doing absolute ly nothing." (i) December Interviews The December interviews revealed some contrasts and some s i m i l a r i t i e s between the f ive women and three men i n the Reactive p a r t i c i p a t i o n category. Four of the women l i s t e d f i n a n c i a l concerns as the major e f fec t of 150 unemployment: "Socia l Services bare ly gives you enough to l i v e on and you've got to make i t s t r e t c h . . . y o u ' v e got to eat s tupid foods l i k e Kraf t Dinner and potatoes, starchy s t u f f tha t ' s not good for you. Only because i t ' s cheaper and everything e lse i s so expensive." The f i f t h women noted that she had been making minimum wages at her l a s t job so i t was not any harder for her , from a f i n a n c i a l perspect ive , being on s o c i a l ass i s tance . Two of the women d i d not f e e l that being unemployed had negat ive ly affected t h e i r self- image or se l f -conf idence although they d id not l i k e being unemployed. They f e l t that being unemployed was i s o l a t i n g , embarrassing, and f r u s t r a t i n g . Three of the women f e l t that being unemployed was a negative experience and had affected them i n the form of lowered self-esteem and se l f -conf idence , sadness, helplessness , occas ional depression, embarrassment, powerlessness and r e l a t i o n s h i p s with others: "I th ink i t ' s af fected me i n the way that I don't f ee l good about myself. I ' d l i k e to have a career ." "You f ee l sad, hope le s s . . . you can' t do anything about i t . " 151 The se l f -perce ived b a r r i e r s and problems for the women v a r i e d . A twenty-two year o ld woman with a grade s i x education was i l l i t e r a t e which created fear and i s o l a t i o n for her . A t h i r t y year o ld s ing le mother had asthma, no work experience, a grade nine education and l i v e d outside of Edmonton with no t r a n s p o r t a t i o n . Another t h i r t y year o ld woman was new to the c i t y and was having problems f ind ing adequate daycare. A t h i r t y -f i v e year o ld women with a grade nine education l i s t e d her employment b a r r i e r s as shyness, low se l f -conf idence and a lack of experience. A l l of the women get support from r e l a t i v e s or f r i e n d s . For men, the e f fec ts of unemployment were p r i m a r i l y the lack of money and stagnancy. One of the males was t h i r t y - o n e and had not worked since 1985 and stated that at f i r s t being unemployed got him down but that he had adapted f i n a n c i a l l y and emotional ly . For the other two males, however, unemployment was a very negative experience. They spoke of b i t t e r n e s s , anger, depression, boredom, depression, le thargy, i s o l a t i o n , pressure ( i n t e r n a l and external) and a loss of confidence. The twenty-nine year o ld l e g a l l y - b l i n d man discussed the f r u s t r a t i o n of being unemployed and impact of the boredom 152 and lack of f inances: "You aren ' t making any progress with your l i f e . You f e e l l i k e you're jus t s i t t i n g there-the days go by, by, by. Sometimes during the summer time i t was rough. Everyone was working or something l i k e that . So who do you t a l k to? Nobody. You watch that danged T . V . l i k e some kind of i d i o t . I can ' t even see the T . V . that w e l l . . . " The f i f t y - f o u r year o ld male who had l a s t worked i n 1988 spoke about how h i s prolonged unemployment had made him lose i n t e r e s t , not only i n looking for work but i n other aspects of h i s l i f e as w e l l : "I've always been a very ac t ive person and I f i n d that I'm becoming quite l e t h a r g i c . I don't have the ambition to go out and do things l i k e I d i d . I t doesn't matter what. Even going f i s h i n g , I don't have the ambition for i t . " Support for males, when i t was perceived as necessary, came e i ther from family and fr iends or from w i t h i n . The f i f t y - f o u r year o ld man stated that he pre ferred to deal with h i s s i t u a t i o n i n t e r n a l l y : "Well , I l a r g e l y deal with i t myself. My wife usua l ly tunes i n f a i r l y wel l when I'm get t ing down 153 and s h e ' l l do her best to encourage me and i f worse come to worse, there ' s the church." In response to the question of what types of programs or services might be h e l p f u l for unemployed persons l i k e themselves, there was a range of responses from both sexes. Three persons mentioned the need for t r a i n i n g programs (one person s p e c i f i e d the need for t r a i n i n g programs for o lder persons), and two noted the need for more information. Other comments were the need for more job opportuni t i e s , supported education, grants for t r a i n i n g , and bet ter t ranspor ta t ion . Several people addressed the question from the perspect ive that any programs that are developed would have to be vo luntary , p o s i t i v e and motivating i n t h e i r approach i f they were going to get people involved: "you can' t force somebody to go, you've got to make them fee l l i k e they r e a l l y have to go for t h e i r own benef i t ." One women also commented that no matter what programs were developed, she would not want to go through A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services for i t . This was noted by several respondents i n the study, although not so much i n t h i s p a r t i c u l a r group: 154 "I wouldn't want to go through Welfare for i t . No, I ' d rather leave welfare alone-get away from me." A common v a r i a b l e noted was the lack of information about a v a i l a b l e resources, services and options and, i n some cases, an i n a b i l i t y or d i f f i c u l t y i n process ing information. Two respondents were new to Edmonton and had no idea what might be a v a i l a b l e for them i n the c i t y . One woman was f u n c t i o n a l l y i l l i t e r a t e and not only needed help f ind ing information but processing i t as w e l l . The other respondents i n t h i s category had been on s o c i a l ass is tance for long periods of time and tended to be unaware of what might be ava i l ab l e for them. Some respondents a lso noted that they had been on s o c i a l ass is tance for so long that they had gotten themselves into r u t s : "when you're on welfare for so long, you j u s t sor t of s i t back and r e l a x . " As w e l l , several of the respondents noted how A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services had been l i t t l e help i n ge t t ing information or he lping them i n t h e i r e f f o r t s to get o f f s o c i a l ass i s tance . Although most people were thankful for the help that they were rece iv ing they d i d not view S o c i a l Services as being any sort of help and 155 was to be avoided as much as pos s ib l e . In general , experiences with the department were negative and common remarks were that s o c i a l workers were c o l d , hard to get hold of, and unsympathetic: "they [Alberta Family and S o c i a l Services] j u s t take your job searches and s p i t your cheques out ." "you can r a r e l y get to see the s o c i a l worker when you need t o . Any time that I need to t a l k to her about something I spend two, three hours on the phone t r y i n g to get her on the phone." "The only time I ever saw my s o c i a l worker was when I f i l e d for benef i t s . That was the only time I ever saw her ." "They don't do nothing for you, nothing. They don't care . As long as you get o f f welfare they 're happy, but they won't help you get o f f ." Consistent with a l l respondents i n the study, none of the respondents i n t h i s category had heard of PSDN before they had s tarted the program. Everyone i n t h i s group had been re ferred by t h e i r s o c i a l worker, although one woman had i n i t i a t e d the r e f e r r a l (although not s p e c i f i c a l l y to PSDN). Responses to the r e f e r r a l were v a r i e d . Genera l ly , most people f e l t that they had 156 "nothing to lose" or "would t r y anything once." For others , however, the r e f e r r a l was anxie ty- inducing: "I thought people were going to ream my ass out for not working or something, for t r y i n g to suck up t h e i r money or something l i k e t h i s - t r y i n g to fake that I was b l i n d or something." Six of the eight respondents had s tar ted PSDN at the time of the December interviews and i n i t i a l responses were p o s i t i v e for f i v e . One woman was i n i t i a l l y negative about the program s ta t ing that she "didn't know i f the program would he lp ." She f e l t that she was being "bothered a l l the time" and that PSDN's approach was s i m i l a r to A lber ta Family and S o c i a l Serv ices . In December, the most commonly-mentioned aspect of PSDN was the approach. The program was perceived by respondents as non-threatening, p o s i t i v e , h e l p f u l and support ive . I t was important for respondents not to f ee l l i k e they were under pressure or being threatened. People f e l t comfortable and relaxed with t h e i r counse l lors and t h i s was perceived as c r i t i c a l . The important outcome of the perceived approach was that i t engaged a l o t of people i n a process of co-operat ive p lanning, g o a l - s e t t i n g and information-sharing that most 157 of them had not been a part of before. People f e l t that they could t r u s t t h e i r PSDN counsel lors and could discuss a range of issues and problems that were a f f e c t i n g them: "I l i k e to f ee l comfortable around somebody.. .I don't l i k e people hass l ing m e . . . I ' v e had enough pressure i n my l i f e ju s t dea l ing with what I g o t . . . [ t h e counsel lor] i s someone you can s i t down and have a good chat with, and probably t a l k to her about anything that you wanted to t a l k about." "the counse l lor i s l i k e a f r i e n d , you know you go to places and they make you fee l l i k e "what does t h i s mean and when w i l l i t be o v e r " . . . I get the one on-one and I can get where I got to go." The p o s i t i v e and co-operat ive ly perceived approach of the program worked to get people motivated and exc i t ed . As mentioned, many of the people i n t h i s group, p a r t i c u l a r l y the men, described themselves as being i n ruts and l e t h a r g i c . Some had jus t l o s t hope and had stopped t r y i n g . PSDN seemed to be able to get them motivated and interes ted i n doing something again: "[the counsel lor] has given me the hope. I'm going to be able to get what I want, Instead of people saying "No you can' t do i t , " she's saying "yes you 158 can. " "It 's l i k e a he lping hand. When you're on so long, you j u s t sort of s i t back and re lax . But then i f someone's pushing you a l i t t l e b i t , i t sor t of h e l p s . . . she's l i k e a motivator because you know you've got to see her ." ( i i ) March Interviews As discussed e a r l i e r , the respondents i n the Reactive p a r t i c i p a t i o n category made tang ib le and r e a l progress i n a v a r i e t y of areas. A cons is tent f ind ing for a l l the respondents was increased perceptions of we l l -be ing i n terms of confidence, f e e l i n g bet ter about themselves and being more exci ted and hopeful about themselves and t h e i r futures . The people who obtained jobs , s tar ted small businesses or who had s tar ted school were p a r t i c u l a r l y p o s i t i v e : "Once you get back into i t your se l f -conf idence returns as you keep working on i t . " "I f ee l be t ter , n a t u r a l l y when you're working you do f ee l be t t er ." "I f ee l bet ter about myself over the l a s t three months . . . I 'm r e a l l y exc i ted ." 159 Even those who d i d not f ind jobs or go back to school , however, f e l t bet ter o f f for perce iv ing that they had made important progress i n t h e i r l i v e s . The b l i n d man who had taken a v a r i e t y of major steps s tated: " . . .1 f ee l a l o t bet ter than I d id three months ago, most d e f i n i t e l y . . .1 guess i t ' s ju s t a whole new look on l i f e for me because I'm sort of s t a r t i n g my l i f e over." Reaction to PSDN i n March was s i m i l a r to December. Respondents were s t i l l p o s i t i v e about the program and recommended i t for a v a r i e t y of reasons. The woman who had o r i g i n a l l y been s c e p t i c a l about the program was now attending a pre-employment program and f e l t p o s i t i v e about PSDN and the help i t had given her . At some point over the three months she came to perceive that PSDN was t r y i n g to help her. In December, t h i s subject had been p a r t i c u l a r l y c r i t i c a l of A lber ta Family and S o c i a l Services and i t may be that the negat iv i ty about the Department made her s c e p t i c a l about the r e f e r r a l to PSDN. She stated that: " . . . i n December, I d i d n ' t know anything about the program and I was kind of negative and quest ioning i t . . . I ' m glad I went now." 160 The program was h ighly recommended by the respondents. They f e l t that the program had benef i t ted them and that they were bet ter o f f for having been involved i n the program. Perhaps r e f l e c t i n g t h e i r own perceptions of themselves i n December, the respondent's reasons for recommending the program were p r i m a r i l y that i t was able to meet a perceived need: "The program's strength i s t a l k i n g to s ing le women who have no future and a c t u a l l y ge t t ing them out and doing something, g i v i n g them the confidence." "The strength of the program i s that i t makes people f ee l bet ter about themselves. . . i t ' s good for people, e s p e c i a l l y those who can' t f ind any work and have nothing going for them." Three strengths emerged i n March as important for respondents. S i m i l a r to the December interviews, the most commonly-noted strength of the program was the involvement of the counsel lors and the general approach and ambience of the program. People s t i l l f e l t that the f r i e n d l y and non-threatening approach of the program was h e l p f u l and important. The counsel lors were seen as a l l i e s i n working towards the goals es tabl i shed by the c l i e n t s : 161 "The fact they 're interes ted i n what I'm gonna do, they 're out there to he lp , obviously they are he lp ing me." "The counse l lor was f r i e n d l y and h e l p f u l , made you f ee l good, she wasn't someone on a pedestal looking down on you." "They don't turn t h e i r backs on you, they 're always w i l l i n g to he lp , the counsel lor i s j u s t s u p e r . . . ready to help anybody." "They're there when I need help , i t helps when you got someone there for you instead of slamming the door i n your face." A strength of the program that emerged more c l e a r l y i n the March interviews was the importance of the information and contacts ava i l ab l e at PSDN. The r e s u l t s of t h i s study would seem to support the need, discussed i n s tudies by P e r r i n (1987), Ha l i fax (1988) and The S o c i a l Ass is tance Review Committee (1988) , for "brokerage services" that can provide "one-stop shopping" for s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s . The woman who had found her job through PSDN noted the importance of being able to go to one place for a v a r i e t y of information. I t was p a r t i c u l a r l y important for her because she was a s ing le 162 mother. I t was more e f f i c i e n t and eas ier for her to arrange one v i s i t at a s ing le s i t e rather than several v i s i t s at a v a r i e t y of locat ions throughout the c i t y : "The biggest th ing i s the contacts , to go one place and get a host of contacts whereas i f you have to run around to ten d i f f e r e n t places and end up with f i v e contacts you're not l i k e l y to do i t because of the expense and t ime." The other common response re la ted to information was that PSDN made persons aware, or more aware, of programs and p o s s i b i l i t i e s that they had not prev ious ly been aware of . As mentioned i n the December sec t ion , two of the respondents were new to Edmonton and others had been on s o c i a l ass istance for long periods of time and had become i s o l a t e d , or had such unpleasant experiences i n previous attempts to approach Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Services for he lp , that they had stopped t r y i n g : "PSDN opened my eyes that there was more out there than I thought." "The strength i s the large resource p o r t f o l i o . . . Y o u can become aware of resources you wouldn't otherwise." 163 "I th ink everyone should take the program i f t h e i r looking for some kind of career he lp , to put out some f ee l er s , to f ind out what they might want to do and to f ind out where there ' s opportuni t i e s , what l i e s out there for everybody." The t h i r d major strength of PSDN noted by several respondents was encouragement and motivat ion. People f e l t that the program had "got them going" and provided a way of i n i t i a t i n g and developing ideas and thoughts and put t ing them into plans of ac t i on . I t was important for a l l the respondents to have someone be l i eve i n them. Some had stopped t r y i n g simply because i t often d i d not seem l i k e anybody cared whether they were making progress or not i n t h e i r l i v e s . For many, past attempts had created more problems than benef i ts thus there was l i t t l e incent ive to reach out for he lp . The f i f t y - f o u r year o ld man, who i n December had f e l t so apathet ic and l e t h a r g i c , noted how important i t was to have someone encouraging him, even i f what he was doing was sure to f a i l : " . . . even i f she knew i t was doomed to f a i l u r e she would s t i l l encourage you to t r y i t , j u s t for the sake of you doing i t . I th ink i t ' s f a n t a s t i c , there should be more people l i k e her ." 164 In summary, PSDN was perceived as p lay ing a v a r i e t y of ro l e s for the react ive p a r t i c i p a n t s . The i n d i v i d u a l s used PSDN extensively and resu l ted i n the respondents making s i g n i f i c a n t and meaningful progress from both a short-term and long-term perspect ive . There was evidence i n the March interviews that the respondents who made changes such as ge t t ing a job , going to school , or even e n r o l l i n g i n courses, perceived themselves as more conf ident , f e e l i n g bet ter about themselves, and more exc i ted about themselves and t h e i r futures . The v a r i a b l e s that the members of t h i s group tended to have i n common were an openness to change, mot ivat ion, perceived needs and problems, an understanding and acceptance of what PSDN could and could not do, a v a i l a b l e serv ices and options , and a wi l l ingness on the part of A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services to fund or support dec i s ions . Respondents i n t h i s category were p r i m a r i l y s ing le parents with c h i l d r e n or persons with obvious and d e b i l i t a t i n g b a r r i e r s l i k e bl indness or i l l i t e r a c y . The only person who d i d not f i t these c r i t e r i a was the t h i r t y - o n e year o ld healthy male who was going to be funded by S o c i a l Services while he went through t r a i n i n g to be a plumber. I t i s unknown why t h i s "employable" 165 male was funded by S o c i a l Services to take a program and other men i n s i m i l a r s i t u a t i o n s , as w i l l be discussed, were not. This discrepancy and inequi table nature of the d i s c r e t i o n a r y powers of s o c i a l workers i s consis tent with many of the studies c a r r i e d out i n the 1980's i n Canada, p a r t i c u l a r l y the Nat ional Counci l of Welfare (1987). P r i o r to attending PSDN, responses ranged from a n t i c i p a t i o n to scept ic i sm. The most s c e p t i c a l tended to be those who were s ing le or considered "job-ready" and were used to the confrontat ive or "job-club" approach c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of A lber ta Family and S o c i a l Serv ices . With the exception of one person, i n i t i a l responses to PSDN were p o s i t i v e . The i n i t i a l and ear ly p o s i t i v e response to the program seemed important for t h i s group. For many, PSDN was the f i r s t organizat ion to ever reach out and show some in teres t and b e l i e f i n them. The people i n t h i s category were able to respond and make the program work for them. An added v a r i a b l e for t h i s group i s that they wanted to make changes and PSDN was p r i m a r i l y a veh ic l e for e s tab l i sh ing goals , a s s i s t i n g them to develop plans to reach those goals and supporting them i n the process of working towards those goals . This f ind ing adds support to P e r r i n ' s (1987) argument t h a t . . . : 166 successful programs are . . .mos t l i k e l y to involve c l i e n t s i n e s tab l i sh ing t h e i r own i n d i v i d u a l objec t ives . . .such involvement can lead to a stronger commitment and bet ter performance, and i n i t s e l f i s an important step i n a s s i s t i n g a person to be independent. (p. 49) The respondents viewed PSDN as very important i n the changes that they were able to make between December and March. The most important aspects of the program were the ambience and h e l p f u l approach of the program and counse l lors , the information, and the motivat ion and encouragement. Pro -ac t ive P a r t i c i p a n t s Five respondents came into PSDN with reasonably wel l -def ined goals and object ives already es tab l i shed . For t h i s group, PSDN played less of a c e n t r a l r o l e for the respondents and more of a c l a r i f y i n g or r e f i n i n g r o l e . There was a wide range of program p a r t i c i p a t i o n and usage wi th in t h i s category depending on i n d i v i d u a l s i t u a t i o n s and how far along r e c i p i e n t s were i n put t ing t h e i r ideas into a c t i o n . There were three females and two males i n t h i s 167 category. The youngest was a twenty-two year o l d s ing le mother with one c h i l d . She had a grade ten education, l i t t l e work h i s t o r y , and had been on s o c i a l ass is tance for two years . The second woman was t h i r t y - o n e years o l d and divorced with two c h i l d r e n . She had a grade nine education, one year of upgrading, and v i r t u a l l y no work h i s t o r y . The t h i r d respondent was a t h i r t y - s i x year o ld woman with two teenage c h i l d r e n . She had a diploma from a community co l lege and a s o l i d work h i s t o r y . She had worked at her l a s t job for f i ve years before q u i t t i n g due to "burn-out." The two males were very d i f f e r e n t . The younger was twenty-three year o l d , s ing l e , and l i v i n g with h i s parents . He had a grade ten education, a c r i m i n a l record and attended A l c o h o l i c s Anonymous. The other male was forty-one years o ld and married with a twelve year o ld son. He had a grade twelve education plus two diplomas from vocat iona l schools for cooking. He worked for ten years with one company before having to qu i t i n 1988 due to diabetes and other hea l th -re la t ed problems. (i) December Interviews Unemployment and s o c i a l ass istance tended not to 168 have a major e f fec t on these respondents. They were e i t h e r adapted to t h e i r s i t u a t i o n , were unemployed by choice , or were quite p o s i t i v e about themselves and t h e i r future . The exception was the younger male who f e l t that unemployment af fected him f i n a n c i a l l y and had gotten him into a r u t . He also f e l t a l o t of pressure from h i s parents to do something: "you're s i t t i n g around and you get lazy and are s leeping i n . You can' t get up when you know you should be get t ing up. So you get yourse l f in to a rut and i t ' s hard to get out o f . . . [ m y parents] look at me l i k e why aren ' t you ge t t ing a job or whatever?" The other respondents, however, were not as negat ive ly af fected by unemployment. One woman was e n r o l l e d i n school for January, and d id not f ee l af fected by unemployment, nor d id she f ee l any pressure from her fami ly , f r i ends , or A lber ta Family and S o c i a l Serv ices . One women had been on s o c i a l ass istance for several years and had adapted to i t . The other had qu i t her job by choice and admitted that although the f i r s t two months were pre t ty tough psycho log ica l ly and f i n a n c i a l l y she found that once she had adapted h e r s e l f to her s i t u a t i o n 169 she had come to enjoy the time o f f to p lan for her future . She d i d , however, point out that she had no in tent ion of s taying on assistance for any length of time which a lso made i t eas ier for her to accept. Both of the l a t t e r two women stated that although they d i d not see t h e i r s i tua t ions as negative i t was s t i l l d i f f i c u l t f i n a n c i a l l y . The woman who had qui t her job was a s ing le mother and r e a l l y f e l t the e f fects of l o s i n g her job , p a r t i c u l a r l y the l o s t benef i t s : "The minute you walk out the door you lose your insurance benef i ts 'and s t u f f and you have to pay a d e n t i s t . You th ink you've got everything up to date and the minute you become unemployed your f i l l i n g s s t a r t f a l l i n g out." They a lso noted that they f e l t the stigma of being on s o c i a l ass istance and the s o c i e t a l pressures for them to get o f f : "I th ink that s o c i a l l y i t ' s not accepted. I t s a stigma with a l o t of people. I f you do not have a job you're lazy and good for nothing but I th ink what i t b o i l s down to i s that you're not r e a l l y l azy , you jus t don't have the s k i l l s to get the jobs or work for seven, e ight , nine, ten or eleven bucks 170 an hour. Minimum wage i s a b i g concern. I can ' t pos s ib ly feed a family on $4.20 an hour. There's no way. Yeah, i t ' s [unemployment] af fected me-the way my kids look at me too." The f i n a l respondent a lso d i d not perceive himself as being negat ive ly af fected by unemployment. He kept himself busy doing odd jobs and, due to h i s medical problems, saw himself i n more of a career change than unemployment. He was quite p o s i t i v e about himself and h i s s i t u a t i o n and, because he was making plans for the next stage of h i s l i f e , saw h i s present status as a temporary one. Unemployment had not affected h i s s e l f -esteem of se l f -conf idence to any degree. These i n d i v i d u a l s were perhaps the most r e a l i s t i c of any i n the sample at assessing themselves and t h e i r s i t u a t i o n s and recogniz ing what they had to do to get where they wanted to be. They tended not make excuses or blame external factors and were adept at i d e n t i f y i n g problems l i k e a lack of t r a i n i n g or education. They were a lso able to form general s trateg ies on t h e i r own for overcoming these perceived b a r r i e r s . In December, the twenty-three year o ld male was able to give quite a d e t a i l e d plan for what he wanted to accomplish i n the 171 next few years: "the course I want to take r i g h t now i s Pre -technology and tha t ' s b a s i c a l l y academic upgrading. That ' s going to be a s ix month course and my E l e c t r i c a l Engineering Technology, t h a t ' s going to be two years a f t er that ." Genera l ly , the respondents were negative about A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Serv ices . They were not, however, as quick to blame the Department for t h e i r problems as some of the other groups. This may again r e f l e c t the view of most of these respondents that s o c i a l ass is tance was only a temporary measure while they made plans for the next step. Unl ike some of the i n d i v i d u a l s i n the study, most notably those i n the R e s t r i c t i v e category, these respondents d id not f ee l trapped i n unemployment or on s o c i a l ass istance with no where to t u r n . These respondents f e l t some c o n t r o l over themselves and t h e i r l i v e s . One person was even p o s i t i v e about A lber ta Family Services and S o c i a l Serv ices , s t a t i n g that he had a good r e l a t i o n s h i p with h i s s o c i a l worker. The other three respondents who addressed the i ssue , however, tended to see S o c i a l Services as c o l d , uncaring, and negative i n i t s approach. This was 172 p a r t i c u l a r l y discouraging for t h i s group because they were so enthus ias t i c and se l f -mot ivated: "They don't know me. They see me as a number and I have two c h i l d r e n and I'm on s o c i a l ass is tance . . . T h e worker doesn't care to know who I am." In terms of support, these respondents, l i k e almost a l l the respondents i n t h i s study, turned to family and f r i e n d s . Support was important. Although they were perhaps the most capable and motivated of a l l the groups, support was s t i l l seen as e s s e n t i a l . In d i scuss ing the kinds of employment-related programs that they would l i k e to see, support was the most commonly mentioned element. Again, these respondents had some general goals i n mind; guidance, information, and ideas was what they were looking for : "Support i s impor tant . . . someone there you could count on" The respondents were the best informed group i n terms of s p e c i f i c information about the serv ices and resources that they were interes ted i n . Being the most motivated and d i r e c t e d , they had usua l ly sought out the information that was re levant for them. A problem that was s t i l l noted by t h i s group, however, was making 173 dec is ions based on the information that they had gathered. The twenty-three year o ld male, for example, explained that even though he wanted to go back to school he s t i l l needed help and advice: "I th ink tha t ' s what I needed, a l o t of ideas . You know, what the heck am I going to do type of t h i n g . I knew I wanted to go back to school but I d i d n ' t know how to go about i t . " As with most of the respondents i n the study, these i n d i v i d u a l s had not heard of PSDN and were re ferred by s o c i a l workers. I n i t i a l response ranged from receptiveness to resentfulness . For many, there was an i m p l i c i t , and sometimes e x p l i c i t , assumption that they had to attend the program. Several of the respondents were i n i t i a l l y angry at the r e f e r r a l because they perceived themselves as doing f ine on t h e i r own and d i d not want to take some course or program that would get i n the way: "It [going to PSDN] turned out w e l l , but I d i d resent the tone of the [Alberta Family and S o c i a l Services] l e t t e r . I t was, "your money counts on t h i s meeting." I d i d n ' t have to read between the l i n e s , i t was a l l there . So, I d i d f ee l pressured 174 but, as i t turns out, i t was wel l worth i t . " Once they s tarted the program, responses to PSDN were very p o s i t i v e . In both December and March the most important aspects of the program were the ideas, information, guidance and support. The information a v a i l a b l e through PSDN was p a r t i c u l a r y important for t h i s group. Although some had general ideas and plans , they saw the need f o r , and appreciated, the guidance provided by PSDN. I t was seen as h e l p f u l , important, and t ime-saving: " . . . the he lp , the resources they have. They 1 re b a s i c a l l y up on everything you can do to bet ter yourse l f ." "I guess i t ' s the options, they have so many. They o f f er you a l l these sugges t ions . . . I th ink i t s that they have a wide range of mater ia ls to draw from. D i f f erent options for d i f f e r e n t people." A r e l a t e d strength of the program noted by the respondents i n December was the supportive aspect of the PSDN program. Although i n d i v i d u a l s had general ideas about what they wanted to do, they were apprec ia t ive of the encouragement and f ine - tun ing of t h e i r ideas and the fact that they could t a l k openly and f r e e l y about t h e i r 175 ideas with someone who was seen as non-judgemental and unbiased. I t was a lso very important for the respondents that they perceived the PSDN counse l lor as being on t h e i r s ide and working on the things that the c l i e n t s saw as important: "I already knew a l o t . I knew what I wanted to do and where I was going to go. I ju s t wanted to f ee l her out, and she f e l t me out about i f I was doing the r i g h t thing" "A l o t of personal support i n the sense of what I was d o i n g . . . I have found the program to be very s a t i s f a c t o r y i n the sense that they have s tar ted working with me where I needed to be working instead of where they f e l t somebody should s t a r t . " The respondents were a lso impressed i n December by the p r o f e s s i o n a l , non-threatening, one-on-one approach of PSDN. They stated that they f e l t comfortable with the counse l lors , could t a l k to them as f r i ends , and f e l t that they were treated with respect: "I l i k e d the approach, very p r o f e s s i o n a l , j u s t l i k e a f r i e n d . . . i t gives the person a good f e e l i n g about themselves, I don't th ink a person needs to be put down or f ee l bad about themselves." 176 ( i i ) March Interviews By March, a l l the respondents had made progress and s i g n i f i c a n t changes i n t h e i r s i t u a t i o n s . Three had s tar ted school i n January, one was enro l l ed i n u n i v e r s i t y for May, and the f i f t h was taking accounting courses and doing income taxes out of h i s home. The fee l ings of we l l -be ing were general ly character ized as p o s i t i v e , o p t i m i s t i c and exc i ted . For some, the improvement was s i g n i f i c a n t : "I'm f e e l i n g r e a l l y good r i g h t now. I t [acceptance in to un ivers i ty ] came through and I'm r e a l l y pleased, I was jus t bouncing. . .1 f ee l l i k e I'm doing something." "I don't have the pressures because I'm doing what I want to do now. I'm not s i t t i n g around doing nothing." "I get r e a l l y exci ted [about re turning to schoo l ] , I f e e l a tremendous amount of hope." A l l the respondents recommended PSDN and were s t i l l p o s i t i v e about the program i n March. To vary ing degrees, they f e l t that PSDN had played an important r o l e i n he lp ing them explore options and a l t e r n a t i v e s and he lp ing 177 put t h e i r ideas into ac t i on . Again, i t was important, even for those with f a i r l y wel l developed ideas, to have someone to t a l k to , to bounce ideas o f f of, and to plan with: "It was good to go [to PSDN], at l eas t I'm s i t t i n g down and t a l k i n g to someone and formulating what I want to d o . . . j u s t someone to l i s t e n was we l l worth i t . " "Certain things I hadn't even thought o f . . . I don't know i f I would have been quite as far i n my decision-making process i f i t weren't for the counse l lor ." The resources and information a v a i l a b l e through PSDN were s t i l l the most important elements of the program i n March for t h i s group: "[the counsel lor] was up on education, where to go, co l l eges , degrees, and she shared a l o t of that informat ion." "they have a l l these ideas and a l l these programs they know about. I don't th ink the average person would know about a l l the programs that are a v a i l a b l e . PSDN throws ideas l e f t , r i g h t and centre at you about what i s p o s s i b l e . . . " 178 For some of the respondents, PSDN was a lso perceived as having been able to help c l a r i f y and re f ine t h e i r general ideas into plans of ac t i on . PSDN was able to s i t down with these i n d i v i d u a l s and help them analyze a l l the poss ib le options and make feas ib le and r a t i o n a l dec is ions based on the information. The program was a lso seen as a s s i s t i n g rather than d i r e c t i n g , thus the respondents f e l t that the dec is ions were u l t imate ly t h e i r s and were more l i k e l y to take ownership over t h e i r ideas and the progress that they were able to make between December and March: "They b a s i c a l l y sorted i t out for me. When I decided I wanted to go back to school they d i d n ' t pressure me about me ideas, but they d i d leave i t open i n case I changed my mind." The supportive elements of the counse l lors and program were s t i l l an important v a r i a b l e for respondents i n March. The counsel lors were s t i l l perceived as non-threatening , personable and "easy to t a l k t o . " The program was general ly seen as h e l p f u l . Even the woman who came into the program already reg i s tered i n school s tated that the program had given her some usefu l information on daycare about which she had not been 179 aware. More than any other group, these respondents drew from the program what they needed and were apprec ia t ive of the general ambience and profess ional i sm of the program: "I don't know, jus t the atmosphere. They were there , w i l l i n g to help and i t wasn't l i k e "well , we're ge t t ing paid for t h i s so we r e a l l y don't give a s h i t whether you get anything or not ." I t was l i k e , "well , yeah, w e ' l l check t h i s out and w e ' l l check that out and w e ' l l take i t from there ." "I l i k e the fact that the counse l lor took the time to get to know me." "The counse l lor was personable, ju s t wonderful, i t was easy to discuss a l t ernat ives with her ." In summary, PSDN played an important, but d i f f e r e n t , r o l e for Pro-ac t ive p a r t i c i p a n t s . In contrast to the f i r s t group, these respondents d i d not use PSDN to e s t a b l i s h goals , rather they u t i l i z e d the counse l l ing , support, and information a v a i l a b l e through the program to develop plans for achieving the goals they had i n mind before they s tar ted the program. For t h i s group, PSDN was p r i m a r i l y used for information and ideas, support, c l a r i f i c a t i o n , explor ing a l t e r n a t i v e s , and he lp ing them 180 put t h e i r ideas into a c t i o n . Respondents i n t h i s category were the most s e l f - d i r e c t e d and capable of any of the groups. To varying degrees, they came into the program with an es tabl i shed framework, and high l e v e l s of mot ivat ion . Having es tabl i shed goals and f e e l i n g o p t i m i s t i c about the future t h i s group tended to have genera l ly p o s i t i v e fee l ings of wel l -be ing i n both December and March. Although for most of the respondents unemployment and s o c i a l ass istance was s t i l l a negative experience i t was seen as a short-term s i t u a t i o n and was thus much eas ier to take. These respondents a l so f e l t a l o t of contro l over the l i v e s and s i t u a t i o n , they d i d not f e e l "trapped" to the same degree as some of the other groups i n the study. A f t e r the i n i t i a l resentment and scept ic ism about t h e i r r e f e r r a l to PSDN, the respondents tended to be very open and recept ive to the program. PSDN was perceived as f u l f i l l i n g a d i f f e r e n t funct ion than for the other groups i n the study. I t was u t i l i z e d to f a c i l i t a t e and support self-development rather than i n i t i a t i n g and developing the process. Subjects tended to draw from the program what they needed to meet t h e i r objec t ives . The needs ranged from a l o t to very l i t t l e depending on how 181 far along the i n d i v i d u a l s were when they came into the program. The f l e x i b l e nature of PSDN allowed i t to respond to the i n d i v i d u a l needs of the c l i e n t . F l e x i b i l i t y and the target ing of c l i e n t s have been i d e n t i f i e d by the S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee (1988) and P e r r i n (1987) as important elements of programs deal ing with the long-term unemployed. The most important elements of the program for respondents tended to be the ideas, information, support and encouragement a v a i l a b l e through PSDN. The counse l lors were seen, again, as a l l i e s working towards goals that the c l i e n t s themselves had es tab l i shed . A very important aspect of the program was that the PSDN counse l lors were perceived as w i l l i n g to focus on whatever the c l i e n t s wanted to work on, not what the counse l lors thought was important. An example i s the t h i r t y - s i x year o ld woman who had qu i t her job because she f e l t burnt-out . Looking to her future , she perceived that she was on a sor t of " s p i r i t u a l journey" of s e l f -exp lora t ion . She was surpr ised and pleased that her PSDN counse l lor understood t h i s and encouraged her . For t h i s woman her future plans , her dec i s ion to go back to school , and her s p i r i t u a l i t y were a l l part of the same 182 package. The f l e x i b l e and supportive approach of the program and the understanding of the counse l lor , s i m i l a r to the f i r s t group, es tabl i shed a r e l a t i o n s h i p and rapport between the c l i e n t s and counse l lors that enabled them to explore, and work on, a v a r i e t y of issues ranging from s e l f - e x p l o r a t i o n to future jobs . Although the respondents came into the program with a general framework, ideas, and goals they s t i l l perceived PSDN as p lay ing an important r o l e i n t h e i r a c t u a l l y making the changes that they made between December and March. Res t r i c t ed P a r t i c i p a n t s Three respondents (16%) recommended PSDN but p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the program had not t rans la ted into a job or subs tant ia l progress i n any area. The group appreciated the e f f o r t s of PSDN, and the organizat ion was seen as h e l p f u l , but the e f f o r t s had not re su l t ed i n movement from e i t h e r an employment or personal perspect ive . A l l of the members of t h i s group were male with several serious employment and s o c i a l b a r r i e r s . One man was forty-seven year o l d , had a co l lege diploma, and, u n t i l two years ago, had worked for ten years i n a 183 managerial p o s i t i o n for the Alber ta Government. During the l a s t two years he had l o s t h i s job due to a serious d r i n k i n g problem, had been through a divorce and was having serious f i n a n c i a l problems. He stated that he could not say what problems caused what, he f e l t that they were a l l part of a package. The second respondent was a forty-two year o ld former labourer with a grade twelve education who had worked for most of h i s l i f e i n the construct ion f i e l d . He broke h i s back several years ago and could no longer do the types of jobs he once d i d , and had no s k i l l s or formal t r a i n i n g . He had been on s o c i a l ass is tance for many years , o f f and on. He was l i v i n g common-law with no dependent c h i l d r e n at home. His common-law spouse was a lso very i l l . The t h i r d respondent was a t h i r t y - o n e year o ld with a grade ten education, no s k i l l s , and an armed robbery conv ic t ion i n 1982. He was married with one c h i l d and a second on the way. He had been unemployed for several years and had been on s o c i a l ass istance for two years . (i) December Interviews The respondents i n t h i s category were the most 184 negat ive ly af fected by unemployment and had the lowest o v e r a l l percept ion of wel l -be ing i n both December and March. The forty-seven year o ld man described unemployment as "devastating." For a l l three men, work was seen a very important aspect of t h e i r l i v e s even though, p r i m a r i l y due to the ages and length of time out of the labour market, they had the most b a r r i e r s and problems of any of the groups i n the study. More than any other group, unemployment seemed to negat ive ly a f fec t t h e i r psycho-soc ia l we l l -be ing: "I have to work, I'm a very, very ac t ive p e r s o n . . . I f e e l bad about not being able to work." Being unemployed had a wide range of negative psycho-soc ia l e f f ec t s . Finances were a major problem. A l l the men discussed money troubles , problems with finance companies, and the problems that the lack of money created for them and t h e i r f a m i l i e s . The lack of money seemed to be at the root of a v a r i e t y of problems: "The things we'd l i k e to do we can' t do, because we have no money to do i t . . . w e ' d l i k e to take our daughter to the mal l l i k e most p a r e n t s . . . I f i n d myself i n the house too long, I get r e a l mad." " i t ' s very hard to make i t f i n a n c i a l l y , I'm d r i v i n g 185 a car now, I have no insurance. . .we're always borrowing money to get through." For a l l three men, t h e i r s tate of unemployment was perceived and i n t e r n a l i z e d as a s ign of personal f a i l u r e and inadequacy. This i s consistent with Lev in ' s f ind ing that found 90% of the unemployed i n d i v i d u a l s s tudied blamed themselves despite acknowledging the economic reasons for t h e i r l ayo f f s (Kirsh , 1983). These f ee l ings , along with f r u s t r a t i o n and hopelessness, was manifested by these men i n anger, f i g h t i n g with spouses, too much time, i s o l a t i o n , lowered se l f -worth , self-esteem and se l f -conf idence , depression and fee l ings of dependence, and a lack of contro l of themselves, t h e i r l i v e s and t h e i r futures: "I had to borrow f i f t y bucks o f f my wi fe ' s son, that h u r t s . . . w e do more f i g h t i n g now than when we had money. . . I get r e a l angry." "It causes f ights at home, large ones, I ' l l h i t the f r i d g e , slam the door, y e l l , scream...my s e l f esteem i s low r i g h t now, I have a daughter and another one on the way. When I want to give my family something I c a n ' t . . . W h a t am I going to do? I'm t h i r t y - o n e years o ld with a grade nine education. . .1 don't f ee l 186 too good about myself r i g h t now." Accompanying the extremely negative and low perceptions of wel l -be ing was a s trong, and recurrent , sense of r e j e c t i o n , external and i n t e r n a l pressure to get a job , and wanting to "just q u i t . " This observation i s s i m i l a r to the f indings of a B r i t i s h study by Buckland and MacGregor (1986) on long-term unemployed males. A l l three of the men re la ted how d i f f i c u l t i t was to face the constant re jec t ions and that , a f t er a whi le , they dea l t with i t by jus t not t r y i n g anymore or by turning to a l c o h o l . The men a lso spoke of the pressure on them from A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Serv ices , fami l i e s and fr iends to f i n d work: "Relatives give us a hard t i m e . . . t h e y 1 re put t ing pressure on m e . . . I ju s t sor t of lose i n t e r e s t i n i t [ t ry ing to f ind work], people jus t keep saying no, no, no, I'm get t ing t i r e d of hearing i t a l l my l i f e . . . I guess for a person, when somebody always says "no", then that person gives up. He doesn't bother t r y i n g . I'm pret ty c lose to that ." " . . . t a l k about r e j e c t i o n s , I remember ge t t ing nine i n the mai l one day, I used to go o f f and h i t the booze." 187 The respondents f e l t that there was a general need for t r a i n i n g programs and something "to b u i l d up a person's confidence." For support, two of the men looked to t h e i r fami l i e s and one man stated that he " l iked to deal with things himsel f ." For these men, being unemployed was an embarrassing and p a i n f u l personal i s sue . As much as poss ib le they l i k e d to keep t h e i r s i t u a t i o n s and problems to themselves. An i n t e r e s t i n g observation i s that although these men were often devastated by t h e i r unemployed s tatus , they d i d not resent Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Services to the extent that some of the other groups i n the study d i d . This may be a r e f l e c t i o n of the respondent's i n t e r n a l i z a t i o n and perceptions of themselves as f a i l u r e s or perhaps there was no expectation that S o c i a l Services should help them. The only reference to the Department was that i t s only concern i s ge t t ing people o f f ass i s tance . This observation i s consistent with P e r r i n ' s (1987) argument that s o c i a l ass istance tends to be provided on an a l l - o r - n o t h i n g bas i s . As one man noted, not only d i d s o c i a l ass istance benef i ts stop once he got a job but so d i d most of the re la ted s erv i ce s . He r e l a t e d a s i t u a t i o n where he had once found a low-paying 188 job that he took to keep busy while he looked for a bet ter job . The problem was that as soon as he took the job he f e l t deserted as welfare, and r e l a t e d serv ices , were i n s t a n t l y withdrawn. Awareness of resources var i ed i n the group. The respondent who had worked for the government for ten years was aware of a v a r i e t y of resources and serv i ce s . The other two men were aware of l i t t l e i n the c i t y for them, perhaps r e f l e c t i n g the fact that there are , i n f a c t , few serv ices and programs a v a i l a b l e for t h i s group of the unemployed i n Edmonton. As w e l l , i t should be pointed out that although these men acknowledged the need for t r a i n i n g or r e - t r a i n i n g there i s l i t t l e l i k e l i h o o d that they would rece ive Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Service funding because they would l i k e l y be considered e i t h e r "employable" or "too o l d . " A re la ted problem for these men i s that i n addi t ion to a lack of t r a i n i n g and r e -t r a i n i n g options there i s a t o t a l lack of support i n he lp ing them deal with some of the psycho-soc ia l employment b a r r i e r s associated with long-term unemployment l i k e a l c o h o l , heal th and c r i m i n a l records . I n i t i a l responses to PSDN i n December were quite p o s i t i v e . P r i o r to t h e i r r e f e r r a l , none of the 189 respondents had heard of PSDN or had any idea what the program was a l l about. One respondent thought the program was going to be a job-readiness program. Having worked for ten years he f e l t that he knew what was required i n a job search. He envisioned PSDN as another one of those classroom programs where c l i e n t s are t o l d how to get jobs and viewed these kinds of programs as time-consuming and a waste of h i s time: "I thought I ' d go and someone would t e l l me how to shine my s h o e s . . . I d i d n ' t need that , I d i d n ' t need someone to t e l l me to shave before I went to an interview." A l l three of the respondents, however, f e l t that they had "nothing to lose" by going to PSDN and f e l t that i t was "worth a shot." The men also noted that , i f nothing e l se , going to the program gave them something to do and provided an opportunity to get out of the house. Again, the f i n a n c i a l r e a l i t i e s of t h e i r existence on s o c i a l ass istance meant that none of them had a s o c i a l l i f e and they spent most of t h e i r time at home: "Anything tha t ' s going to h e l p . . . I ' 1 1 t r y anything that w i l l get me out of the house." In December, a l l three had been to see t h e i r 190 counse l lors and f e l t that the program was going to be h e l p f u l . Important elements were that the counse l lors l i s t e n e d and understood: "the counse l lor seemed to understand and i s t r y i n g to he lp ." "She was f r i e n d l y , I l i k e d her. She unders tood . . . I hope i t w i l l be a help get a job or an apprent iceship ." "I was very impressed...when I walked i n I thought "oh boy, I'm glad I came". . .1 got good informat ion." P r i o r to s t a r t i n g the program none of the men had expected the supportive element of PSDN and none of them probably would have considered i t as important. I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g that they d i d consider the morale support so important. One of the respondents noted how valuable i t was to him jus t to be t o l d that he was not alone i n not being able to f i n d a job: "I wasn't looking for i t [support] , hadn't thought of i t . . . i t was a l i t t l e boost, ju s t knowing that i t wasn't p a r t i c u l a r to me." In December, expectations about what PSDN could do v a r i e d . The two o lder men f e l t they were capable of ge t t ing jobs on t h e i r own and thought PSDN might be able 191 to help them with leads and contacts . The younger respondent was unsure about what the program could do for him, although he was o p t i m i s t i c . ( i i ) March Interviews The March interviews r e f l e c t e d no p o s i t i v e changes for the respondents. Indeed, for a l l three , the s i t u a t i o n s were worse i n March and the downward s p i r a l was cont inuing . The forty-seven year o l d former government employee with a dr ink ing problem had been forced to leave h i s l a s t accommodation and now was l i v i n g i n a halfway house for a l c o h o l i c s . In December he had sa id that he got h i s support from h i s fami ly; i n March he sa id that h i s family d id not understand h i s s i t u a t i o n and that he was get t ing h i s support from the people i n the halfway house. His general wel l -be ing was worse i n March than i n December and he was even more f rus tra ted and despondent. For t h i s man, the job-search i t s e l f seemed to be developing into some sort of an obsession. He was almost compulsive i n h i s search for a job even though the chances of h i s working seemed to be growing more and more remote, p a r t i c u l a r l y for the type of job he had before. During the three months he had worked 192 d e l i v e r i n g p i zza but he stated that he had q u i t , although he gave no reasons why. The fortunes of the forty-two year o l d former labourer had also worsened between December and March. He had been charged with frauding Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Services for $10,000 i n 1988 when he had worked and c o l l e c t e d s o c i a l ass istance at the same time. He admitted to the crime but argued that even with the $10,000 h i s income was s t i l l below the poverty l i n e . In a d d i t i o n , he couldn' t sleep at night from the pain i n h i s back and h i s rent had gone up t h i r t y d o l l a r s but he could not a f ford to move. The t h i r d respondent had gotten a part - t ime job d e l i v e r i n g p i z z a . He was the only one who could be described as having changed h i s s i t u a t i o n . Even though the job was low-paying he described himself as b e t t e r -o f f because i t got him out of the house and gave him a break from h i s wife , c h i l d r e n and problems: "It 's not as bad as i t was, I'm working so I'm not home a l l the t ime." Although none of the men had made much r e a l progress they s t i l l f e l t that attending PSDN had been a worthwhile and p o s i t i v e experience. The counsel lors were perceived 193 as being h e l p f u l and the support of the program was s t i l l seen as important: "They were h e l p f u l . . . easy to t a l k t o . . . I ' m glad I w e n t . . . h e l p f u l but not h e l p f u l , you know." "I l i k e the idea that there i s someone out there w i l l i n g to t r y to h e l p . . .you're not ge t t ing any help from w e l f a r e . . . a t l eas t you get a b i t of h o p e . . . i f you don't have hope, you don't have nothing." "[the counsel lor] was very p o s i t i v e . . . I f e l t good a f t er I ta lked to her, I got a boost." One of the respondents a lso noted that PSDN had r e f e r r e d him to two programs of which he had been unaware and they had turned out to be quite usefu l for him because he was able to get free resume work and photocopying done. The same respondent, although he recommended the program, a lso f e l t that he had been l e t -down because, i n December, h i s counse l lor had overstated the p o s s i b i l i t i e s for him. He f e l t that the PSDN counse l lor had assured him an interview that never mater ia l i z ed : "It was a b i t of a let-down regarding the job I d i d n ' t get, the counse l lor had promised me an interview." 194 The other two respondents d id not express fee l ings of being let-down. The t h i r t y - o n e year o ld was somewhat apathet ic about h i s experience. Although he had been hopeful i n December that PSDN might be h e l p f u l he had not been over ly o p t i m i s t i c . In March, the i n i t i a l hope had given way to a sort of despondency. There was, however, no sense of anger or disappointment r e l a t e d by t h i s respondent. In many ways, the lack of any progress may simply have been jus t another experience that f i t s into the pat tern of r e j e c t i o n and d i s i l lus ionment that has character ized h i s l i f e to date. The t h i r d respondent who had been charged with fraud also d id not f ee l let-down by PSDN. He admitted that he r e a l l y had not devoted much of h i s energy to anything other than "try ing to get t h i s mess straightened out." In summary, Res tr i c t ed respondents were men with complex and i n t e r r e l a t e d problems and b a r r i e r s l i k e c r i m i n a l charges, heal th problems, a lcohol i sm, and sporadic work h i s t o r i e s . Although these men were motivated they were severely l i m i t e d by capaci ty and opportun i t i e s . This lack of contro l and options had a v a r i e t y of negative e f fec ts and repercussions i n many areas of t h e i r l i v e s . From a v a r i e t y of perspect ives , 195 they were "trapped" by problems l i k e age, i n s t a b i l i t y , f i n a n c i a l d i f f i c u l t i e s , and c r i m i n a l records . The respondents were the most negat ive ly af fected by unemployment. I t was devastating to t h e i r self-esteem and to t h e i r outlook on themselves, t h e i r l i v e s and t h e i r f ee l ings about the future . They a lso seemed to deal with the s i t u a t i o n i n s e l f - d e s t r u c t i v e ways and often manifested t h e i r fee l ings of inadequacy and hopelessness i n anger, lash ing out at those c lose to them or substance abuse. The f indings are consistent with Buckland and Macgregor's (1986) study: The e f fec t s of unemployment were, however, the same for a l l men: loss of confidence; s t r a i n on r e l a t i o n s h i p s , d i s i l lu s ionment ; and a f e e l i n g of helplessness and i s o l a t i o n . (p. 189) Perhaps the most devastat ing aspect of the s i t u a t i o n s for these men, besides the hopelessness, was the fee l ings that they had no contro l over t h e i r l i v e s . The ir l i v e s had become so downtrodden, negative and complicated that they could see no future for themselves and t h e i r f a m i l i e s . As the forty-two year o l d man s a i d , " i f you don't have hope you don't have nothing." In sharp contrast to the Reactive and Pro-ac t ive groups 196 these respondents seemed to hold out l i t t l e hope for the future and the e f fec t was devastat ing. Perhaps the saddest example i s the man who continues to churn out resume a f t e r resume, and countless r e j e c t i o n s , despite the increas ing ly diminishing l i k e l i h o o d of ever f i n d i n g , or keeping, any sort of decent and wel l -paying job . These f indings would seem to re in force the various s tudies (Schlionsky, Preu and Rose, 1937; Ba l loch , Hume, Jones and Westland, 1985; Krahn, Lowe and Tanner, 1984; Fagin , 1984) that have noted r e l a t i o n s h i p s between prolonged unemployment and depression, powerlessness, v io l ence , b i t t e r n e s s , and fee l ings of hopelessness. In add i t ion to the other problems i n t h e i r l i v e s , these men had no opt ions . Categorized as "employable" by A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services , and not e l i g i b l e for t r a i n i n g or r e t r a i n i n g , they had no choice but to look for work even though the l i k e l i h o o d of t h e i r ever f ind ing any sort of work, l e t alone any sor t of s a t i s f y i n g work, i s remote with t h e i r present l e v e l s of education and s k i l l s . S i m i l a r to studies by The S o c i a l Planning Counci l of Metropol i tan Toronto (1988, 1989), The Canadian Counci l on S o c i a l Development (1989), and The S o c i a l Assistance Review Committee (1988), the 197 f indings of t h i s study suggest that there i s an urgent need for more re levant and s p e c i f i c programs and serv ices targeted for middle-aged and long-term unemployed s o c i a l ass is tance r e c i p i e n t s . As M i t c h e l l (1988) notes: The hardships experienced by o lder w o r k e r s . . . are not news; most have been i d e n t i f i e d and the subject of ana lys i s s ince the l a s t recess ion and yet , there i s a dearth of p o l i c y and programme d irec ted at r e i n t e g r a t i n g the o lder worker in to the employed labour force , (p. 10) PSDN i s l i m i t e d i n what i t can do for t h i s group. The program i s p r i m a r i l y a r e f e r r a l serv ice and i s l i m i t e d by the a v a i l a b i l i t y of services and resources. A perhaps s u r p r i s i n g f ind ing i n the study i s that , despite these l i m i t a t i o n s , PSDN was s t i l l perceived as p lay ing an important ro l e and was recommended by the respondents. PSDN was seen as "wanting to help" and being on "the ir s ide ." The importance of formal and regular contact , p a r t i c u l a r l y for the long-term unemployed, with i n d i v i d u a l s who can provide "sympathy, advice and guidance" has been noted by H i l l (1977) and K i r s h (1983) . The program also seemed to give some hope to respondents. As the forty-two year o ld man pointed 198 out i n March: "I l i k e the idea that there i s someone out there w i l l i n g to t r y to he lp . . .you're not ge t t ing any help from welfare, at l eas t you've got a b i t of hope, a b i t of l i g h t . " Reluctant P a r t i c i p a n t s Three respondents d id not recommend the PSDN program. They d i d not f ee l the program had been useful and t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n , and u t i l i z a t i o n of, the program was minimal to n i l . The reasons for the non-p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the program v a r i e d . There were two females and one male i n t h i s category. One woman was twenty-eight years o ld l i v i n g common-law with a three year o ld c h i l d from a previous r e l a t i o n s h i p . She had a grade nine education supplemented by some outdated computer courses. She l a s t worked i n 1988 and has been on s o c i a l ass istance for several years . The second woman was a t h i r t y year o l d s ing l e mother (one two-year o ld ch i ld ) with a grade ten education and no formal s k i l l s . She l a s t worked i n 1988 and has been on s o c i a l ass istance for two years . The t h i r d respondent was a twenty-f ive year o ld 199 s ing l e male with a grade ten education. He had not worked s ince 1985 and has been on s o c i a l ass is tance for seven years . He reported that he had no c r i m i n a l record or substance abuse problems. (i) December Interviews The i n d i v i d u a l s i n t h i s group were probably the l eas t negat ive ly a f fec ted , o v e r a l l , by unemployment. A l l three seemed r e l a t i v e l y wel l adapted and comfortable with t h e i r s i t u a t i o n s . Both women stated that t h e i r fami l i e s came f i r s t and that although they d i d not neces sar i ly l i k e being unemployed they were p o s i t i v e about the job of r a i s i n g t h e i r c h i l d r e n . They both noted, however, that unemployment d id tend to i s o l a t e and stagnate them at t imes. The twenty-eight year o ld woman added that she f e l t that being unemployed gave her "too much time on her hands" and was s t r e s s f u l and negat ive ly af fected her r e l a t i o n s h i p with her young son: "It 's not that I don't have time to do things because I do have time. Too much time at t imes. I 've got too much time on my hand i s what i t works out to . Being unemployed I don't have any reason to go to bed ear ly at night so then I have no reason 200 to get up ear ly i n the morning." The other s ing le mother f e l t that she d i d "quite n ice ly" on s o c i a l ass is tance . She noted that she had only worked i n low-paying "dead-end" jobs so being on ass is tance was not very problematic for her from a f i n a n c i a l perspect ive . From a psycho-soc ia l perspect ive , she was very p o s i t i v e about her r o l e as a mother and d i d not have some of the g u i l t or esteem problems that some of the other respondents had. She d i d , however, f ee l pressure from her mother and fr iends who f e l t that she should be working: "My fr iends w i l l ask me, "aren't you going to work-what do you plan on doing? Are you going to stay on welfare a l l your l i f e ? " The twenty-f ive year o ld male f e l t that unemployment had no negative e f fec ts on him, f i n a n c i a l or otherwise. Nor d i d he perceive that there were any b a r r i e r s or problems that stood i n the way of h i s ge t t ing a job: "If you want a job , you get a job . I f you don't want a job , you can do whatever you want. I f I want i t bad enough I can go and get i t . I f I don't want i t , j u s t leave i t as i t i s . . . I ' m jus t not in teres ted i n working r i g h t now." 201 I t was never made c l e a r why t h i s respondent seemed so s a t i s f i e d with h i s s i t u a t i o n and so unmotivated to even consider looking at some a l t e r n a t i v e s . He would not e laborate as to why he was so unaffected by h i s prolonged unemployed and minimal income (as a s ing le "employable" he reported that he received $490.00 per month). On the surface he would seem to be i n the same p o s i t i o n as the men i n the Res tr i c t ed category but he manifested none of t h e i r anger, f r u s t r a t i o n or low perceptions of we l l -be ing . There was l i t t l e i n d i c a t i o n from the interviews that he f u l f i l l e d any sor t of p o s i t i v e r o l e , as for example many of the s ing le mothers i n the study d i d . This would seem to go against almost a l l the research on the e f fects of long-term unemployment and s o c i a l ass istance dependency. Even ignoring the s e r i o u s l y r e s t r i c t e d f inances, he displayed none of the anxiousness, depression, boredom, withdrawal, or lowered self-esteem that B r i a r , F i e d l e r , Sheen and Kamps (1980b) noted were common responses to unemployment for a l l ages. Although i t i s only speculat ion , two explanations seem p l a u s i b l e . The f i r s t i s that he had been on ass is tance for so long, and from such an ear ly age (approximately eighteen) that he was t o t a l l y adapted to h i s s i t u a t i o n . 202 While t h i s would expla in some of h i s adjustment to unemployment i t would not expla in the almost t o t a l lack of some of the e f fects that affected other long-term unemployed i n d i v i d u a l s i n the study, p a r t i c u l a r l y the f inances . The most notable contrast i s with the twenty-three year o ld s ing le male i n the Pro-ac t ive group who f e l t that unemployment had affected him f i n a n c i a l l y and had gotten him into a r u t . The second poss ib le explanat ion, and perhaps the more p l a u s i b l e , i s that he was working on the s ide or that he worked occas iona l ly to supplement h i s income from s o c i a l ass i s tance . This respondent d i d , however, mention that he would l i k e to upgrade h i s education. He would a lso l i k e to see more supported t r a i n i n g programs and support for the unemployed although he d id not perceive himself as needing support: "Sure i t s easy to f i l l out an a p p l i c a t i o n form, but how about the turn-downs? There's not enough emotional support for when you get turned down so many times you can' t get a job . People need that , they need t h e i r confidence." Both women perceived a lack of confidence, lack of t ranspor ta t ion and daycare as major employment b a r r i e r s 203 fac ing them. One of the women added that she f e l t i s o l a t e d and t h i s resu l ted i n a lack of information a v a i l a b l e to her about options that she might wish to explore . Support for one of the women came from her mother and for the other i t came from her boyfr iend . T h e i r were i n d i c a t i o n s , as w i l l be discussed i n the March interviews sec t ion , that t h i s support might have been somewhat t r a n s i t o r y and unstable . An i n t e r e s t i n g observation noted by one of the respondents i s the need for d i f f e r e n t kinds of support. The t h i r t y year o ld woman noted a d i f ference between the kind of support she gets from her mother and the k ind she f e l t she needed from an organizat ion l i k e PSDN. She stated that "mom i s okay for moral support and a l l but I need to t a l k to somebody that knows." This d i f ference i n the kinds of support ( s o c i a l , p h y s i c a l , mater ia l and psychological ) has been noted by K i r s h (1983). One of the respondents brought up the t o p i c of the r o l e of A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Serv ices . The t h i r t y year o ld woman perceived S o c i a l Services as something to be avoided and as general ly being a negative experience. She saw her s o c i a l worker as creat ing s tress and being more of a hinderance than a help: 204 "I don't consider the s o c i a l worker any form of h e l p . . . y o u can' t get through to them. . . they s t res s , they a c t u a l l y avoid meeting you, so i f you want counse l l ing or whatever, f i n d somebody e l se ." I n i t i a l responses to the PSDN r e f e r r a l v a r i e d . P r i o r to the r e f e r r a l , none of the respondents had heard of PSDN. One of them "figured they were going to teach me to wri te resumes, I 've done that before ." In December, only two respondents had s tar ted the program. The t h i r d had not but thought i t might be i n t e r e s t i n g and that i t was "worth a t r y . " The male respondent's i n i t i a l reac t ion was negative. He f e l t that he had been pressured into attending the program and admitted that he was going only to appease h i s s o c i a l worker and to stay on s o c i a l ass is tance . He had no in tent ion of doing anything i n the program and was only going to go "through the motions": " . . .because i t wasn't on my own free choice . I f I would have had my own free choice of tak ing i t , I would have-but not when I was forced to by my s o c i a l worker . . . I •11 jus t go through the motions." The t h i r d respondent's i n i t i a l impressions of PSDN were quite p o s i t i v e . She had been re ferred to the 205 program by her s o c i a l worker and f e l t , i m p l i c i t l y , that she had to attend but she a lso f e l t that she "needed to go." In December, she was enjoying the program, p a r t i c u l a r l y the f r i e n d l y approach, counse l l ing and the a v a i l a b l e information: "It makes you fee l at h o m e . . . i t s counse l l ing , i t s t a l k i n g . . .they a lso take the time to t a l k about yourse l f and other things besides work l i k e how I f e e l about myself i n general . . .What I would l i k e to do with the counse l lor i s get a l l the information on a l l the th ing on school programs and th ings , br ing i t to my counse l lor , have her s i t me down and t a l k about each one. Just to l e t me know what i s out there ." ( i i ) March Interviews In March, there were few percept ib le changes i n the s i t u a t i o n s of these respondents. Feel ings of wel l -be ing were genera l ly about the same. The twenty-eight year o l d woman had found a part- t ime job but her excitement was tempered somewhat by a perceived lack of support and other problems that developed for her as a r e s u l t of the job . Daycare was s t i l l a problem and she now perceived 206 her boyfr iend as g iv ing l i t t l e support i n terms of he lp ing around the house or car ing for the c h i l d . This lack of support, and often unstable patterns of support, for working mothers has been noted i n several studies (Smith, 1984; Bonnar, 1987; Evans, 1984; Googins & Burden; K i r s h , 1983; B r i a r , Hoff & Seek, 1987; Voydanoff, 1987) . In March, two respondents were negative about PSDN and one had mixed f ee l ings . The male was s t i l l negative about the program and d id not recommend the program. He perceived that h i s s i t u a t i o n , and h i s f ee l ings of w e l l -being, had not changed at a l l . He had seen h i s counse l lor three times but the meetings had been of no benef i t . His evaluat ion of PSDN r e f l e c t e d t h i s lack of perceived usefulness: "I d i d n ' t do anything i n any type of a r e a s . . . i t hasn' t done anything for m e . . . I j u s t don't l i k e the job counse l lor I got. She's not t r y i n g to f i n d me a job or a n y t h i n g . . . I don't l i k e none of i t . " The women who had not s tarted the program i n December, and who had found the part- t ime job , was a lso negative about PSDN. She had met with her counse l lor three times between December and March but d i d not 207 recommend the program. Her c r i t i c i s m s were that she was never r e a l l y able to understand what the program was about or what i t was supposed to do. She stressed that she had found the job on her own and d i d not see PSDN as p lay ing a r o l e i n i t . The PSDN counse l lor had re ferred her to Employment Services for the Disabled (she has epilepsy) but she never followed up on the program. She f e l t that i t was an inappropriate r e f e r r a l . O v e r a l l , she d i d not f ee l that she had benef i t ted from PSDN. She f e l t that the program might be "useful for some people, depending on t h e i r circumstances." She never r e a l l y understood the purpose of the program or what i t was a l l about: "I don't f ee l as though I got too much out of i t . I d i d n ' t do a n y t h i n g . . . t h e counse l lor d i d n ' t boost my c o n f i d e n c e . . . I wasn't sure what the whole th ing was about, i t ' s supposed to f i n d a person a job or something, I'm not sure exact ly what they are supposed to do." The t h i r d respondent had mixed fee l ings about her experience with PSDN. There had been no changes i n her s i t u a t i o n or wel l -be ing from December to March. She was s t i l l attending PSDN and stated that she was g lad , 208 p r i m a r i l y because she perceived h e r s e l f as t imid and as a p r o c r a s t i n a t o r . She admitted that the program kept her motivated and gave her the boost she sometimes lacked: "I am glad because I do need someone to give me a push, to keep me aware, to keep me going otherwise I ' l l ju s t lose i t and th ink about i t for a year or two." At the same time, however, t h i s respondent admitted that she was attending the program b a s i c a l l y to keep her s o c i a l worker happy. O v e r a l l , she f e l t that the program was somewhat of a let-down. She had thought i n December that PSDN would have a l i s t of jobs and that she would be job-p laced . She f e l t that her counse l lor was pushing school too much and admitted to having an overwhelming fear about going back to school . Her experiences i n high school had been traumatiz ing and negative. O v e r a l l , she recommended PSDN "for people who are looking at school , i f t h a t ' s not what you want they can' t do much for you." She added that "there should be more out there for people who do not want to go back to school ." In summary, the three months i n PSDN appeared to have l i t t l e or no tangib le r e s u l t s for the respondents 209 i n the Reluctant p a r t i c i p a n t category. They general ly saw l i t t l e purpose i n p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the program and t h e i r ac tua l u t i l i z a t i o n of the program was n e g l i g i b l e . I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g that although a l l three , to varying degrees, perceived no benef i ts or value from t h e i r involvement i n the program they were s t i l l attending the program i n March. This includes the respondent who stated i n December that he was f u l l y intending to "float" through the program. An i n t e r e s t i n g dilemma for PSDN i s how to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between those who are "going through the motions" and those who might only need a l i t t l e more support or encouragement before making some r e a l progress . The r e s u l t s from t h i s study seem to suggest that there are i n d i v i d u a l s who stay i n the program for long periods of time but who are not b e n e f i t t i n g , and may not even want to be b e n e f i t t i n g , from t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the program. One of the r e s u l t s suggested by the respondents i n t h i s category i s that PSDN can i n i t i a t e few changes for i n d i v i d u a l s who do not want to change. The d i f f i c u l t y i s how to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between those who are p e r f e c t l y s a t i s f i e d with t h e i r present s i t u a t i o n and those who might want to change but jus t need a l i t t l e more support. This problem i s m u l t i p l i e d when people are 210 attending the program under duress and cannot f r e e l y express to t h e i r s o c i a l worker or PSDN counse l lor that they r e a l l y are not interes ted i n the program, for whatever reasons. The responses of the respondents to PSDN are d i s t i n c t and d iverse . The twenty-f ive year o l d male admitted that at no point d i d he ever intend to meaningfully p a r t i c i p a t e i n the program. He was p e r f e c t l y happy with h i s l i f e at present and had no in ten t ion of changing. The other two respondents were less b la tant i n the reasons for t h e i r lack of p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n PSDN and are more d i f f i c u l t to analyze. Both women, i n contrast to the male, were open to the program i n December. Both women put t h e i r fami l i e s f i r s t but, at the same time, wanted to make changes to bet ter themselves, to get o f f s o c i a l ass is tance , and to be able to o f f er t h e i r c h i l d r e n a bet ter l i f e . They both, however, appeared to have l i t t l e support, low l eve l s of se l f -conf idence and self-esteem, and problems with daycare and t ranspor ta t ion . This group was d i s t i n c t from the other groups from a v a r i e t y of perspect ives . Unl ike most of the i n d i v i d u a l s i n the other categories , these i n d i v i d u a l s 211 e i t h e r d i d not understand, or accept, the r o l e and l i m i t a t i o n s of PSDN. They could not see the purpose i n a program that was not based on g i v i n g them a job . The main d i f ferences between them and the i n d i v i d u a l s i n the R e s t r i c t e d p a r t i c i p a t i o n category i s that they had more capaci ty for change (they d i d not appear to have the l i f e s t y l e problems that those i n the Res t r i c t ed category had) and a lso had more opportunit ies a v a i l a b l e to them i n terms of t r a i n i n g or school . Indeed, the s o c i a l worker for the o lder woman was pushing her to go back to school . There appeared to be a d i f ference of opinion between t h i s woman and her PSDN counse l lor , who was pushing her to go back to school even though she was t e r r i f i e d about the prospect . I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g to speculate whether PSDN would eventual ly play a r o l e and be more e f f e c t i v e l y u t i l i z e d by t h i s c l i e n t or whether she would continue to , for a l l intents and purposes, to "go through the motions." A dilemma for PSDN i s how to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between a c l i e n t l i k e t h i s who i s s i t t i n g on the fence and the c l i e n t who never has any intent ions of p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n , and u t i l i z i n g , the program. One th ing that does seem c l e a r i s that PSDN can have l i t t l e impact on those who t r u l y do not want to change. 212 In the other groups, p a r t i c u l a r y the Reactive and Pro-ac t ive groups, i f the c l i e n t s d i d not want to change i n i t i a l l y they came ,a t some po int , to perceive that they could make some changes i n t h e i r l i v e s , that those changes were worth s t r i v i n g f o r , and that PSDN could play a r o l e i n those changes. Although i t i s far from c l e a r , i t would seem that the respondents i n t h i s category were never convinced that PSDN could get them where they wanted to go. Perhaps they were p e r f e c t l y happy with t h e i r present s i t u a t i o n or perhaps they j u s t had something i n mind that PSDN could not help them wi th . 213 Chapter VI CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS As noted i n the f i r s t chapter, "adapting a p o l i c y that recognizes no causes leads to no solut ions" (Ellwood, 1988:87). This statement would seem to character ize the present s t r u c t u r a l and p h i l o s o p h i c a l approach towards the unemployed on s o c i a l ass i s tance . The d i scuss ion about how soc iety deals with unemployment and s o c i a l ass istance i s , fundamentally, about values and ideo log ies . One of the strongest impressions derived from the process of researching and put t ing t h i s projec t together i s that there i s a dearth of contemporary research. The present t h e o r e t i c a l framework for our understanding of unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance i s based predominantly on research undertaken i n the 1930"s. There i s l i t t l e information and studies about the e f fec t s of unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance i n the 1990's. One of the more important observations generated by t h i s study i s the need for a d d i t i o n a l s tudies and 214 research i n the whole area of unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance dependency, and p a r t i c u l a r l y the psycho-s o c i a l rami f i ca t ions of the unemployment experience of i n d i v i d u a l s . Despite the tremendous s o c i a l , economic and i n d i v i d u a l costs there i s a g l a r i n g lack of knowledge and understanding, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n r e l a t i o n to the Canadian context. The p o l i c i e s and approach of soc ie ty toward the unemployed and s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s appear to be based on the biases and percept ions , often uninformed, of policy-makers with l i t t l e , or no, understanding or comprehension of the array and complexit ies of the issues and problems being faced by the unemployed. I t seems as though many of the p o l i c i e s concerning unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance are based on perceptions and i d e o l o g i c a l dogma rather than fact or informed r a t i o n a l e . A l l too often, policy-makers forget , or choose to ignore, the human element of these i ssues . In our soc ie ty the unemployed on s o c i a l ass is tance are at "the bottom of the heap" and the lack of research and study i n t h i s area i s perhaps a r e f l e c t i o n of the lack of concern and i n t e r e s t . One impl i ca t ion of the study i s that the unemployed on s o c i a l ass istance have a l o t to say about the way they are being treated and have a 215 v a r i e t y of opinions about what they require and need i n order to reach the goals that they wish to reach. O v e r a l l , t h i s study and the l i t e r a t u r e (Rode, 1987; Goodwin, 1972; S c h i l l e r , 1973; Sanger, 1979; Grann, Olendzki , & Goodrich, 1972) suggest that t h e i r goals would seem to be very s i m i l a r to the goals of soc ie ty at large and are based on being independent, s e l f - s u f f i c i e n t and contr ibut ing members of soc ie ty . Impediments would seem to be imposed s t r u c t u r a l l y and usua l ly r e s u l t from a lack of opportunity , he lp , support and bureaucrat ic i n e f f i c i e n c y and ineptness rather than any not ion of laz iness or "moral decay." A f i n d i n g , supported by the l i t e r a t u r e (Soc ia l Ass is tance Review Committee, 1988; Adams, 1983; Manitoba, 1983) , i s that the unemployed on s o c i a l ass is tance tend to be i s o l a t e d and c u t - o f f from the mainstream. The r e s u l t s a lso suggest that there i s a tendency for i n d i v i d u a l s to i n t e r n a l i z e fee l ings of i n f e r i o r i t y and powerlessness and to adapt to t h e i r s i t u a t i o n . This disengagement and loss of motivation i s o l a t e and segregate the unemployed from economic and s o c i a l p a r t i c i p a t i o n . I f the goal of s o c i a l ass is tance systems and policy-makers i s to become more ac t ive i n e f f o r t s to 216 re - in tegra te i n d i v i d u a l s into the workforce, an issue that needs to be addressed i s how to connect wi th , and approach, the unemployed ( p a r t i c u l a r l y the long-term unemployed) on s o c i a l ass is tance . PSDN can be seen as an innovative model for dea l ing with the unemployed on s o c i a l ass i s tance . The program's s t r u c t u r a l and i n d i v i d u a l i z e d approach i s able to provide d i f f e r e n t l e v e l s of intervent ions and serv ices depending on the needs and problems i d e n t i f i e d by the c l i e n t . These needs, from the ind ica t ions of t h i s study, are broadly defined by the r e c i p i e n t and can range across a d iverse array of problems, i ssues , and s i t u a t i o n s . From a p r a c t i c e and p o l i c y perspect ive , a s i g n i f i c a n t f ind ing i s the degree to which people responded to the i n d i v i d u a l i z e d , p o s i t i v e , motivat ing, empowering, and supportive approach of the PSDN program. A c l e a r and consistent theme, i n t h i s sample, i s that A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services has l i t t l e c r e d i b i l i t y among those on s o c i a l ass is tance . This not only suggests that the present approach towards s o c i a l ass is tance i s inadequate, i n e f f i c i e n t and counter-product ive , but a l so suggests that i f A lber ta Family and S o c i a l Services wants to take a more pro -ac t ive approach there w i l l have to be 217 a major p h i l o s o p h i c a l and s t r u c t u r a l r e - t h i n k i n g of s o c i a l ass i s tance , how i t i s d e l i v e r e d , and how i t approaches and deals with the unemployed. For most of the respondents, PSDN was accepted i f for no other reason than i t represents a d i f f e r e n t approach than Alber ta Family and S o c i a l Serv ices . C l i e n t s can draw what they need or want from the program, rather than someone e l se ' s perception of what they need. C l i e n t s responded to the e f f o r t s of PSDN and expressed a wi l l ingness to p a r t i c i p a t e . For the most p a r t , the general ambience and t r u s t developed between c l i e n t and counse l lor seemed to motivate and st imulate people to work towards goals that they themselves had es tab l i shed . PSDN was seen by most people as an a l l y working with c l i e n t s towards reso lv ing the i n t e r r e l a t e d , d iverse , and often complex problems and b a r r i e r s that they face. Four categories of c l i e n t p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the PSDN program were i d e n t i f i e d . Reactive p a r t i c i p a n t s general ly came into the PSDN program with few goals and u t i l i z e d the e n t i r e spectrum of the services provides by the program, s t a r t i n g with goa l - s e t t ing and career p lanning . Pro-ac t ive p a r t i c i p a n t s s tarted the program with a framework for change already es tabl i shed , usua l ly school , 218 and extracted from the program the services and resources ( p a r t i c u l a r l y counse l l ing , ideas and information) that would help them reach t h e i r goals . R e s t r i c t e d p a r t i c i p a n t s came into the program w i l l i n g and open to change but were severely r e s t r i c t e d by an a p p a l l i n g lack of app l i cab le services and programs to f i t t h e i r needs. Reluctant p a r t i c i p a n t s general ly f e l t forced into p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the program and perceived l i t t l e benef i t from t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n . They were e i t h e r happy with t h e i r present s i t u a t i o n and d i d not see a need to change at t h i s p a r t i c u l a r time or d i d not understand, or accept, the r o l e and l i m i t a t i o n s of PSDN. The f indings suggest that programs and p o l i c i e s need to acknowledge the d i v e r s i t y and heterogeneity of the needs and problems faced by the unemployed, and p a r t i c u l a r l y the long-term unemployed on s o c i a l ass i s tance . There would seem to be benef i t s i n developing programs for the unemployed on s o c i a l ass is tance that are i n d i v i d u a l and f l e x i b l e i n approach. There may be a v a r i e t y of benef i ts i n b u i l d i n g programs around the needs of the c l i e n t s rather than t r y i n g to force them into s i n g l e - t r a c k programs that may or may not be able to meet t h e i r needs. There may a lso be benef i t s 219 i n b u i l d i n g s trateg ies and mul t i - face ted approaches for dea l ing with the problems of the unemployed on s o c i a l ass is tance rather than expecting one type of program to meet a l l the poss ib le problems that one c l i e n t might be fac ing i n h i s or her l i f e . The f indings a lso give some i n d i c a t i o n that there i s a need for an "opportunity planner" r o l e advocated i n the S o c i a l Ass is tance Review Committee report (1988). There would a lso appear to be a need for programs that reach out and provide information to r e c i p i e n t s who have become i s o l a t e d and stagnant from years of unemployment and s o c i a l ass istance dependency. I f done from a perspect ive of help and i n a non-threatening manner t h i s study suggests that i t not only has a v a r i e t y of p o s i t i v e e f fec t s but i t i s welcomed and appreciated by r e c i p i e n t s who often fee l abandoned. The f indings of t h i s study caut ion , however, that t r a d i t i o n a l bureaucrat ic s o c i a l ass is tance s tructures may have to make a v a r i e t y of changes around i t s image and approach before any opportunity planner concept i s l i k e l y to work i n p r a c t i c e or be accepted by c l i e n t s . This i s an i n t e r e s t i n g issue and a r i c h area for further research and work. An argument that needs to be explored i s the p o t e n t i a l 220 benef i t s (cost /benef i t analys is) of having s o c i a l workers t r a i n e d i n the dynamics of poverty and unemployment working with s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s rather than " f i n a n c i a l a i d c lerks" who may not have a grasp of the complex nature of unemployment and s o c i a l ass is tance dependency. PSDN d i d not benef i t a l l the respondents. Although the majori ty p a r t i c i p a t e d i n the program to some extent, a minor i ty d i d not. Despite having the capaci ty and the opportunity for making changes the l a t t e r respondents chose, for a v a r i e t y of reasons, to only "go through the motions" of meaningful p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the program. The f indings may suggest that some i n d i v i d u a l s are s a t i s f i e d with t h e i r existence on s o c i a l ass i s tance , or f ee l f u l f i l l e d i n other areas of t h e i r l i v e s , and perceive no need to change. They may also suggest that not everyone can r e l a t e to a program l i k e PSDN and a d i f f e r e n t approach (e .g. more job-placement orientated) may be needed for some r e c i p i e n t s . The f indings may also suggest that there would seem to be l i t t l e hope of motivat ing people to change who do not want to change and that r e s u l t s are best achieved when programs focus on those who want to p a r t i c i p a t e . This i s p a r t i c u l a r l y 221 re levant when i t i s considered that there are i n s u f f i c i e n t employment programs at present to serv ice a l l those who might want to u t i l i z e them. Although the typology i s useful i n suggesting that a p o s i t i v e , i n d i v i d u a l and empowering model can be e f f e c t i v e and can have s i g n i f i c a n t short-term and long-term e f fec t s with a v a r i e t y of r e c i p i e n t s , there i s a need for more research. Perhaps the more obvious need i s for a r e p l i c a t i o n of t h i s study on a l a r g e r sca le . I t would a lso be i n t e r e s t i n g to gather a d d i t i o n a l information about re luc tant p a r t i c i p a n t s . I t would be important to know, i n more depth, why these i n d i v i d u a l s do not p a r t i c i p a t e and how t h e i r needs might be bet ter met. PSDN seems to be having an important and s i g n i f i c a n t impact on s o c i a l ass istance r e c i p i e n t s , as perceived by the c l i e n t s themselves. Although the r e s u l t s of t h i s study are encouraging and suggest that sof t workfare programs can be f a i r and e f f ec t i ve (although there needs to be much more research) , programs l i k e PSDN are not enough i n i s o l a t i o n . The program i s severely l i m i t e d by the resources , services and external factors around i t . The program seemed to have a major and s i g n i f i c a n t 222 impact, from any psycho-soc ia l or economic perspect ive , on i n d i v i d u a l s who had options a v a i l a b l e to them. I f soc ie ty i s to ever s er ious ly address the unemployment and "welfare problem" i t w i l l need to be a long-term and co-ordinated strategy that develops opportuni t ies for a l l unemployed persons. The process, however, i s long-term, c o s t l y and involves education and t r a i n i n g combined with full-employment p o l i c i e s that guarantees meaningful and wel l -paying jobs for those that want them. 223 References Adams, D. (1983). 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Has your s i t u a t i o n changed at a l l over the l a s t three months? 2. Some people th ink that personal problems can get i n the way of people ge t t ing a job . I'm t a l k i n g here about things l i k e shyness, lack of confidence, or other problems l i k e that . To what extent does t h i s apply to you? 2a. As you may remember, i n Dec. we ta lked about 242 some of the personal problems that you sa id may get i n the way of you ge t t ing a job . They were X. Have these problems changed i n the past three months or have you taken any steps to work on them 3. Are there any other kinds of problems that get i n the way of you get t ing a job , now or i n the future? Here I'm t a l k i n g about problems l i k e lack of education, lack of t r a i n i n g , day care and other problems l i k e that . 3a. We a lso ta lked i n Dec. about other kinds of problems that get i n the way of you get t ing work. They were X. Have you worked on any of these problems or taken steps to overcome them since I l a s t ta lked to you? 4. Being unemployed can be a negative experience for many people. Some people need help and support to deal with the problems created by unemployment and look to f r i ends , r e l a t i v e s , support groups and supportive programs for he lp . Where do you get your help from? -what sor t of help have you been ge t t ing -from what sources 4a. Since D e c , have you found any organizat ions , groups or people who have supported or guided you to help 243 with some of the problems we discussed? As you may remember, you sa id i n Dec. that you get help and support from X;. 5. What employment-related programs and serv ices are you aware of i n Edmonton? These can be t r a i n i n g programs, education programs, job-c lubs , supportive agencies, job placement agencies or any agencies that are a v a i l a b l e i n Edmonton to help the unemployed? -what employment-related agencies, s erv ices , or organizat ions have you been involved with i n the l a s t year? 5a. Since I l a s t saw you, have you become aware of any programs or employment re la ted services i n Edmonton that you were not aware of i n Dec. 6. Suppose I were t r y i n g to design a program that might be h e l p f u l to you and others who are unemployed. What might that program look l i k e and what could I do to help the unemployed? 6a. As you may remember, i n Dec. we ta lked about designing a program that might be h e l p f u l to you and others who are unemployed. You sa id that such a program 244 might look l i k e X. Do you s t i l l f e e l the same or would you change anything? INTRO; Now I would l i k e to t a l k to you about the program that you have jus t s tar ted . In these questions I am looking for what you knew about the Personal Support and Development Network and how you f e l t about going? 7. When you were re ferred to P . S . D . N , d i d you look forward to going to the program or not? -cou ld you t e l l me why 7a. In D e c , you seemed glad/not glad about going to P . S . D . N . . Now that you been i n the program for a whi le , are you s t i l l g lad/not glad about your dec i s ion to enter the program? 8. I am t r y i n g to get a f e e l i n g for what you knew about P . S . D . N , before you began the program from reading the brochure, t a l k i n g to other people, or from your s o c i a l worker. From what you knew about P . S . D . N . , what sorts of serv ices and programs d i d you th ink P . S . D . N , would be prov id ing you? 8a. As you may remember, i n Dec. we were t a l k i n g 245 about what you thought you might do i n the program and you sa id X* Did you do the sorts of things i n the program that you thought you would? The fo l lowing questions r e l a t e only to the "after"  p o r t i o n of the study: INTRO: Now I am looking for your opinions and fee l ings about P . S . D . N . . Think about what you d i d while going to P . S . D . N , and how you f e l t about the experience: 9. What d i d you l i k e about P . S . D . N . ? 10. What d i d you not l i k e about P . S . D . N . ? 11. Based on your experiences at P . S . D . N . , what would you say are the strengths of the program? 12. Based on your experiences at P . S . D . N . , what would you say are the weaknesses of the program? 13 Do you th ink you would recommend t h i s program to others who are unemployed? 246 APPENDIX C Excerpts from Template I n i t i a l Impressions from Study -"Just because we're unemployed, we s t i l l b leed, we s t i l l hurt and we s t i l l fee l" - I was impressed by the d i v e r s i t y , complexity and heterogeneity of needs, problems and expectations of the unemployed on welfare. -People v a r i e d tremendously i n where they were i n respect to transi t ion-some jus t need a break and a few leads , while others need a tremendous amount of help -the downward s p i r a l of unemployment and welfare i s a dehumanizing process that gets worse and worse: -"I t ' s l i k e a web, you t r y to get one strand unrave l led and there ' s twenty more" - i t seems that the longer a person i s unemployed, the more complicated and interwoven the problems become. -The problems seem to have t h e i r roots from the lack of f inances . The lack of finances creates a v i c i o u s c i r c l e that i s very hard to break out of . -unemployment seems to be a very personal experience 248 -over time, people seem to adjust to unemployment and develop l i v e s around unemployment and ass is tance -PSDN i s b a s i c a l l y f u l f i l l i n g the Opportunity Planner r o l e advocated i n T r a n s i t i o n s . -PSDN i s looking at more than jus t jobs and developing j o b - s k i l l s , i t i s looking at the whole range of issues that are confronting the unemployed on welfare. A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services -very few persons, i f anyone, wanted anything to do with A l b e r t a Family and S o c i a l Services -do not want to go into o f f i c e s or t a l k to workers unless they absolute ly have to - c l i e n t s do not understand the system, have been taught that approaching S o c i a l Services causes nothing but t rouble : treated d i s r e s p e c t f u l l y and l i k e "scum" - c l i e n t s on ass istance often lose contro l over t h e i r l i v e s , they f ee l powerless and are often i s o l a t e d and detached: -"S.S t o l d me I had to do i t on my own" -"to S . S . , you're a number and a f i l e " -"no help from S.S ." -"feels l i k e you're i n p r i s o n , S .S. i s always 249 on your back" - " s o c i a l workers are very hard to t a l k to , they c lose you o f f so fa s t . . .they don't know what's going o n . . . t h e y don't l e t you expla in t h i n g s . . . y o u can' t get through to them" - " . . . S . S . get mad at you, they don't give you a chance" - " S . S . o f f i c e s are run down" -"not ge t t ing any information from s o c i a l w o r k e r . . . " -"can' t get to see the s o c i a l w o r k e r . . . I spend two or three hours t r y i n g to get hold of s o c i a l worker" - " S . S . i s do i t or e l se . . .they don't even know me. . ." -"they don't care who I am" -"I don't consider a s o c i a l worker any kind of h e l p . . . y o u can' t get through. , they int imidate you" Well-being; "you have no idea how unemployment has af fected my c o r e . . . i t s made me f ee l l i k e sh i t" -by far the most common response to the question of the e f fec t s of unemployment was a lack of money (see B a l l o c h , 250 B r i t i s h s tudy) . -"very hard to make i t f i n a n c i a l l y . . . I ' m d r i v i n g a car now, I have no insurance . . .we're always borrowing money to get through" -"unemployment takes away your manhood" -"I've l o s t my se l f - re spec t and I f e e l I'm worth nothing, I doubt the fact I can even work. . .what are you, you're fucking nothing" - " t a l k about r e j e c t i o n s . . . n o t working used to get to me, and I used to go o f f and h i t the booze" -"don't f ee l pressure from my family , I f ee l pressure from myself" -"Not only am I a human being, I'm also a s p i r i t u a l being, and s p i r i t u a l l y , i f a person doesn't p u l l h i s weight God may as wel l take him" -many people discussed the way that unemployment a f fec t s r e l a t i o n s h i p s , not only with spouses but with c h i l d r e n : -"the kids can' t go to the mall l i k e other kids" -"the way my kids look at me. They wonder why mommy i s at home and other mommies are out working" -few respondents were s a t i s f i e d with t h e i r present s i tuat ion-most stated that they wanted to make changes 251 i n t h e i r l i v e s : -"I don't l i k e to be on a s s i s t a n c e . . . I don't want my son to grow up on assistance" -Time: many people ta lked about too much time on t h e i r hands: -"too much time on my hands" -"when he's got something to do with h i s time he's more under c o n t r o l . . . s t u c k at home he•s hard to get along with" -"too much time, I can ' t handle i t " - s evera l persons discussed about how unemployment can lead to stagnation and a lack of motivation ( th is can lead to i s o l a t i o n , see K. B r i a r ) : -"You s i t around, you get l azy , and then you end up s leeping i n , you can' t get u p . . . y o u get yourse l f into a ru t and you can' t get out of i t " -"what do you d o - s i t down and watch soap operas-I'm not making any progress i n my l i f e , you f ee l l i k e you're jus t s i t t i n g there . What do you do, watch T . V . " -"You're on your own.. .You*re i n a c i t y of 500,000 and you f ee l l i k e you're a l l by yoursel f" -"I can' t be ac t ive . . .becoming l e t h a r g i c . . . I 252 don't have ambition to do anything but I'm not sure why" -"there's nothing to get up for" - a l o t of people, p a r t i c u l a r l y men, ta lked about ge t t ing down and ge t t ing depressed ("feel l i k e a c h a r i t y case") -"[unemployment has affected m e ] . . . f i n a n c i a l l y and mental ly , mentally the most" -"I don't l i k e s i t t i n g i d l e ; you get bored and i f you get bored you s t a r t ge t t ing depressed." - f r u s t r a t i o n : -"sometimes I get so f rus tra ted I ' l l j u s t go and s i t someplace for h o u r s . . . j u s t t r y to block the whole world out and, I get depressed, I don't know what to do" -welfare can lead to loss of f r i ends : -" fr iends a t t i tudes change. .they phone you up and say "lets go out", you say you can"t a f ford i t , they say "we' l l pay". They make you f ee l l i k e a c h a r i t y c a s e . . . a f t e r a whi le , they stop phoning you" -"has af fected my r e l a t i o n s h i p with f r i e n d s . . . I can' t do what they do" 253 Information/Resources: -There appeared to be a d e f i n i t e lack of information about resources and options for most c l i e n t s , male and female. -the need for information was a consis tent theme: -"no one has ever t o l d me anything about any of the programs a v a i l a b l e . . . I d i d n ' t know where to look" - there seems to be a r e a l i z a t i o n on the part of those interviewed that t r a i n i n g i s important but there i s a lack of a b i l i t y to f igure out how to access, -some people know how to get information (e .g . school) but then do not know what i t means or what to do next, -o f ten , respondents were unaware of things that many people take for granted: -"I was looking at going back to school but I d i d n ' t r e a l l y know how to go about i t " - " I d i d n ' t know how to get student l o a n s . . . d i d n ' t have a clue" PSDN: Eva luat ion . Observations and Impressions - " B u i l d i n g the program to the person rather than b u i l d i n g the person to the program" (PSDN 254 Counsellor) - a l o t of people i n i t i a l l y d i d not want to go to the program because they thought i t was going to be some classroom th ing where they would l earn how to do a resume and "pol ish t h e i r shoes"-many went to the program because they f e l t they had to or "they had nothing to lose" or " i t was worth a shot" -"Once I got there I was r e l i e v e d . . . I thought people were going to wring my ass out for not working" -"I don't need someone to t e l l me to shave before I go to an interview" -most people stated that they were happy with the program: -"I found the program very s a t i s f a c t o r y . They s tar ted working with me where I needed to be working not where they f e l t I should s tart" - " . . . d o i n g what the c l i e n t wants to do" -"I was impressed by the program" -"a good program. . . I ' ve recommended i t to two of my nieces" -understanding: - "people at PSDN understood" 255 -"[the counsel lor] ta lked to me, made me f ee l welcome, made me fee l l i k e I was a somebody, that was great , I kept coming back" -no pressure: -"I've had enough pressure i n my l i f e j u s t dea l ing with what I got" -"they suggest, they don't t e l l you" -"can' t force somebody" Support: -"support i s impor tant . . . you haven't found a job yet but that doesn't mean you're not going to" -"they're jus t there" -"someone I can t a l k to" -"someone who d i d n ' t judge me" - " P . S . D . N , i s support ive , you can have a good chat about anything you want to t a l k about - " . . . I don't l i k e pressure, I don't l i k e people hass l ing me. I need to f ee l comfortable" -"moral support was important, I wasn't looking for i t . . . j u s t knowing[being unemployed] wasn't p a r t i c u l a r to me" -"they support you" - d i r e c t i o n , information and guidance: some people have 256 no idea of options for t h e i r l i v e s and others are able to access information but then have a d i f f i c u l t time analyzing the information: -"I needed something, I needed to know what was going on out there" -"no f o o l i n g a r o u n d . . . good meat . . .got good information, s t u f f I could use" -"they have a wide range of mater ia l to draw from. . . they give you options" -"has given me names of people to c o n t a c t . . . t h a t ' s been a great help" -Thing I l i k e about i t i s the counsel l ing. . .mom i s O.K. for morale support but I need to t a l k to someone who knows" -"they're up on everything you can do to bet ter y o u r s e l f . . . l o t s of ideas, that what I needed" -pleasant atmosphere and ambience: -"I don't mind coming here, i n fact when I get down I l i k e coming here" -"makes you f ee l c o m f o r t a b l e . . . l i k e a fr iend" -"when I walked i n , there was a whole d i f f e r e n t atmosphere to walking i n to the S o c i a l Service o f f i c e . In there you can fee l the tens ion . They 257 r e a l l y don't want to t a l k to you. But coming here, from the r e c e p t i o n i s t r i g h t up they make you f ee l l i k e your welcome" -"worker was very pleasant , easy to t a l k to" 258 APPENDIX D Excerpts from Representative Interviews Excerpt Number One: -corresponds to No. 4 respondent i n Interview Abstracts Appendix. -December Interview, male, 29 years o l d , s i n g l e , grade 12 education, l e g a l l y b l i n d . Interviewer: Some people suggest that unemployment can have major e f fec ts on peoples l i v e s . I was wondering how you th ink unemployment has affected your l i f e ? Respondent: Wel l , I ' d say being broke a l l the time. No money. Welfare gives me $409 r i g h t now. I pay $400 for room and board here, so I have $9 to survive the res t of the month. Nine bucks! Being unemployed I don't own anything anymore. . . A n a l y s i s : The phrase "broke a l l the time" was i d e n t i f i e d as an i n d i c a t o r for "lack of finances" under the general t o p i c heading of "effects of unemployment and s o c i a l ass i s tance ." 259 Interviewer: Okay. How do you th ink unemployment has af fected you emotionally? Did i t change you at a l l emotionally? Respondent: Oh yeah. I ' d say I'm s l i g h t l y b i t t e r ; I have a b i t t e r a t t i tude towards being unemployed. Yeah, I ' d say I'm a l i t t l e b i t t e r [negative e f f ec t of unemployment] about i t—nobody's ever t o l d me about any of these programs [lack of information] , and none of t h i s s t u f f . I d i d n ' t know where to look. I can ' t read a telephone book [employment b a r r i e r ] . . . Ana lys i s : Three elements noted i n t h i s paragraph. Bi t terness i d e n t i f i e d as i n d i c a t o r for negative response under general category of "effects of unemployment." The phrase "nobody's ever t o l d me about any of these programs" r e f l e c t s a lack of information under the "awareness of services and resources" category. "I can ' t read a telephone book" was catalogued under the category of "problems and b a r r i e r s being faced." Excerpt Number Two: -corresponds to No. 12 respondent i n Interview Abstracts Appendix. -March follow-up interview, male, 25 years o l d , s i n g l e , grade 10 education. Interviewer: Okay. When I saw you i n December we ta lked about things that you thought you might do i n the program and you sa id you weren't r e a l l y sure. Did you do what you expected to do? Respondent: No. Interviewer: I'm sorry , what do you mean? Respondent: I d i d n ' t do anything i n any type of areas. Interviewer: Okay. Has i t been good for you-has i t done anything at a l l ? Respondent: No, i t hasn't done nothing. Interviewer: Is there anything you l i k e d about PSDN? Respondent: No. I t hasn't done anything for me. Interviewer: What d i d n ' t you l i k e about the program? Respondent: I ju s t d i d n ' t l i k e the job counse l lor I got. She's not t r y i n g to f i n d me a job or anything. A n a l y s i s : Under category of PSDN eva luat ion , t h i s was in terpreted as a negative response to the program. Within t h i s category, two weaknesses were i d e n t i f i e d : counsel lors ("I jus t d i d n ' t l i k e the job counse l lor") ; and lack of j ob -p lac ing c a p a b i l i t y ("She's not t r y i n g to f i n d me a job or anything") 261 APPENDIX E I n t e r v i e w A b s t r a c t s No. 1: Sex: female Age: 34 M a r i t a l S t a t u s : S i n g l e , 1 dep. E d u c . : grade 8 December I n t e r v i e w : E f f e c t s o f unemployment: f i n a n c i a l ("have t o b u d g e t " ) , no freedom, e m o t i o n a l l y , t ime ("too much t i m e " ) , d e p r e s s i o n , anger , l a c k o f m o t i v a t i o n ("don't want t o do n o t h i n g - l i v e day t o d a y " ) , i s o l a t i o n ("don't ge t out o f house") . Employment b a r r i e r s o r prob lems: mother d i e d , 3 b r o t h e r s d i e d , l a c k o f e d u c a t i o n , d e p r e s s i o n , s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e . S u p p o r t : from f r i e n d s . Employment programs p e r s o n would l i k e t o see: would l i k e t r a i n i n g . Awareness o f e m p l o y m e n t - r e l a t e d s e r v i c e s : none, new t o town. P e r c e p t i o n o f S o c i a l S e r v i c e s : d i f f i c u l t t o d e a l w i t h . Knowledge o f P S D N / r e f e r r a l s o u r c e : knew n o t h i n g . PSDN: good program, has recommended i t t o o t h e r s , h e l p f u l , l i k e d c o u n s e l l o r s , s u p p o r t i v e , l i s t e n e d , p e o p l e a r e n i c e , f e l t c o m f o r t a b l e , c o u l d t a l k t o anyone t h e r e ("not snobby") , r e l a x e d ( " t a l k i n g t o worker was e a s y -I ' v e had a l o t o f p r o b l e m s " ) , "she knew what I was g o i n g t h r o u g h " , seemed t o u n d e r s t a n d , i n f o r m a t i o n ("made me aware o f a program a t G r a n t MacKewan C o l l e g e . . . t h i n k i t w i l l h e l p " ) . 262 March Interview: Respondent chose not to p a r t i c i p a t e i n the March interview. The researcher d id contact her by phone but was unable to l earn anything about her s i t u a t i o n i n March. 2 6 3 No. 2: Sex: female Age: 35 M a r i t a l Status: S ing le , no dep. E d u c : grade 11 March Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: f i n a n c i a l ("can't buy things you l i k e " ) , sad, hopeless, depression, embarrassment, powerlessness ("can't do anything about i t " ) . Employment b a r r i e r s or problems: not addressed Support: r e l a t i v e s . Employment program person would l i k e to see: would l i k e to see t r a i n i n g ,supported education. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : none, j u s t moved. Perception of S o c i a l Services: very negative, can not get through, "don't give you a chance", "don't know whats going on", don't l e t you expla in th ings , on your back, "you fee l l i k e your i n pr i son", can ' t t a l k to them, c lose you o f f so f a s t . Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: t o l d to go to program. PSDN: general ly negative, l i k e S o c i a l Serv ices , f e l t she i s being bothered. March Interview: Had s tar ted the Grant McKewan Career Development program and was very exci ted about going. She stated that the program i s "something to hold on to , something going for m e . . . i f i t doesn't work out [ into a job] you s t i l l l earn something. . . I won't f ee l so down, I ' l l p i ck up what I can and go from there ." The respondent was much more p o s i t i v e about PSDN i n the second interview, s t a t i n g that "in December, I d i d n ' t know anything [about PSDN] and I was kind of negative and questioning i t . . .I 'm glad I went 264 now." She l i k e d the fact that the program was h e l p f u l , gets you doing something, got her into something she could look forward to , was happy about her worker ("she t r i e d to do what I wanted to do"). She would recommend the program: "good for people, e s p e c i a l l y those who can' t f i n d any kind of work and have nothing going for them". The strength of the program i s that i t "makes people f ee l be t ter about themselves". 265 No. 3: Sex: male Age: 3 6 M a r i t a l Status: Marr ied , 3 dep. Educ . : grade 11 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: f i n a n c i a l , "can't do what you want", emotional ly , r e j e c t i o n ("nobody wants you"), want to q u i t , i s o l a t i o n ("friends disappear, alone i n a c i t y . . . " ) , depression ("can r e l a t e to su i c ide") , s e l f -esteem ("like I'm not a man anymore"), external pressure but more i n t e r n a l pressure ("what kind of man doesn't want to support h i s fami ly") . Employment b a r r i e r s or problems: age, lack of education, i n j u r e d . Support: from fami ly . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: not addressed. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : very l i t t l e , was not aware of student loans u n t i l very recent ly . Perception of S o c i a l Services: l i t t l e help ("told me I have to do i t on my own"), lack of cont inu i ty ("workers change so much") , lack of rapport ("you can f ee l the t e n s i o n . . . d o n ' t want to t a l k to you"). Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: d id not know about program before he went, he thought "here we go again ." PSDN: p o s i t i v e , motivation ("gives me something to look forward to") , options and information, encouragement, support, respect , good atmosphere, t r u s t , people he can t a l k t o . March Interview: The researcher was unable to connect with t h i s respondent for a second interview. In a short telephone conversation the respondent stated he was now working. 266 No. 4: Sex: male Age: 29 M a r i t a l s tatus: s ing le Educ . : grade 12 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: f i n a n c i a l (broke a l l the time, debt) , b i t terness /anger , depressed at t imes, boredom ("s i t t ing i d l e " ) , too much time. Employment b a r r i e r s or problems: b l i n d , shy, t ranspor ta t ion . Support: r e l a t i v e s and f r i ends . Employment program person would l i k e to see: more serv ices l i k e t ranspor ta t ion , more job opportuni t i e s , t r a i n i n g , more information. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : not aware of anything, unaware of services for b l i n d people. Perception of S o c i a l Services: negative, lack of information, u n r e a l i s t i c (unreasonable demands), negative. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: knew nothing, f e l t he had to go i m p l i c i t l y . PSDN: l i k e s program, good approach ("nice lady") , information ("two leads"), respect ("treated me wel l") , h e l p f u l , support ive , lack of pressure ("said don't get i n no panic") , relaxed (comfortable), good even i f you can not f i n d a job . March Interview: Respondent has made several changes i n h i s s i t u a t i o n . He has gotten involved i n v a r i e t y of a c t i v i t i e s and programs for the b l i n d i n Edmonton. He was very upbeat and p o s i t i v e i n the second interview s t a t i n g "I f ee l a l o t be t ter than I d i d three months ago, most d e f i n i t e l y . " 267 "I guess i t s j u s t a whole new look on l i f e for me because I'm sort of s t a r t i n g my whole l i f e over." PSDN gave t h i s respondent several r e f e r r a l s that were app l i cab le and have made a r e a l d i f ference for t h i s client-"[PSDN] was the centre , the whole nucleus for expanding, everything went outwards from PSDN and the [ counse l lor ] ." He p a r t i c u l a r l y l i k e d the "information, they gave me information every time I came up. I f something came up they were w i l l i n g to he lp ." He was very s a t i s f i e d with the program s t a t i n g the " i t ' s d e f i n i t e l y a good program. I th ink everyone should take i t . . . i f they 're looking for some kind of career he lp , to put out some f e e l e r s , to f i n d out what they might want to do and f i n d out where there ' s opportuni t i e s , what l i e s out there for everybody, they should see PSDN". Strengths: "don't turn t h e i r back on you, always w i l l i n g to he lp , counse l lor i s ju s t a super l a d y . . . ready to help anybody", the information "she was w i l l i n g to put f ee l ers out, to f i n d out what i t ' s a l l about and s t u f f l i k e that -would "most d e f i n i t e l y recommend"-"If I wouldn't have went to PSDN I ' d s t i l l be s i t t i n g exact ly where I was i n October, doing nothing, doing absolute ly nothing. That ' s the whole nucleus, tha t ' s where i t s t a r t e d . " 268 No. 5: Sex: female Age: 22 M a r i t a l s tatus: s i n g l e , 1 dep. Educ . : grade 10 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: not af fected by unemployment, no pressure, i s going back to school (had p l a n ) . Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: shy, lack of confidence. Support: fami ly . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: support i s important. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : l i t t l e , not app l i cab le i n t h i s s i t u a t i o n . Perception of S o c i a l Services: not addressed. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: had to go, knew nothing about the program, was not sure about going. PSDN: support i s important, PSDN was h e l p f u l but not a l o t ( c l i e n t already knew she was going to be going to school when she s tarted PSDN). March Interview: Respondent only saw PSDN twice. In December she had come into the program with the idea of going to school . She i s now attending school and enjoying i t . She stated that PSDN had l i t t l e impact on her other than g i v i n g her some information on daycare that she had not been aware of . She would, however, recommend the program, s t a t i n g that the program was " fr i endly and understanding" and "someone there for you i f you needed i t . " 269 No. 6: Sex male Age: 47 M a r i t a l s tatus: separated Education: grade 12, co l lege diploma December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: lack of contro l over l i f e , f i n a n c i a l (debts, forced to l i v e o f f r e l a t i v e s ) , s e l f -esteem ("hard to take"), dependency, r e j e c t i o n . Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: employment/marriage b r e a k u p / a l c o h o l - a l l part of package, d i f f i c u l t to d i f f e r e n t i a t e . Support: from fami ly . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: not addressed. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : was a p r o f e s s i o n a l , i s aware of appl i cab le s erv i ces . Perception of S o c i a l Services: never met worker, o f f i c e s run down, do not stay involved, "just want you o f f assistance". Awareness of PSDN/referral source: no idea what i t was, thought i t would be job-readiness program but "nothing to lose ." PSDN: p o s i t i v e , s t i l l involved i n he lping to look for bet ter job , profess iona l ("no foo l ing around, good meat"), l i k e d o f f i c e s , profess iona l (gave him what he needed), support i s important ("wasn't looking for i t " ) , motivation ("a b i t of a boost"), understanding ("just knowing i t wasn't p a r t i c u l a r to me"), counse l lor was conf ident . March Interview: Respondent had moved into a halfway house for recovering a l c o h o l i c s . He was s t i l l looking for a job and was discouraged about being unable to f i n d one. He had 270 recent ly qu i t a night time job d e l i v e r i n g p i z z a . He was s t i l l p o s i t i v e about PSDN and would recommend the program. He f e l t p o s i t i v e about the worker and got a "boost" from the worker. He d i d comment, however, that the worker had l ed him to be l ieve that he would get an interview ("[the counsel lor] had promised me an interview, that was a letdown"). PSDN had a lso l e t him know about two programs i n the c i t y that he was not aware of and had been p o s i t i v e experiences for him. 271 No. 7: Sex:female Age: 3 6 M a r i t a l s tatus: d ivorced , 2 dep. Educ . : grade 11, co l lege diploma December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: f i r s t two months i s hardest , emotional ly , unemployed by choice so eas ier to take, f i n a n c i a l l y i s tough, time ("hard to get used to time"), a per iod of doubting her a b i l i t i e s , f e l t s o c i e t a l expectations to work, lack of contro l over l i f e , pr ide hur t , increas ing i s o l a t i o n ("less and l ess contact with o ld network"), l i m i t s s o c i a l l i f e . Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: lack of education. Support: f r i e n d s . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: would l i k e to see support, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n f i r s t two months. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : more than most, she worked i n S o c i a l Services f i e l d , but s t i l l not f a m i l i a r with some of the employment-related programs. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: re f erred by worker, angry at f i r s t , i m p l i c i t f e e l i n g she had to go, had never heard of program. PSDN: p o s i t i v e , got information, support, re laxed atmosphere ("laughter"), r e s p e c t / i n d i v i d u a l approach ("started working where I needed to be working"), more than j u s t employment issues discussed and she l i k e d t h i s . March Interview: Respondent had appl ied for school i n September and was going to take c lasses over the summer. She had come into the program interes ted i n school and was p o s i t i v e about the help she had received from PSDN. She commented that "the counse l lor has been r e a l l y good, a couple of times a month she phones . . . she ' s been good for my self-esteem." She l i k e d the information a v a i l a b l e and the counse l lor 272 the most, "[the counsel lor] was up on education, where to go, co l l eges , degrees, so she shared a l o t of that information. . .she was exce l lent i n that she saw something i n me as a person and proceeded to help b u i l d s e l f -esteem and p o s i t i v e words shared." She was very exc i ted about going to school s ta t ing that "I get r e a l l y exc i ted , I f e e l a tremendous amount of hope." She would recommend the PSDN program. 273 No. 8: Sex: male Age: 27 M a r i t a l s tatus: s ing le Educ . : grade 9 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: hurts , self-esteem, f i n a n c i a l l y , had e f fec t s on fr iends ("no money to do anything"), too much time. Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: education, no high paying jobs . Support: h imsel f . Employment b a r r i e r s and programs: t r a i n i n g and education. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : aware of a few, but not involved i n any. Perception of S o c i a l Services: "don't l i k e to go to o f f i ces" , never seen worker. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: d i d not know anything about program, "give i t a t r y " . PSDN: contacts , got some information about school , c l i e n t knew what he wanted (just some help with school ) , l i k e d what PSDN d i d but d i d not r e a l l y need a l o t . March Interview: Respondent d i d not wish to have a second interview s t a t i n g that "he had sa id everything i n December." The respondent d i d say he was working but the researcher was unable to get any information beyond that . 274 No. 9: Sex: male Age: 54 M a r i t a l Status: married Educ . : grade 12, 1 year u n i v e r s i t y December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: stagnation ("lethargy"), f i n a n c i a l ("car broke down"), depression, i n t e r n a l pressure ("pressure from myself") , i s o l a t i o n ("fear of man"), too much time. Employment problems and b a r r i e r s : age, lack of resources . Support: mainly w i th in . Employment program person would l i k e to see: t r a i n i n g program, p a r t i c u l a r l y for o lder workers; grants . Awareness of employment-related serv ices : nothing. Perception of S o c i a l Services: negative, hard to get hold of, never ta lked to him about employment i ssues , too busy. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: d i d not know anything about PSDN, looking forward to i t . PSDN: no contact yet . March Interview: Since December respondent has s tarted a small business out of h i s home. He stated that he i s "regaining s e l f -confidence," p r i m a r i l y from the business . He stated that "once you get back into i t , your se l f -conf idence returns as you keep working on i t . " He was very s a t i s f i e d with the r o l e PSDN played for him s ta t ing that the program helped "guide and support": "the counse l lor i s very p o s i t i v e , even i f she knew i t was doomed to f a i l u r e she would s t i l l encourage you to t r y i t ju s t for the sake of doing i t , I th ink i t s f a n t a s t i c , there should be more people l i k e her ." The things he l i k e d about the program was i t s "large resource p o r t f o l i o " ("you can become aware 275 of resources you wouldn't otherwise"), the p o s i t i v e approach of the counse l lor ("she encourages you to do, she doesn't encourage you to f a i l , I th ink i t s f a n t a s t i c " ) , the encouragement ("In December, I was at a low po in t , I had given up d o i n g . . . I do be l i eve the encouragement was what was needed"), b e l i e f i n him, put t ing ac t ion in to words. He would recommend the program for others . 276 No. 10: Sex: Male Age: 2 3 M a r i t a l s tatus: s ing le Educ . : grade 10 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: f i n a n c i a l l y ("can't buy th ings") , "you get lazy" ( rut ) , pressure from parents . Employment b a r r i e r s or problems: lack of t r a i n i n g , c r i m i n a l record , lack of confidence. Support: not addressed. Employment program person would l i k e to see: people need support. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : aware of a few th ings , i n t h i s case c l i e n t d id not know how to process the information, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n regard to school opt ions . Perception of S o c i a l Services: can be c o l d , do not care too much. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: d i d not f ee l he had to go, wanted to go, d i d not know what he would be doing, "Anything i s bet ter than nothing." PSDN: f e l t l i k e somebody, made him fee l welcome, he lp ing him get funding, wants to use t h e i r resources, "they're up on everything", ideas, d i d not know how to go about going back to school , l i k e d o f f i c e , wants to do footwork on h i s own. March Interview: Respondent had s tarted Pre-tech course i n January and was enjoying i t ("I'm not s i t t i n g around doing nothing") and has been good for h i s confidence. He would recommend PSDN and i s g lad he went ("even i f i t doesn't help them get where they want to go i t s somebody to s i t there and l i s t e n to them and they can hear themselves") . He stated 277 that i t was "good to go there, at l eas t I'm s i t t i n g down and t a l k i n g to someone and formulating what I want to do", "just someone to l i s t e n to me was wel l worth i t . " He l i k e d the fact that "they were w i l l i n g to help", the "atmosphere": " i t wasn't l i k e "we're get t ing paid for t h i s so we don't give a s h i t whether you get anything or not", i t was " l ike O.K. w e ' l l check t h i s out and take i t from there" He a lso l i k e d the information he got from PSDN ("mainly the t a l k i n g and the information"). He had not been aware of the Career Information Hot l ine or school bursar ies p r i o r to the program. The strength of the program was that i t was "help that was there , they had t h e i r hand out, you could accept i t or you cou ldn ' t" ) . 278 No. 11: Sex: female Age: 28 M a r i t a l Status: common-law, 1 dep. Educ . : grade 12 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: f i n a n c i a l (shortage of income, c o l l e c t i o n agencies) , r e l a t i o n s h i p s ("on edge with kids") , s t r e s s f u l , too much time ("nothing to look forward to") , s tagnation, family comes f i r s t . Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: lack of confidence. Support: boyfr iend . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: show people how to get jobs . Awareness of employment-related program: a l i t t l e , aware of temporary agencies. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: knew nothing about PSDN, f e l t she had to go. PSDN: no contact , hopes for support and some information. March Interview: Since December, respondent had found a part - t ime job working approximately 15 hours per week. She had found the job on her own and d id not f ee l PSDN had played a r o l e for her . The PSDN counsel lor had re ferred her to a program i n Edmonton for the d isabled but the respondent d i d not th ink i t was appropriate and d i d not attend. The counse l lor had also l e t her know about the ESP program that she had not been aware of . She would not recommend the program s ta t ing that she d id not "feel as though she got too much out of i t " and "didn't do anything with PSDN." She sa id that "wasn't sure what the whole th ing was about", and was "not sure exact ly what they are supposed to d o . . . supposed to f ind a person a job or something." 279 No. 12: Sex: male Age: 25 M a r i t a l s tatus: s ing le Educ . : grade 10 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: no e f fec ts from unemployment, on for 5 years (adapted), does not want to f i n d a job , could i f he wanted to . Employment b a r r i e r s or problems: none. Support: important for some people, not for him. Employment programs person would l i k e to see: t r a i n i n g . Perception of S o c i a l Services: not addressed. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: d id not want to go, going only because he has to . PSDN: negative, not useful for him, was not h i s free choice , forced to go, "going through the motions— w i l l be no he lp ." March Interview: No changes i n respondent's s i t u a t i o n . Has seen PSDN counse l lor three times who "hasn't done nothing." He states he "didn't l i k e anything about [PSDN]" or the counse l lor "she's not t r y i n g to f ind me work or anything." Respondent does not recommend the program. 280 No. 13: Sex: female age: 22 M a r i t a l s tatus: s ing l e , 1 dep. Educ . : grade 9 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: prefers to work, does not want her c h i l d to grow up on ass is tance , f i n a n c i a l hard on k i d s , being on s o c i a l ass istance bothered her at f i r s t -then adapted, gets her down once i n a whi le , f r u s t r a t i n g . Employment b a r r i e r s or problems: dad d ied , s p l i t up with boyfr iend , moved, s ing le parent, shy. Support: f r i e n d s . Employment program person would l i k e to see: t r a i n i n g . Awareness of employment-related serv ices : one program. Perception of S o c i a l Services: no he lp . Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: nothing about program known. PSDN: no contact . March Interview: There was a follow-up interview arranged but respondent had never seen a PSDN counse l lor . 281 No. 14: Sex: male Age: 31 M a r i t a l s tatus: common-law, 1 dep. Educ . : grade 11 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: complacency, s tagnat ion, been on for a while (adapted) , at f i r s t got him down, no change i n r e l a t i o n s h i p s . Employment b a r r i e r s or problems: none r e a l l y , perceives h i s unemployment more re la ted to market factors than any personal d e f i c i e n c i e s . Support: no one (not an i s sue ) . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: something to motivate c l i e n t s . Awareness of employment-related serv ices : l i t t l e , done nothing i n l a s t year. Perception of S o c i a l Services: never t o l d him about any programs, never helped or spoke to him, ("they take your job-searches and s p i t out your cheque"). Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: knew nothing, "nothing to lose ." PSDN: h e l p f u l ("helping hand"), information, contacts , motivat ion ("a b i t of a push") , contact ("at l eas t he could see her") , treated ok, would recommend i t . March Interview: Respondent i s enro l l ed i n a plumbing program at Northern A l b e r t a I n s t i t u t e of Technology. He viewed PSDN as important i n h i s dec i s ion to go for t r a i n i n g : "[PSDN] got the b a l l r o l l i n g . I t ' s good help because you're not t a l k i n g to people i n S o c i a l Services . I t s an outside look." He a lso pointed out that i t was " ta lk ing to someone who cares ." He fee ls the strength of the program i s i t s mot ivat ional fac tor : "[the counsel lor] asked me 282 where my in teres t s were, how things were going and i f I was happy about l i f e and here are some a l t e r n a t i v e s . Try t h i s and t r y that , I t r i e d a couple of things and i t worked." He recommended PSDN and pointed out that a person "can't go PSDN and say yeah I ' l l look into and then not do i t . " In terms of weaknesses of PSDN he pointed to the name ("sounds l i k e some sort of support group") and that S o c i a l Service workers should have brochures so people have an idea what they are going t o . 283 No. 15: Sex: female Age: 2 2 M a r i t a l Status: s i n g l e , no dep. Educ: grade 6 December Interview Ef fec t s of unemployment: f i n a n c i a l , wants to do something with her l i f e , has not affected her s e l f esteem or confidence. Employment b a r r i e r s or problems: i l l i t e r a c y (created a fear and i s o l a t i o n ) . Support: fr iends and family . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: t r a i n i n g . Awareness of employment-related serv ices : very l i t t l e , needs help processing information. Perception of S o c i a l Services: not addressed. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: d i d not know about program, f e l t she had to go. PSDN: h e l p f u l , supportive, guidance, mot ivat ing, gives her hope, someone behind her s t i c k i n g up for her, l i k e d counse l lors approach ("like a f r i e n d " ) , l i k e d personal attent ion-has a problem i n classroom (same problem she had i n school ) . March Interview: Respondent has enro l l ed i n A lber ta Vocat ional School for upgrading. She c r e d i t s PSDN with an important part i n the process of her going back to school ("she [the counsel lor] sa id nobody i s going to stop you"). She i s g lad she went to the program although she doesn't see the counse l lor much now. She states that "r ight now everything i s f l y i n g , but [the counsel lor] i s there i f something goes wrong, I could t a l k to her ." She a lso appreciates the follow-up:"she phones up once i n a whi le , i t ' s n ice to know someone out there i s making sure 284 everything i s O . K . " The respondent l i k e d the fact that PSDN helped her f ind another place to go to school: "I had heard that I couldn' t go to A V C . . . [ t h e counsel lor] t o l d me to check i t out." She would recommend that program and c i t e d the strength as:"they're there when I need help , i t helps when you've got someone there for you instead of slamming the door i n your face ." 285 No. 16: Sex: female Age: 3 0 M a r i t a l s tatus: separated, 2 dep. Educ. grade 9 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: does not l i k e i t but does not f e e l pressure- fee l s ok r a i s i n g her c h i l d (an important job for h e r ) , doesn't l i k e stigma of SS (embarrassing), important for her to f i n d job-more for her k i d s , unemployment has not affected her self- image ( feels ok about h e r s e l f ) , get i s o l a t e d , finances i s main problem. employment b a r r i e r s or problems: asthma, no experience, age, experience as waitress only, gr 9, lack of t r a n s p o r t a t i o n . Support: not addressed. Employment program person would l i k e to see: need information. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : knew l i t t l e , what she d i d know about she d i d n ' t have the s k i l l s to process , needs guidance about a l t e r n a t i v e s , wants the guidance but on a non-threatening bas i s . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: not addressed. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: not aware of program, re f erred by dept, looked forward to i t . PSDN: motivated her (got her going) , h e l p f u l , a guide (does not know where she i s going) , ge t t ing information about opt ions , need to know where to s t a r t , not judged by counse l lor , not demanding (wants to do i t herse l f— "its not t h e i r r e s p o n s i b i l i t y to take care of me"), non-threatening ("they suggest, don't t e l l " ) , empowering ("I don't need people t e l l i n g me to do t h i s or that") . 286 March Interview: Respondent i s now i n micro-computer course which has had a p o s i t i v e e f fec t on her ("I fee l bet ter about myself") and i s very exci ted about the program and the future . She found out about the program through PSDN ("If [the counsel lor] d i d n ' t mention i t to me I would never have known"). She i s very glad she went to the program and even though she i s i n the computer program she appreciates the follow-up phone c a l l s from her worker. She l i k e s the in teres t of the program: "The fact they 're in teres ted i n what I'm gonna do, they 're out there to help , obviously they are helping me". She sees PSDN as p lay ing the major r o l e i n her f ind ing out about, and ge t t ing i n t o , t h i s program ("I'd never heard [about the program], then they 're here and here I am going to school" and "[the counsel lor] helped me i n a l o t of ways, i f i t wasn't for her, I wouldn't be i n something l i k e [ th i s t r a i n i n g program]"). She sees her counse l lor as the greatest strength of the program: ("[the programs] strength i s t a l k i n g to s ing le women who have no future and a c t u a l l y ge t t ing them out and doing something, g i v i n g them confidence". She would "de f in i t e ly recommend the program." 287 No. 17: Sex: male Age: 31 M a r i t a l Status: married, 1 dep Educ . : grade 10 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: f i n a n c i a l l y (can not do things other people do, p a r t i c u l a r l y for k i d s ) , anger, f r u s t r a t i o n (punches the f r i d g e ) , f ights with spouse, too much time (low s e l f worth and q u a r r e l l i n g ) , time i s a major problem, pressure from himself and r e l a t i v e s , hurt h i s self-esteem ("been t o l d no so many times"), wants to give up at times. Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: age; lack of education, experience, and s k i l l s . Support: wife . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: something to b u i l d up a person's s e l f confidence. Awareness of employment-related serv ices : a l i t t l e . Perception of S o c i a l Services: no he lp . Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: had to go but glad he i s going so f a r , although too ear ly to t e l l . PSDN: h e l p f u l ("helped me quite a b i t " , l i k e d approach ( f r i e n d l y ) , l i k e d the o f f i c e s . March Interview: Respondent i s d e l i v e r i n g P izza , have been few other changes s ince December. He has seen PSDN counse l lor only a few times. He i s g lad he went to PSDN but r e a l l y have not done much. He thinks PSDN i s "helpful" and "easy to t a l k to". He sums up PSDN as "helpful but not h e l p f u l . " He couldn' t r e a l l y say whether he would recommend the program or not. 288 No. 18: Sex: female Age: 31 M a r i t a l s tatus: d ivorced , 2 dep. E d u c : grade 9, 1 year upgrading December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: s o c i a l l y unacceptable, stigma ("the way my kids look at me") , f i n a n c i a l l y ("always broke"), on for a while and has adapted, no problem with time (keeps a c t i v e ) . Employment b a r r i e r s or problems: none. Support: f r i e n d s . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: good counse l lors . Awareness of employment-related serv ices : l i t t l e , not involved i n anything (only looking to school ) . Perception of S o c i a l Services: negative, worker does not know her, never met worker, "they don't care", bossy ("have to do t h i s and have to do that") . Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: d i d not know about program, resented i t at f i r s t but then g lad . PSDN: l i k e s program, l i k e s worker, need a motivator, support, had a plan (school) but needed support, got some information from worker, l i k e d relaxed atmosphere, f e l t comfortable, ("nice t a l k and we planned"), non-threatening , ("the main th ing i s to have people you f e e l comfortable with because i f you don't you're going to have someone's back up"), i n d i v i d u a l ( l iked the one-on one, someone who knows you), gives options ( information and cho ices ) , "suggest don't t e l l " , wide range of mater ia l s , respect ("treat you as a human"), f l e x i b l e . March Interview: Since December, has s tarted courses at Athabasca u n i v e r s i t y (student loans) . She i s f e e l i n g " r e a l l y good 289 r i g h t now...1 f e e l l i k e I'm doing something." Respondent came in to the program only interes ted i n school and was pleased with the help she received from her counse l lor at PSDN: "counsel lor was personable, j u s t wonderful, i t was easy to discuss a l t erna t ive s with her ." She l i k e d the program, p a r t i c u l a r l y : "they have a l l these ideas and a l l these programs they know about. I don't th ink the average person would know about a l l the programs that are a v a i l a b l e , " "PSDN throws ideas l e f t , r i g h t and centre at you about what i s pos s ib l e , there ' s always a new program coming up." Despite the fact she was c l e a r about going back to school she s t i l l perceives PSDN as p lay ing an important r o l e : "They b a s i c a l l y sorted i t out for me. When I decided I wanted to go back to school they d i d n ' t pressure me about my idea , but they d i d leave i t open i n case I changed my mind, they l e f t the doors open." She would recommend the program and stated i t s biggest strength as "pointing out to people there are a l t e r n a t i v e s to what they 're doing now, there are hundreds of courses and programs. Like t h i s lab- tech course [my counse l lor t o l d me about] most people wouldn't th ink about ge t t ing into i t . " 290 No. 19: Sex: female Age: 3 0 M a r i t a l s tatus: s i n g l e , 1 dep. Educ . : Bachelor of Education December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: not a major dea l , was ge t t ing minimum wage before, not a b i g deal f i n a n c i a l l y , (unemployed for a short per iod and was planned), could get f r u s t r a t i n g . Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: new i n town, daycare. Support: not a problem at t h i s time. Employment programs person would l i k e to see: has to be vo luntary . Awareness of employment-related programs: none, new to town. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: not pressured, g lad , no idea what she would do. PSDN: impressed, given her contacts ( information) , h e l p f u l , important that she wasn't forced, respect ("didn't make you f ee l l i k e an i d i o t or anything"). March Interview: Respondent has found a subst i tute teaching job and fee l s good about that ("I f ee l be t ter , n a t u r a l l y when your working you do f ee l better") . She a t t r i b u t e s the job d i r e c t l y to PSDN ("It was through PSDN, they t o l d me about the place I'm working at now, she was the one who gave me the name of the p r i n c i p a l and t o l d me to go down and put i n a resume. . . I probably would have been too scared to apply before but my counsel lor reassured me"). She a lso found out about "quite a few" programs i n Edmonton that she had not been aware of i n December: the career h o t l i n e and job preparat ion workshops. She l i k e d the PSDN program, "the biggest th ing i s the contacts , to go to one place and get a host of contacts , whereas i f 291 you have to run around to ten d i f f e r e n t places and end up with f i ve contacts you're not l i k e l y to do i t because of the expense and time. "Seeing the counse l lor was nice because everytime I went she gave me another contact ." She a lso l i k e d the approach of her counse l lor saying that she "was f r i e n d l y and h e l p f u l and made you f ee l good, she wasn't someone on a pedestal looking down on y o u . . . s h e was a l so prompt, when you have a two and a h a l f year o ld along you don't want to be s i t t i n g there for long ." She would d e f i n i t e l y recommend the program: "I was r e a l l y impressed with the whole idea of i t , I th ink i t ' s a good idea ." She d i d point out that PSDN should have brochures for some of the programs they r e f e r people to i n town. 292 No. 20: Sex: female Age: 3 0 M a r i t a l Status: s i n g l e , 1 dep. Educ . : grade 10 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: f i n a n c i a l (more for k i d s ) , adapted ok, ( feels f u l f i l l e d r a i s i n g c h i l d , been i n dead end jobs ) , se l f -conf idence , s e l f esteem, i s o l a t e d , (does not get out much), c h i l d s tructures time, gets some pressure from mother to f ind a good job , some pressure from fr iends ("are you going to be on welfare your e n t i r e l i f e " ) . Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: lack of confidence, shy. Support: mother. Employment programs person would l i k e to see: would l i k e to see help for self-esteem, to f ee l good about yourse l f . Perception of S o c i a l Services: "no form of he lp , can ' t get through to them", s t r e s s f u l , don't want to see you. Knowledge of PSDN/ref e r r a l source: f e l t she had to go but that she needed i t , d i d not know about i t , thought i t would be "resume t h i n g . " PSDN: would recommend, ge t t ing information, l e t t i n g her know what i s out there , encouragement ("builds up my morale"), support, l i k e s casual approach, l i k e s counse l lors approach ("someone to t a l k to who knows me") , lack of pressure, ("not f o r c e f u l or anything, doesn't say you have to do t h i s or that") , h e l p f u l , mot ivat ing , good ambience ("gives you c o f f e e . . . a candy d i sh at the table") , makes you f ee l at home, could t a l k about anything you wanted to t a l k about, they take the time. March Interview: There has been few changes for t h i s respondent. She i s s t i l l attending the program and i s g lad: "I do need 293 someone to give me a push, to keep me going otherwise I ' l l ju s t th ink about i t for a year or two." She sees PSDN as a motivator and "l ikes the counse l l ing , someone to t a l k to ." She was, however, disappointed that she hadn't got a job through the program but stated that there "is not much PSDN can do, i t s up to the i n d i v i d u a l i n the long r u n . . . I wanted everything on a s i l v e r p l a t t e r . " She recommends the program for people who are looking to go back to school . 294 No. 21: Sex: female Age:3 5 M a r i t a l s tatus: d ivorced , 2 dep. Educ. grade 9 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: f i n a n c i a l , lack of independence, emotional, lack of confidence, self-esteem, af fected r e l a t i o n s h i p with kids (daughter resents she i s not working). Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: shy, lack of experience. Support: f r i e n d s . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: something that i s p o s i t i v e . Awareness of employment-related programs: none. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: knew nothing, mentioned by s o c i a l worker, sa id "she'd t r y anything once." PSDN: not i n yet . March Interview: A l o t has changed for t h i s respondent. The biggest i s that she has faced and i s deal ing with sexual abuse she encountered i n her chi ldhood. Her f i l e has been c losed at PSDN, dea l ing with the sexual abuse i s a l l she can handle at t h i s t ime. She states that the confidence she needed to begin to deal with the sexual abuse would not have happened without the counse l lor at PSDN: "I wouldn't have done i t without t a l k i n g to the PSDN counse l lor . I d i d n ' t have the confidence to p ick up the phone and get he lp ." She i s very p o s i t i v e about the program and had found out about several programs i n the c i t y that she had not been aware of: "PSDN opened my eyes that there was more out there than I thought." She recommends the program and l i s t s a strength as "they had suggestions but d i d n ' t push." 295 No. 22: Sex: male Age: 47 M a r i t a l s tatus: married Educ . : grade 12 December Interview: Ef f ec t s of unemployment: finances ("can't get what you want"), s o c i a l l y i s o l a t e d , leads to f i g h t i n g , s e l f esteem ("I f e e l bad"), morale, se l f -conf idence , a f fected r e l a t i o n s h i p s with family ("always borrowing"), s e l f -esteem, depression, f r u s t r a t i o n , anger, wants to give up at t imes. Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: hea l th , age, spouse i l l , no s k i l l s , no t r a i n i n g , no education. Support: himself . Employment programs person would l i k e to see: t r a i n i n g , keep kids i n school . Awareness of employment-related serv ice : l i t t l e . Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: t r y anything that w i l l get him out of house, had not heard of i t , no idea what he would do. PSDN: understanding ("she seemed to understand"), h e l p f u l , wants connection and leads ("I can f i n d my own job") . March Interview: Since December had been charged with fraud of s o c i a l s erv i ce s . There has been no other changes, "just t r y i n g to get t h i s mess straightened out". Respondent i s s t i l l g lad he i s attending PSDN, "I be l ieve she's he lp ing out." He states that he " l ikes the idea that there i s someone out there w i l l i n g to t r y to he lp ." Even though h i s p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the program has not t rans la t ed in to a job or other a c t u a l i t y , he i s g lad he i s going and he would s t i l l recommend the program: "If you don't have hope, you don't have noth in '" 296 No. 23: Sex: male Age: 4 0 M a r i t a l s tatus: common-law Educ . : grade 8 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: negative, l o s t s e l f respect ("worth nothing"), se l f -doubt ("what are you? you're fucking nothing"), time ("there's nothing to get up f o r " ) , i s o l a t i o n . Employment b a r r i e r s and problems: out of work 10 years , a l c o h o l , f ractured s k u l l , no t r a i n i n g , no s k i l l s . Perception of S o c i a l Services: not addressed. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: forced to go. PSDN: does not l i k e , ("these people are supposed to give me a j ob." March Interview: Researcher was unable to contact t h i s respondent d i r e c t l y . His g i r l f r i e n d thought he was working up north but was not sure. He had l e f t the c i t y . 297 No. 24: Sex: male Age: 41 M a r i t a l s tatus: married, 1 dep. Educ . : grade 12 December Interview: E f f e c t s of unemployment: not r e a l l y ( t ry ing to s t a r t h i s own l i t t l e bus iness) . Employment b a r r i e r s or problems; hea l th . Support: not appl i cab le Employment programs person would l i k e to see: not addressed. Knowledge of PSDN/referral source: s o c i a l worker, d i d not know what he would be doing. PSDN: would c e r t a i n l y recommend, f l e x i b l e ("it works for me"), h e l p f u l ("there to help") , information ("a l o t of information") , counsel lors approach ("I l i k e d the approach/ profess iona l and l i k e a f r i end") , support ive , p o s i t i v e ("gives the person a good f e e l i n g about themselves"), "doesn't put me down." March Interview Respondent i s handicapped but f e l t he made a l o t of progress i n a number of areas s ince December. He had s tar ted some courses and was doing income taxes for people. He was very p o s i t i v e about PSDN and l i k e d the r e l a t i o n s h i p he had with h i s counse l lor and the help: "certa in things I hadn't even thought o f . . . I don't know i f I would have been quite as far i n my dec i s ion making process i f i t wasn't for the counse l lor ." He f e l t the strengths were the approach, the r e l a t i o n s h i p with h i s counse l lor , and the resources: "the strength l i e s i n the resources for d i f f e r e n t i n d i v i d u a l s whatever they are looking for or even i f a person comes i n not knowing what to expect, not having any goals , there i s always something there to be of he lp ." He would recommend the program to anybody and sees i t as a "good out l e t for people and a way to get them going." 298 

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