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Information centres : an essay in power Gilbert, David Edmund 1972

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INFORMATION CENTRES: AM ESSAY IK POWER by David Edmund Gilbert A Social Policy Essay in Partial Fulfilment of the Requirements for the Begx-ee of Master of Social Work (Social Policy Concentration) "University of British Columbia School of Social Work 1972 SOCIAL WORK LIBRARY In presenting this essay in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advance degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the library shall make it freely available for' reference and study. Permission for extensive copyine' for scholarly purposes may be granted by the Director of the School. It is understood that copying or publication for financial gain shall not be allowed without my permission. e School of Social Work, University of British Columbia, Vancouver B.C. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS The following persons './ere kind enough to reply to correspondence connected with this essay. In Britain; John 'Sard, Training Officer, Rational Council of Social Services; Sheila Bellamy, Administrative Assistant, National Citizens Advice Bureaux; John Rea Price, Community Development Project, Home Office; P. G. Smith, Department of Health and Social Security; in the United States; Margaret Purvine, formerly School of Social Work Rutgers University; Kvelyn Fraser, United Community Services of Detroit; Nicholas Long, Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies, Minnesota; in Canada; Mrs. Rees-Potter, Librarian, and Jim Robb of the Canadian Council on Social Development; Charles Kent, Director, London Public Library, Ontario; Kay Cliroie, Chief Librarian, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario; Diana Ironside, Ontario Institute for Studies In Education; Gail Stewart and Cathy Starrs, the Public Policy Concern; Marcia Clunie, Consumers Association of Cans-da; Leslie Peterson, Attorney General, British Columbia. And to the following for permitting me to interview_them and share ray sometimes inane questions with them: 1-irs. Hilda Symonds; Ray Chatelin, George Whitein, Elaine Keen, Paul Mitchell, Judy Aldritt, Lynn Sigurgeirson, Thelma Lindsay, Dorothy Thomas, Sue Trutch, Heidi GIffin, Mrs. Sigurgeirson, Bryce Babcock and Qarlene Mazarf, my slncerest thanks. OOETSNTS Outline Man and Society : an organic viewpoint ; a mechanistic viewpoint A Social Policy dilemma; two viewpoints Two styles of' Information services and a model 15 for Knowledge Dissemination Citizensr Advice Bureaux, Family Advice Centres and 20 the Community Development Project in Britain Neighbourhood Information Centres in the U.S.A. 35 Canadian Community Information Centres - Vancouver 40 Some Concluding Observations 58 Footnotes 62 Bibliography 70 Outline The dual concepts of 'power' and 'equality' are central to discussions of social policy In the Western World. The distribution of knowledge for the common good, with its attendant uses, is one of the controlling factors in both the conceptualisation and operation of 'power1. This essay begins with a discussion of two theories concerning the relationship of man with society, and follows with two different 'ideals' of human relationships which writers in Britain tend to support. These 'Ideals1 are transferrable to the Canadian context as Is partially illustrated by the brief discussion of 'the cultural paradigm'. The paradigm is of importance to the remainder of the essay since the experience of British, United States and Canadian Information Centres seems to be influenced by society's concept of 'human well-being'. Thus the pattern of development of Information Centres is seen in the totality of 'social policy' rather than as one part in isolation. It is emphasised that the essay Is a personal statement of the writer, all omihisslons and generalisations are 'his; and hence it is not to be considered as a definitive, total statement on the subject. 1 Man and Society "Knowledge, power and will are closely related to one another and related in many ways, both in the individual ana In society. Unfortunately, they are not so related that we can assume that, as knowledge accumulates, it will be so distributed among men that it comes to those who have the power and the will to use It for the common good«(1) Throughout recorded history men have argued about the nature and distribution of 'power1 in society. ' Much of what has been written around the concept Is now termed social and political theory - a 'branch' of that all-embracing term, philosophy. It is the nature of man to live in 'communities'. He lives in this fashion in every part of the world today, and the evidence of history and pre-history shows how long he has done so. When people live In a community they cannot do exactly as they like. It follows therefore, that men have asked - 5t¥hat is the !communityf (State) and why do men obey i t ? * ^ Answers to this question have been of two kinds. One Is that the State is an organism^ of which men themselves are parts and which is there-fore greater than they are. it is real and they are merely abstractions. The other Is that it is a machine^ which men create for their own purposes and which is therefore no other than they are. They are real and it is merely a device. At different periods In history, now the one, now the other has been generally accepted. The idea of the State as an organism was hit upon by the Greeks. By the Stoics it was applied to humanity 2 as a whole. It was then taken over by Christianity, and throughout the Middle Ages reigned supreme. It was challenged at the time of the scientific revolution of the 17th Century, which led to the development of the 'mechanistic' view of the State. This view was maintained throughout the Enlightenment of the leth Century, to be rejected again by Rousseau and by the German Romantics, who stressed the 'organic' view as against the 'bloodless' and 'soulless1 mechanistic doctrine. Once again carae the swing of' the pendulum, if for no other reason than that political and ecclesiastical reactionaries, such as Adam Muller and de Kaistre, so enthusiastically embraced the organic doctrine in the hope of using It to repress the new liberal forces which they so much disliked. The mechanistic view yet again came into favour, only to be strongly attacked by the organic view strengthened by 19th Century biological theories and by 20th Century totalitarian practices. Both views still persist and still 'contend for domination over the minds of men'. This division of social and political thinkers into upholders of the organic and mechanistic views of the State Is not, however, the only possible classification of such thinkers. It may be, that a further classification proves more helpful, one which stresses the difference as well as acknowledges the similarities between Aristotle and Hegel, and Plato and Rousseau. This would allot social and political thinkers to three different (5) traditions. The first is the Rational-Natural tradition According to this, Society and the State can be understood only when they are related to an absolute standard, which exists In 3 nature and which is therefore outside human control, but which, j nevertheless, can be known by men through the use ox their j Reason. Society, according to this tradition, must copy the j pattern offered by nature which Reason has apprehended, and if I we want to know whether laws and institutions are good, we have j only to- ask if they are close to copies of the existing natural ; (f \ ' standards. The second is the tradition of Will and Artifice10 . According to this, Society and the State are artifical and not | natural. They are genuinely free creations and not a copying of ; something that already exists in nature. Therefore, according I to this tradition, it is not the Reason of man but the will of : man that is required to produce the State, and human will has j freedom to alter Society. The third is the tradition of Historical j Coherence.^ According to this, both of the other traditions j are defective. Since natural laws have to be changed to suit j civil society, the Rational-Natural tradition, it maintains, is , really neither rational nor natural. And since nan's will is , always limited by the will of others and by what has been willed previously, the tradition of will and artifice, it declares, attributes too much importance both to will and artifice. Hence, the tradition of Historical Coherence attempts to combine the earlier traditions, to fuse Reason and Will as in Rousseau's "General Will** and Hegel's ^Rational Will". It emphasises the : importance of historical growth and denies that absolute standards ; exist. Goodness arid justice, it avers, consist of the coherence j of the part with the whole, and if we want to know what is goodness j i (presently called 'human well-being') we must seek conformity not j | \ 4 with the will and desire of society at any given moment, but with the standard of coherence in that society as it has developed historically over the years. The State, according to this tradition, is not a copy of the natural world. But to some extent It can be seen as natural because it is the result of an historical evolution that can be thought of as part of nature. To some extent, however, It can be regarded as artiflcal, for It is the result of men not following but transforming nature. All believers in the State as machine belong to the still and Artifice tradition. Believers in the State as an organism may belong either to the Rational-Natural tradition or the tradition of Historical Coherence. A discussion of the nature and distribution of power cannot disregard the theoretical conceptual frameworks of social and political theorists outlined above. On the contrary, whilst their relevance is central to further discussion, it must be acknowledged at this stage that both the organic and the mechanistic views of 'man and society* have their strength and weakness. The organic view has the great merit of corresponding to our experience of life at least in this, that it acknowledges that there is a warring within man's members so that too often he does what he would not and what he would that he does not, and it appreciates that when he acts according to his better self he can most truly be called man. It recognizes the different me in a way that mechanistic theory too frequently does not. And more than mechanistic theory it recognizes the existence of the social me. It knows that the individual is never an isolated atom, but 5 is formed to a very large extent by the society in which he lives. Mechanistic theory has sometimes ignored man's social character, and in it the community has not infrequently been hostile to those lesser liberties of associations which organic theory has been very ready to admit are like cells which go to form the whole living organism of 'the State'. Insistence on the social and political effects of environment in its broadest sense, on the consequences of antecedent events, on the great importance of social organisation and the close interdependence of citizens and 'the State*, on the general truth that policies must be bad if they disregard national character, environment and history, and that the end of the State must be kept in view and recognised as something still more important than the temporary satisfaction of the possibly fluctuating demands of the present generation, is a statement to be found much more in the upholders of the organic than the mechanistic view of society. And more than mechanistic theory, organic theory encourages both 'the best' and 'the social' me, for in it society, the greatest of man's creations, is used to help him to achieve the greatest development of which he is capable. Because it encourages the best and the social me it is a more satisfactory explanation of the urge of public duty than writers, such as the Utilitarians, can rise to. The value of the view that society Is an ethical institution with a moral end must be admitted. Organic theory is a reminder that the view of liberty as being left to do what one likes is inadequate, that freedom to be worth while must be positively and not negatively d e f i n e d . ^ 6 (9) The organic theory continues to survive despite its weaknesses and dangers. In any theory in which 'the State' Is real and the individual an abstraction, the danger of the reality engulfing the abstraction is a great one. Organic theory shows that too great an amalgamation of individual and 'state' is as dangerous an ideal as too great emancipation of Individual will. In it man, overshadowed by the institution!s) of 'the State1 too frequently becomes less than man. He Is treated as no more than 'a conduit pipe for the divine energy', as a passive creature for whom things must be done, not as a being who finds fulfilment in positive activity. It can never sufficiently appreciate that individual variation, unlikeness, effort is as necessary for the welfare of mankind as collective activity and mutual support. It tries to give social life an ethical character. But it does not see that individuals raust continually re-create whatever spirit-uality there is in the social whole. Organic theory has been aware more than a great deal of mechanistic theory of the existence and importance of associations, but it never allows them a full and free growth. It has never been aware of other possibilities larger than the entity of 'the State'. Moreover, in organic theory equality is openly regarded as a delusion. For men fulfil different functions, and those functions are not equally important for the maintenance of the whole. The mechanistic theory is strong where the organic theory is weak, weak where the organic theory is strong. Its teaching, that the individual is real and the State only a device, that there is no such thing as a comraom good of the State which is 7 something other than the good of all citizens, is a powerful insistence that the State can justify itself only in so far as it exists for the individuals who compose it. The theory's greatest merit lies in its safeguarding of the individual. It recognises, that individuals differ in natural capacity and there-fore in what they have to offer to the State. But it will not agree that the State has the right to sacrifice them in consequence. It separates State and society, so that society can on .occasion act as a support to the individual in his relationship to the State. It agrees that men may have to resist the State on grounds of conscience. Mechanistic t h e o r y , moreover, lends itself very well to the creation of democratic institutions, thereby providing further safeguards for the individual. It does not make the strong State unnecessarily stronger by giving It an almost religious devotion. It is not committed, as Is organic theory, to the view that the State is the final end of man's evolution. It regards it merely as a device that has proved indispensable in the past and that can give way to something else should some-thing else prove indispensable in the future. But like the organic theory, the mechanistic theory is of course open to criticism. There is nothing spiritual about a machine, nothing that calls out the- best in a man. It Is difficult to deny either that the State can or that It should do this. Perhaps it is not an accident that States which regard themselves as machines seem on the whole more concerned with material than with spiritual values. Mechanistic theory does not take account of the individual's wish to be something better than he is. 8 At least It does not consider that this is something in which the State should have an interest or something which the State can do anything about. There Is certainly truth In the view that in mechanistic theories of the State an adequate account of justice is possible only by surreptitiously substituting the rational spiritual being for the Isolated natural being on • whom the theory rests, so that the fundamental contradiction of Locke and Adam Smith is that they work with natural units and treat them like rational units, thereby demonstrating the Inadequacy of the philosophic movement they represent. Indeed, it is never easy in mechanistic theories to understand the 'alchemy' whereby private interests are turned into public duties. It may be added too, that mechanistic theory has rarely had a sufficient appreciation of the importance of society in developing the citizen. Further, if there are dangers in describing freedom as the pursuit of rational action,, there is aridity In defining it as the absence of restraint, and the frequency with which mechanistic theories do this is significant. And if, as it has been asserted, organic theory lends Itself so readily to the 'new tribalism' (so aptly illustrated by the call: "Bin Reich, Ein Yolk, Sin Puhrer8), it may be that mechanistic theory has done something to bring about that new tribalism by lending itself so readily to the view that: !*We now know that anything which is economically right is also morally right. There can be no conflict between good economics and good morals»^10 ^ . It may be maintained that mechanistic theory is simply unreal, that it does not correspond to our experience. The citizen, says Bradley, "sees 9 the State every day in its practice refute every other doctrine, and do with the moral approval of all what the explicit theory of hardly anyone will morally justify. He sees instincts as better than so-called 'principles'. He sees in the hour of need what are called 'rights' laughed at, 'freedom', the liberty to do what- one pleases trampled on, the claim of the individual trampled under foot, and theories burst like cobwebs". Some of these criticisms might be met by the reply that society Is a living growth, an organism and that this living organism, society, creates for its own convenience the machine that we call the State. Philo wrote, "The discovery of wisdom Is the surpassing good, When this is found all the people will sing." All wisdom is not with either the organic or the mechanistic view of the State, and mankind has as yet bxit learned to croak . Clearly however, they do correspond to existing States. Great Britain Canada and America are clearly examples of the mechanistic State, as Russia Is an example of the organic State. Many men have hoped that both views could exist together. The difficulty of such a situation existing is well illustrated by the Vice-chancellor of Cambridge In his opposition to the scheme of the Eastern Counties Railway:-"to run excursion trains to Cambridge on the Lord's Day with the object of attracting foreigners and undesirable characters to the University of Cambridge on that sacred day.... the Yice-G'hancelior of the University of Cambridge wishes to point out to the Directors of the Eastern Counties Railway that such a proceeding would be as displeasing to Almighty God as it is to the '/ice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge. "(ID 10 A Social Policy Dilemma Writers In the field of public and social policy in the United Kingdom and Canada reflect to a certain extent these views of the State in their writings. Behind each view lies a different Ideal of human relationships, and hence a different conception of the distribution of knowledge, resources and power in society. In the United Kingdom, the first view (quasi-'mechanistic1) Is put forward by a group of writers whose names are associated with the Institute of Economic Affairs.(12} In essence, their view is the mineteenth-century liberal-economic approach adapted to new circumstances. They start from an appreciation of money as a most useful tool in an Industrial society particularly when it is used in a market in which buyers and sellers are in direct contact. It provides a measure of the value that is placed on goods and services, and, therefore, a means of deciding priorities. It Is a convenient method of rewarding work effort and enterprise, and of ensuring, for those who cannot work, that their needs are met. It does this in a way that leaves the maximum responsibility for choice with the individual. By his choice, if monopoly can be prevented, the individual is also able to influence the quality and quantity of the goods and services provided, and ultimately create a balance between supply and demand. This is contrasted with the lack of incentive where needs are met, regardless of individual effort, the lack of choice where goods and services are provided in kind rather than in cash, and the excess demand 11 that Is created where the individual does not have to consider his own priorities. Behind this view of the significance of money as a tool, lies an acceptance of an individualistic approach to life, and of the importance of competition and reward in stimulating individual effort. A competitive system is also a very -useful method of selecting the members of an elite in a meritocracy. This group of writers stress the importance of entrepreneurial and other skills associated with an elite in a technological society, although they accept the need to restrict the monopoly powers of professional groups. A measure of inequality in the distribution of wealth and income is an Inevitable concomitant of a competitive system based on financial rewards. This they accept. However, there is a minimum level of poverty, below which people should not be allowed to-fall, and the State should ensure this by providing for the needs of the poor on a test of means as well as need. The emphasis on individual choice requires that benefits to the poor should be given in cash or some equivalent form which enables them to make their own decisions about priorities in expenditure. The same emphasis on choice makes the writers support a wider extension of private provision of social services in such fields as health and education. They also assume that In a private market, the direct monetary link between the giver and receiver of the services would give the latter more control over the quality of the service. The second view (quasi-'organic1) Is to be found in the writings of R. M. Titmuss, Brian Abel-Smith, Peter Townshend et al. 12 These writers have less faith in the effectiveness of money as a tool for measuring value, for providing a rational basis for deciding social or political priorities, or for relating supply with need. Perhaps even more fundamental is their doubt of the relevance of an individualistic, competitive ethic to the problems of a modern industrial society in which specialisation has reached so high a level that co-operation is I essential for efficiency. Competition Is seen as being destructive as well as constructive in Its effects. It can be destructive because It inhibits co-operation, because it often destroys the self-respect of those who lose out in the struggle, and because it produces anxiety, which at a low level stimulates effort, but at a higher level can paralyse action. Inequalities of wealth and income are seen as undesirable, and in the long run unnecessary. They are undesirable partly because they are inequitable and partly because they are dysfunctional. Relative poverty restricts the opportunities for valuable experiences of many kinds for individuals and families, and results In a waste of their abilities and resources. These inequalities, moreover, tend- to perpetuate a hereditary elite and to concentrate command over resources, and hence power, in the hands of a few. The provision of universal, rather than selective, services is seen as a method, of ensuring that priority is given to need regardless of income, and that the quality of the public services is supported by a strong and influential body of consumers. In the view of these writers it is dangerous to put too much 13 reliance on a single mechanism for managing services as complex as health, education or Income maintenance. The economic market provides a method of assessing demand for a service but not for assessing need; it provides a method of rationing scarce resources, but not a fair one; it provides only a limited control over the quality of complex services. Political action through government or pressure groups is one way by which the individual strengthens his position; social research provides a variety of alternative methods of assessing need as well as demand; social work has developed ways of ensuring a mere adequate dialogue between the consumer and the service, and an alternative method - not necessarily fairer - of rationing resources. Further techniques may be found in time. To some extent these two views (or approaches) epitomise the dilemma of man's situation. On the one hand, each man is an individual, conscious of his Individuality, his personal achievements, and his personal freedom. Yet the full development of individual personality depends on the quality of social relationships; and personal achievement and freedom are enhanced by co-operative action in the control of the environment. Go-operative action requires the surrender of some aspects of personal freedom and some opportunity for Individual initiative, yet if too much freedom is lost, adaptation to change, even change itself, becomes more difficult. In Canada, two writers^^ have expressed the dilemma in social policy as "two different cultural paradigms?sX r In their discussion of the role Information services are at present 14 expected to play In Canadian society, they found:-"...two quite different points of view about human well-being and about how well-being would best be enhanced/ One view held that well-being was best served by increasing the measure of control that people have -over their own lives - by expanding the sphere of voluntary action and altering the essentially Impersonal world man has made for himself to fit much more closely the human nature, the growth and the needs of the person. The other' view was that well-being would be derived from a more efiiciently functioning but Impersonal socio-economic system to which human nature, growth and the needs of persons might need to be adjusted In the process but which would in the end secure human welfare,w These paradigms have their routes In Eui-opean ideas and concepts, more especially ideas about social policy that have been introduced from Britain through the British Influence of the Charter groups in Canada, They form the basis of views that are deeply held by many Anglo-Canadians. 15 Two Styles of Information Services and a Model for Knowledge Dissemination In their study of Community Information Services in Canada, Stewart and Starrs concluded that such services intended for the use of the general public could be seen as being of two more or less distinct types. On the one hand there are Information services which can be described as 'system-centred11, as contributing to the more effective working of existing Institutions, by helping certain categories of persons to find their place in those systems. On the other hand, there are information services whose Images of themselves and their function Is much more that of facilitating communications,of putting people In touch with other people and institutions, these they termed 'person-oriented' information services. 'System-centred' information services tend to insure the more efficient functioning of 'impersonal systems' by providing people with information that would facilitate their adjustment to those systems. In the mechanistic societies of Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States, today, the dominant mode of living consists of Impersonal systems. In this environment, Information services have constituted a service which has been designed for the most part to enhance well-being through facilit-ating personal adjustments to these systems - how to comply with regulations, what is the range of available options, etc. Thus many of these centres have been shapfed by the precepts of system specialists who have constituted their staff - social workers, 16 manpower counsellors, marriage counsellors, librarians - with the result that all have tended to treat their users as specialized too - consumers, workers, book-borrowers. It is Stewart and Starr's opinion that each projects a 'less-than-full' image of man. . Communication through these services has tended to flow one-way-out to the user. The reality of the system-centred view of information services is strengthened by research and publications in the field of the dissemination and utilization of knowledge. (15) Havelock et al, in their examination of some 4,000 studies published between 1950 and 1969 around the concept of knowledge dissemination and utilization, Innovation and technological change, in the field of social services were able to devise a formula which when applied to these studies revealed seven general factors about communication. Both the formula and the general factors are pertinent to the present state of information services. It appears that when the researchers applied the simple formula -"who says x^ hat to whom by what channel and to what effect1* -to the studies, the following general factors appeared with remarkable consistency again and again. Each of these factors can be viewed as a component element of information services as they exist today- i.e. system-centred - as distinct from what they may become or could be - personal-centred. Bach general factor has of course a whole host of variables which are distinct and which could be listed separately. Havelock concludes that 'linkageT is the factor that signifies the degree of inter-personal or inter-group connection; the extent to which mutual communicative relations exist among two or more parties. The more linkages there are and the stronger these linkages are, the more effective will be the day-to-day-contact and exchange of information, hence the greater will be the mutual utilization of knowledge. Most importantly, the greater- the number of overlapping linkages throughout the macro-system of knowledge production and dissemination, the more frequent and the raore effective will be the knowledge utilization by all. Effective dissemination and utilization must take place within a coherent framework, a 'structure* which designates a rational sequence of steps, c departmentalization and co-ordination, division of labour and so forth. Successful utilization activities tend to be structured activities, and useful knowledge is structured knowledge. The extent to which structuring takes place in the sender and receiver and in the message seem to be important correlates of successful dissemination and utilization. 'Openness', the readiness to give and to receive new information, is fundamental to effective utilization. It Is a prerequisite to 'linkage' and a necessary complement to 'structure'. Closed systems and closed minds are by definition, incapable of taking in important new messages from outside; if they cannot take In, they cannot utilize knowledge for internal change. Openness is a vitally important quality of innovative knowledge utilizing systems. Havelock indicates that the literature is particularly convincing In suggesting that there Is a general factor of 'Capacity' or competence accounting for much of the variance in diffusion studies. This summary concept ties together the highly is inter-correlated variables of 'wealth', power, status, education, intelligence, and sophistication which are invariably good predictors of successful innovation and utilization. In other words - those who already possess the most in the way of resources and capabilities are the most likely to be able to get even more. The fifth factor concerns 'Reward' - the sender won't send If he doesn't get reward for sending; the receiver won't receive if he doesn't get reward for receiving. The message won't work if it has no reward value, and the medium won't be attended to if it has no reward-giving history. 'Proximity' is a powerful predictor of utilization. (This concept embodies the notion of 'community' and 'neighbourhood'). When we live as neighbours when we bump into one another and have the chance to observe and stimulate one another by reason of being in the same place at _the same time, we will inevitably learn from one another. Hence users who have close proximity to resources are more likely to use them. Anything which is 'handy' is more likely to be used. This generalisation applies equally to people, things and thinking processes. Proximity is also one of the factors which makes linkage more possible and hence more probable. Finally, a variety of messages must be generated pertaining to the same piece of information and these messages must be directed at the potential user on a number of different channels in a number of different formats, and all more or less co-ordinated to the one goal - adoption of innovation. This factor he calls 'Synergy'. Besides these seven general factors which Havelock suggests are 19 present in the system-centred dissemination and utilization of knowledge, he suggests a few others - familiarity, primacy, status and value-loading. Of value-loading he says:-"They presumably lay down the patterns or limits within which people feel free to send and receive knowledge. This suggests that messages which clearly contradict pre-existing values will get nowhere and those which appeal to them will get far. It also suggests that a perception of shared values will bring resource and user systems together and that perceptions of disparate values will drive them apart. Even the medium may have some value loading (as when we reject new Ideas because someone has tried to order or legislate their adoption)." 20 Citizens' Advice Bureaux. Family Advice Centres and the Community Development Project in Britain The image presented by the British Citizens' Advice Bureaux is that of a system-centred, information and advice giving service. As early as 1924*16* Parliament was concerned about the general Ignorance of large groups of British citizens in regard to available forms of assistance and deplored the discontent and bitterness resulting from actual hardship or fancied Injustice. The recommendation made to Parliament at that time was that:-»the best safeguard against the growth of such feelings probably lies in the provision of better facilities for giving advice to persons in need of it as to the general circumstances in which assistance is available from the various authorities. For this purpose, it would be desirable that there should be in every large centre of population - some officer in a position to give reliable Information - his function to be confined to the giving of information and advice to applicants for help, of putting them in touch with the appropriate authority and" of advising any agency as to the procedure to be followed In dealing with difficult cases outside its scope but possibly eligible for some form of assistance. Even before the threat of the Second World War was generally recognized the Idea of establishing Welfare Information Centres was mooted in the 1936 Annual Report of the British Council of Social Services, now the National Council of Social Service, the co-ordinating body which includes in its membership most of the voluntary organizations in Great Britain. Two years later, at the time of the Munich crisis, this same organization, at a. conference of voluntary agencies called to discuss plans for the mobilization of welfare services in 21 the event of war, drew up a plan for the development of advice services in a number of British Centres and particularly In potential target areas. These centres, to be developed under voluntary auspices and with the co-operation of diverse public and private organizations were to be called Citizens Advice Bureaux-. Since such Advice Bureaux would be needed in places where there was little formal organization of social services, the National Council of Social Service agreed to take responsibility for organizing and maintaining Advice Bureaux administered by ad hoc committees representative of the varying interests and. organizations in an area. Such centres were to be organized by citizens for citizens and should recognize no difference of c Isl ss, race or creed. Their stated aims were, and have not been altered:-"To make available for the individual accurate information and skilled advice on many of the • personal problems that arise dally., and to interpret legislation; to help the citizen to benefit from and use wisely the services provided for him by the state". (18) The universality of this purpose in terms of its application to either war or peacetime circumstances Is worthy of note. The bureaux were to be dissociated from patronage, easy of access and open at convenient times. They would not give material aid. However• unprepared Britain may have appeared in 1939, the new conflict was an '"expected war11 for which governmental bodies had been preparing (on paper) "since the late twenties. It was recognized that there would be an attack by air; directed, 22 not at opposing military forces, but at the civilian communities of Great Britain. The planners were prepared to meet the problems of physical casualties and material damage. They knew that social distress comes with war but they saw this distress, not in terms of discomfort and suffering of individuals, but as a possible cause of lowered morale and Ineffective defense, it was the voluntary agencies who affirmed that while the British people might not need all the coffins, mental, hospitals and special military "morale-building" forces planned by the government, they would demand endless cups of tea, help in finding lost relatives - and pets - and someone to listen to their story of "how it happened". By September 1940 it became very evident that, although the authorities had planned for almost every physical exigency from blankets to bomb shelters, eachset of planners had proceeded as if none other existed. let it was estimated that the resettlement of one London family after a bombing usually involved at least six different public authorities -(even the post-Seebohm co-ordination hasn't eliminated this sort of situation). Public officials as well as distressed citizens were ignorant of the location and policies of these myriad sister authorities and misdirection often led to additional hardship and frustration among air raid victims. By 1942 the voluntary Citizens Advice Bureaux, increased to over 600, were, with limited resources, trying to prevent such incidents as the following:-23 ••The 16 year old daughter of a widow bombed out on November 17, 1940, spent the whole of November 18 trying to get a few poinds for some clothes. She first went to the Town Hall, Whitechapel, thence she was directed to 71 Park Lane, thence to tfoburn Road, thence to 166 London Road, Newbury and at the end of the day had achieved nothing." (19) The public authorities were faced with many gigantic tasks, the settlement of residence responsibility in a mobile community, the evacuation problems, manpower demands and shortages. But when the bombs continued they realized they had to find the answer to two much less impressive but irritating problems w(a) How to convey quickly and clearly to those who needed them the facts about social help (b) How to provide these facts, not in a dozen or more different places of Indeterminate address but in one place, centrally located and well known."(20) The method finally adopted late in 1940 was the development .of governmental administrative centres and information centres under the Minister of Health. In the administrative centres officers of various central and local governments were assembled under one roof. Information centres were less ambitious, and their function was to answer the questions of homeless people and direct them-to resources in the community. Often because of the wealth of experience already resident in the voluntary Citizens Advice Bureaux their premises and their personnel were co-opted by government bodies. In time, the provision of these two types of centres became the duty of all local authorities at county council, and county borough council level. Even after government-financed Information centres were 24 established the Citizens Advice Bureaux found their work increasing. The strain of mobilisation created more and more pr obi eras of relationships and adaptation. By 1942 there were 1074 information bureaux, and the government, in recognition of services rendered, gave them grants-in-aid amounting to between i and of the actual cost of Advice Bureaux operations. Beyond the actual services rendered to individuals, the Information Centres and Advice Bureaux served to bring the people of Britain a new appreciation and awareness of the whole fabric of human services available to them. Through the day-to-day involvement of the voluntary and statutory bodies rendering these services came a new sense of a shared basis of community concern with a resulting breaking down of the bogies of "red tape" and '"vested interests". Another ancillary contribution of the Information Centres and Advice Bureaux came through their use of volunteers. Citizen volunteers made up from 70 to 90 percent of bureaux office workers. The emphasis on volunteerism was of course not peculiar to Citizen Advice Bureaux - hundreds of thousands of volunteers were engaged In some form of war service. Such 'service' brought to the individual volunteer a sense of purpose and helped to bring to disrepute the pre-war prophesies of impending national neuroses. With the cessation of hostilities in 1945 the number of Information Centres dropped from over 1,000 to 600. The first National Conference of Citizens Advice Bureaux was held In that 25 year when it was decided that Bureaux should seek to maintain their status as a voluntary service. They would preserve their right to advise the citizen in his best interests, and the freedom to raise issues with any body, statutory or voluntary. Such freedom pre-supposed the removal of grants in aid and the development of independent voluntary units under the National and Local Council of Social Service. In keeping with this declaration, national government grants in aid were withdrawn in 1951, although a large percentage of Citizen Advice Bureaux continued to receive financial support under the provisions of the Local Government Act 1943. This act also encouraged local authorities to establish Civic Information Centres to continue the service that was deemed so valuable by the war-time Information Centres. Not all authorities established such centres, and there was no agreed national standard as there was with the Citizens Advice Bureaux. Many Bureaux found it difficult to survive in the ensuing twenty years following the cessation of the govern-ment grant-in-aid - many closed. With the renewal of grant-in-aid in the mid 1960Ts many Bureaux re-opened so that the number at the present time is 527 Bureaux, staffed by some 6,000 bureaux workers (94^ of whom give of their time voluntarily), and in 1971 received over 1V3 million enquiries. ( 2 1 ) As one of 'the junior partners in the Welfare Firm' , the Citizen Advice Bureaux operate at both national and local level in close co-operation with statutory authorities. The advent of the various changes since the 1970 Local Social Services 26 Act and the subsequent appointment of local Directors of Social Services has not altered this policy in any way. "Most Bureaux have been quick to establish close working relationships with the area and other officers of the new Directors1^22 \ and it is felt that there is room for both statutory and voluntary organizations in the advisory field with legislation growing more and more complex. Essentially Bureaux are to be found in urban and suburban areas. Their presence in rural areas is very scattered, and consequently other agencies are left to deal with many of the problems of rural living. Although the vast majority of the population of England lives in the geographic triangle from Liverpool to London to Bristol, Government enquiries and those sponsored by the Child Poverty Action Groups have indicated how-prevalent are many of the problems of rural England. One wonders whether it wouldn't be possible to re-institute the concept of the mobile Citizens Advice Bureaux, that was so valuable during the war, into the rural areas, so that the work of the CAB could really be called a 'national' service. The day-to-day workings of a typical Bureaux over the last twenty or so years, is perhaps best described by Marjorie Watkins in her recollections as Secretary of the Bethnal Green Bureaux. This personal statement conceptualizes a variety of aspects of the Bureaux. 27 Advising the citizen MARJORIE WATKINS recalls in verse (with apologies to 'Alice ') her twenty-three years as secretary to an East London citizens' advice bureau You are old, Father William, thgyoung man said, And I hear you are quitting, the scene: What about a few words on the life you have led In the hamlet they call Bethnal Green? In the forties, my boy, with the borough in flames, It was forms that claimed all our attention, With coupons and rations, and war damage claims The bombs merely lessened the tension. Oh, come, Father William—the war, I suggest, Was over before I was two; And forms—well, they're hardly heroic, at best. Was there nothing more vital to do? In the fifties, the old man went on, it was rent, With tenants in trouble galore Over rateable value (whatever that meant) And Rachman, a wolf at the door. You are old, Father William—(he fifties are past; Now London's been all rearranged : New boroughs, new councils, new buildings at last— Don't you think it is time you were changed ? In the sixties, the old man retorted with scorn, The game has been ' Find your town ha l l ! ' The citizen knows he is merely a pawn, While the planners are having the ball. So what, Father William, if I may enquire, Do you think you have got for your pains? After so many years, when you come to retire, Do losses outnumber the gains? In my youth, said his father, I found pretty soon I had only one skill to my name: I could listen all day; and it's proved quite a boon. But the only rewards I can claim Are an eye to discern the complaint (and the cure) When a citizen calls in a hurry, And amazement at all he contrives to endure In a world of frustration and worry. Now I've answered four questions, and that is your lot, You're not seeking advice after all! Do you think I can listen all day to such rot? Can't you see there's a queue in the hall? 13 In their study(23) Alfred Kahn et al summarized the purpose of information and referral services in a statement of the basic continuum of functions of the British Citizens Advice Bureaux. These functions extend from simple information giving to a disaster-oriented service, and are summarized as follows. The basic provision is information giving. Narrowly, this means giving factual information without tailoring to the individual situation. Broadly interpreted, the ".function covers advising and assisting to reach designated services. Secondly, advice 2S and guidance. Assisting by applying judgment to the individual circumstances, with exploration of the caller's capability to use service. Thirdly, steering inquirers or directing them to specific resources without establishing Inter-agency contact. The area of personal help and emotional support involves being available for periodic help through conversation or other means. Examples of such a function are found in the mental health field. Completing forms, writing letters, are related services generally requiring face-to-face contact. The fifth function Is that of referral. Specific advice-giving and direct•connections with resource services by the information worker; arrangement of appointments and escort duties are Included. 'Feed-back', the sixth function, covers reporting on service delivery in the community with regard to lack of policy, limitation and operational problems of service delivery to the Individual. This can be termed 'feed-back to'. 'Feed-back fromT the consumer is not attempted at either National or local level. The only direct feedback obtained on consumer satisfaction, be it good or bad, "is given voluntarily and . spontaneously by the enquirer. The indirect feedback is shown by the number of enquirers who state that they have come to the CAB on the recommendation of a satisfied friend or neighbour'^ The traditional policy of Bureaux has been to emphasize impartiality and confidentiality at the expense of publicity, Consequently "their vigour in pursuing any particular case has been more limited than it might have been If they had a more 29 aggressive policy". However, 'the advocacy' function of Bureaux has been intensified in recent years. Greater emphasis is now being placed on the legal aid and advice service offered by many Bureaux. The Individual inquirer (or group) Is assisted to establish eligibility, to appeal a decision unfavourable to him, or- to underscore policy and programme insufficiencies. In this regard,/advocacy is distinct from social action which may be undertaken by neighbourhood service agencies/ but Is not irrelevant to this latter function. Kahn advises that the pursuit of action goals should not be undertaken lightly, since partisanship distorts the programme and changes the clientele of the service in time. The eighth function of the Bureaux is termed 'case-finding'. The information counsellor identifies problems that are not Indicated in the original request for information, and there is a community responsibility to direct or refer the persons concerned. It is of Interest to note that most of the Government Enquiries that have been conducted in the field of the social services since World War II, have received detailed briefs and submissions from the National Citizens Advice Bureaux. Finally, Kahn identifies, "community facilitation service during crisis". This function is Increasingly disappearing as the services of the Social Services Department have become more sophisticated. Volunteer activity in times of emergency is more and more directed through the Womens Royal Voluntary Service - a statutory service of women volunteers, e.g. the East Lynn floods in the 30 1950's, the settlement of Hungarian refugees, the Aberfan mining disaster. Despite their numbers, and wide use of volunteer staff, large sectors of the population needing information have never heard of the Citizens Advice Bureaux. During the last few years alternatives to the CAB have sprung up In urban centres. Such services a s 'The Stall' in lork and Islington operate on an informal and anonymous basis. Staffed by volunteers, the Stall offers verbal and print based information from a small wooden structure literally set up in the market place. The initiative for such a 'service' came from Poverty Action Groups and Welfare Eights Groups. At this stage It is difficult to assess how successful they are because of their essential experimental nature. Lack of continuity of volunteers has impeded their {26) progress but reports indicate that they are able to reach many people who previously constituted the unreached in these two localities. Other groups, such as 'Shelter', have been instrumental In the upsurge of Housing Advice Centres and Welfare Rights store-front offices. Dependent on sporadic volunteer help and financing, these alternative sources of Information and advice are to be found In urban and suburban areas, but are practically non existent in rural areas. Statutory services, established by Act of Parliament, on the other hand, are to be found in rural, urban, and metropolitan areas of Britain. As already mentioned certain authorities, using the powers of the 19h& legislation, established Civic 31 Information Centres within the area of their jurisdiction. These centres, whilst "being easily accessible to the public in centres of cities, do not give advice, seeing their role as that of giving information alone. (07) Kahn in his later studies on social planningv ' makes reference to the statutory Family Advice Centres established by local authorities within their Ghildrens Departments. These centres are evaulated by Leissner ^ ^ in his studies of the Family Advice Services Project. The Family Advice Service concept was one of the manifestations of the growing awareness of Child Care practitioners and theoreticians that 'conditions1 existing in the late 1950's demanded increasing emphasis upon early preventive services, and that preventive measures were needed to counteract or at least compensate for family inadequa-cies and disruptions. Staffed by professional social workers, the centres' functions are similar to those of the Advice Bureaux, with the exception that accountability is to the elected local authority. Further, the staff of the Advice Centres are empowered to give financial assistance and assistance in kind to prevent the need to receive a child into the care of the authorities. Advice Bureaux have very rarely given assistance in cash or kind. The Advice Centres came into being at different times in different areas of the country. Progressive authorities such as the County of Oxfordshire saw the need for 'early preventive measures' as early as 1952. It was not until the 1963 Children 32 and Young Persons Act which followed the reconmienda tions of the Ingleby Committee^^ that Tthe duty' to provide such services was mandatory on all local authorities in England and Wales. With the co-ordination of the Health, welfare and Chlldrens' Services under the Social Services Act 1970, the Advice Centres have expanded their availability to the total community, on a nationwide basis. The Citizens Advice Bureaux in the voluntary sector and the Family Advice Centre In the statutory sector, carry with them the implication that their purpose is chiefly that of helping people how best they might fit into the labour market, the welfare system, the education system and variety of other systems that characterise all developed countries today. Of telling people the nature of the rules under which these systems operate. They can be seen as one more level of red tape which the citizen has fto cut through1, rather than attempts to facilitate decision-making by citizens. In 196S the Government established the Community Development (30) Project . This project is directed and financed from the Home Office in London, and in conjunction with a. selected number of local authorities in England and Wales, e.g. Coventry and Liverpool. As part of an attempt to involve the local community in the project's grass roots activities "information and opinion centres managed and run by the neighbourhood residents themselves" have been opened. 3Funds available through the project's social action fund have enables the project to fund community 33 associations which have come together largely as a result of the project's grass roots activities; these associations now employ ....local people who are providing a range of professional advisory services which have previously been the prerogative of outsiders to the area, either volunteers or professionals, to provide". This use of indigenous workers is a very new experience in the U.K., and offers quite interesting and exciting possibilities of those who have previously been dependent on social services redefining their role in relation to these services, and indeed society at large, so that they themselves realise that they have competence and capacity to help in their neighbourhoods".^31^ The Implication in the provisions of the project is that of a move toward a person-oriented, approach to information and decision-making. Very little has been written about the project^32J and it is difficult at this distance to attempt an evaluation. The approaches to information 'delivery' that have been outlined so far apply in the main to the 'disadvantaged' in Great Britain. The Member of Parliament; the Local Councellor; the Pressure Group (Association or Union); the paid services of a Lawyer; the local and national press, radio and television, whether Crown or Independent Corporation; the local Library (which includes many mobile units); the professional worker (Doctor, Health Visitor, Social Worker, Cleric, Teacher, etc. }-, are but a few of the many avenues whereby information and mis-information is given and received, where 'power' is exercised and 'action' taken. Although each may claim to be the legitimate avenue, It Is clear that, no one person or group exercises the sole prerogative of 'information'. Only through Increased co-operation and co-ordination within and between all the various 'actors', can there be a 'just' flow of 'information'; a clearer Identification of the means of over-coming resistence to change. r I 35 Neighbourhood Information Centres in the U-S.A. Although a few scattered Information and Referral Centres were opened as early as 1921, in the United States - for example in Portland, Oregon, the thrust for the establishment of Information Services came from the confusion precipitated as a , „ , , n , , (33) result of the Involvement of the U.S. In the Second world war Their continuance after the cessation of hostilities was ensured in those areas where Community Chests and Councils perceived that they were instrumental in meeting a variety of * community needsT, and where sufficient professional personnel were available to staff them. In 1940 the Community Chests and Councils of America established a Standing Committee on Information and Referral Services (later to become the Information and Referral Workshop within the National Conference on Social Welfare), and in the same year a session on Information and Referral services was included in the programme of the Rational Conference on Social Work. The previous year, 1947, Alfred Katz, had verbalized much of the resentment which professional social workers felt towards these services, when, at Conference he said:-"Some workers view a referral agency as dangerous because it somehow gets over inevitably into the service function." (34) many of the problems created by professionals which he had identified in 1947 were'still apparent in 1953*-"Special barriers have been unnecessarily created in serving clients for want of enough mutual understanding and respect between the continued service agency and the referral service."(35) 36 However, there were in 1953 some 70 Citizen Information Services in operation, out of the several hundred which had sprung up during the Second World War. The purposes of these centres sound 'familiar7 today:-"(1) To. build and maintain a comprehensive resource file. (2) To act as a community barometer in evaluating the extent to which resources are meeting human need. (3) To interpret health and welfare services to the community** (36) Hampered by lack of personnel, finance and the necessary 'community Impetus' for change, the centres remained small in numbers and generally lacked 'input' from indigenous neighbour-hood volunteers. By the. late 1950's and early 1$6QJ-b a number of forces_3t&d movements in the U.S. gave a new Impetus to the concept of Information and Referral Services within (and without) an integrated Neighbourhood Service Centre. Mot least of these forces were the War on Poverty, the Older Americans' Act, and U.S.P.H.S. spending vast amounts of dollars in the development of demonstration projects for the Chronically 111 and Aging, as (37) well as Health Information Centres. These Centres have grown In number since the I960*s serving In the main, regions of the { C: 1 U.S. with fewest poor families. O'Donnell and Field ° In their recent research found rtthe distribution of the centres seems to be related more to the wealth of the region than to the need for the centres". In their previous Review of the literature published on 37 Keighbourhood Centres(39}, they cite six 'categories' as a reasonable list of requisites to be found in a Centre. Centres should be accessible, easy to get to; acceptable - clean, comfortable and informal; immediate - provide prompt, efficient, Immediate services; comprehensive - offer a full range of usable, on-the-spot services or easy access to other sources by available transportation; integrated - the centres should Insure the co-ordination and integration of services so that they might be more effectively brought to bear on all the problems that people present; ancl responsive - the centres should reflect the needs and desires of the neighbourhood. In addition, u'Donnell and Sullivan found that the centres described by the writers whose works they reviewed, were not solely concerned with these requisites of social service delivery. The 'package' offered by some centres also Included a social action component. This was further supported by a survey they conducted in 1970. In Tl% of the 1,064 centres sampled (of a possible 3,356), social action was a major component; 95% operating as part of their service system Information and Referral Services, and ?6% were involved in client advocacy. Six in every ten centres have been established since 1965 and are located in predominantly low income neighbourhoods, and tend to serve the poor of these areas in disproportionate numbers. They also seem to serve disproportionately large numbers of Negroes. neighbourhood Centres are reaching and serving more people than ever, but they are not available in sufficient numbers to people living in small cities and towns, and rural areas (an observation.previously made In relation to Citizens Advice Bureaux), v&th regard to programmes and services; some are more available than others. The pooling of facilities and the sharing of precious manpower (an echo of the 1950!s) are not wide spread. Though programmes and services are becoming more generally available, the demand for services, O'Donnell points out, maybe outstripping centre capability, and thus centres may begin to resemble traditional bureaucratic agencies and thus defeat their purpose. The evidence Is not too encouraging In the area of neighbourhood representation, neighbourhood residents appear to play only minimal roles In directing and operating centres. It would seem that certain of the requisites Indicated by those writers who were included In the Review of Literature, by O'Donnell and Sullivan, do not appear to be present in the centres represented in the later research study. Although this study undertaken by O'Donnell and Held excluded centres which served a population of less than 10,000; or special groups of persons (e.g. the old or the young); or provided only one type of service (e.g. neighbourhood legal services or neighbourhood health programmes) It would seem to Indicate that even though 'the service' component of centres Is working; 'the_socia.l action' component would seem to fall short of enabling the further participation of citizens in a more equitable distribution of power In the community:-39 "In approaching the problems of the persons they serve, as we have seen, centres seem to stress acting on the persons served and responding to his problems directly rather than trying to exert pressure on society and Its institutions so as to produce changes that would broadly, If indirectly, benefit larger segments of the population. And though a significant proportion of centres engage in social action, the type of action stressed is that of improving or developing the neighbourhood or planning for the more effective co-ordination of services rather than the kind of social and political action that would try to 'change the system'" (41). 40 Canadian Community Information Centres - Vancouver There are a variety of information services now available to Canadians, many having much In common with the British CABs and PACs and the U.S. neighbourhood Information Centre, in that they attempt to provide information and advice to all members of the community. Others specialize in information addressed to specific subject areas or to specific interest groups. Very broadly, these can be clustered into six groupings (1) Information Services operated by Government (2) Information Services operated In conjunction with Government (3) Non-Government commercial Information Outlets (4) Specialized Information Services (5) Non-Governmental non-commercial Information Services (6) Neighbourhood or Community Information Services Interest in the whole area of government Information was renewed following the report of the Federal Governmentls Task Force in August 1969. The Task Force had been set up to over-view the Ill-coordinated and confused system of providing information at the Federal Government level. The report is based on two very basic -and fundamental principles, that:-"...the Government has an obligation to provide full, objective and timely Information; and that the citizens have a right to such information.w (42) It was one of the many recommendations of the Task Force that, rtsteps be taken to reach substantial sections of the Canadian public that are at present outside the mainstream of the Government Information flow". In partial response to this recommendation Information Canada was created by Act of Parliament (Financial Appropriations Act 1970-71) in the Spring of 1970. It consists of about 150 people In addition to the staffs of the Canadian Government Exhibition and the Queen's Printer. Very simply the Department is divided into two branches: "Information - Out which is responsible for producing information, and Information - In, which is responsible for collecting information.*1^-^ Shortly after it was established, Information Canada opened the National Enquiry Office which is Intended to be the repository of information relating to all Federal programmes and services and the main channel through which the queries, suggestions and complaints of individual Canadians about these programmes and services can be relayed to the appropriate Department or agency for consideration and action. Information Canada has also opened a street level Enquiry Centre in Ottawa and plans to open ten more of these centres - one in each province - by the end of 1973. In the cities where the Queen's Printers book stores are located, they will be amalgamated with the Enquiry Centres so that verbal and print based information services will be housed, under the same roof. In Britain, the Central Office of Information serves a similar function, except that at present it only offers printed information. The Ottawa 42 (l,L) Office at present is the only Enquiry Office in operation. r It functions primarily as a referral service with a personal touch. Staff members are required to make a personal response to all queries either by telephone or by letter. This direct person-to-person contact is so emphasised that even obvious reference questions handled dally in such places as a public library cannot be referred to a library. Such a referral is considered too 'open-ended1. The Central Resources Index compiled by the office provides accurate, up-to-date information about Government Departments and their programmes. It lists names and phone numbers of Departmental officials and indicates the 'contact1 person who is the direct link between the Department and Information Canada. This index enables queries not answered completely by Information Canada to be referred directly to a particular person in a particular Department. /'Feed-back1 to Government is being pioneered by Information Cam da in a nontlily report to Parliament based on queries received. This is a record of the attitudes and opinions expressed by individuals In their contact with the Office; it is also relayed to the responsible Departmental authority, as well as to the Federal M.P, representing the citizens riding. By far the highest number of enquiries received are In the area ( l r \ of Health and Welfare. It is hoped that the Vancouver Enquiry Office will be opened sometime this S p r i n g . H o w e v e r , there are a number of Regional Offices of Government Departments in the City, each 43 of which has an officer designated to deal with information of the Public Eielations type, e.g. the Department of Consumer Affairs. ^'' ^  Information Is very often of the one-way 'information - out' type and very little is done to elicit a 'two-way' flow of communication. At present there Is no service in British Columbia, comparable to the Advice Information and Direction Centre in Calgary, a service operated in conjunction with the provincial government. Hun as a preventive service project by the City's Social Service Department and staffed by personnel from that Department, the service operates out of a separate store-front location in the down-town core. Financed entirely by the t province and the City of Calgary, it Is similar to the Information and Opinion Centres established in the Development Project areas In Britain with a Family Advice Centre component. In addition it offers an emergency, out of business hours, service (similar to the Crisis Centre in Vancouver and the Samaritans in Britain) Most British Local Authority Social Service Departments have a member of' staff who is responsible for 'out-of-hours' crises. Recent grievances over the low pay these officers receive for out-of-hours duty, has been given 'sympathetic consideration' by the British Government. The non-government Commercial Information Services are even more numerous than government outlets. Chief among these 44 are the newspapers which not only convey information in their daily news columns but also through their classified and other advertisements. In Vancouver, 'The Province' and 'The Sun' have a considerable readership, and a number of local papers also flourish, e.g. The Kerrisdale Courier, The Highland Herald, The Helpful Neighbour, and The Georgia Straight. 'The Province' (49) carries one of Canada's five 'action line' columns.' some 5,000 Canadians take their problems to the Action Liners each week. The column in The Province is directed by Ray Chatelin. Set up in June 1969 It handles approximately 60 letters dally, on any problem, from people within the circulation area of the paper. It normally takes about three weeks to solve a problem or complaint, i.e. those that are not referred directly to 'the appropriate agency'. Problems where there pi a degree of 'self-interest ' on the part of the complainant are not dealt with by the Action line. It seems that the criteria for defining 'self-interest ' is left to the Director and his assistant. Although an increasing number of•volunteer organizations (e.g. Legal Aid organisations) and self-help groups now provide action line services there are still a large number of women, and "people in lower socio-economic groups" who write to the paper to seek help. The former group, it is argued, "have more time to handle joint family problems than their husbands", and the latter may be well under-represented because they lack the necessary writing skills to use the Action Line. Recently, despite Chatelin's assurance that "society is starting to provide the sort of 45 service the public needs", Action Line is handling an increasing (50) number of problems involving welfare, unemployment, "and gut issues like food, clothing and housing". A reduction in the column's budget in the summer of 1971, curtailed the telephone/action Line service which had answered some seventy-five to one hundred calls a day, on a personal basis. At the time, there were more staff, and "people seemed to want more human contact", and when it was provided the column got more calls. The counterpart of Action Line on commercial radio, and to a lesser extent on Channel 10 television, Is the 'Hot-Line' or 'Open Line' radio programme. The voices of lack Webster, Pat Burns, and Jim Mac Donald are well known to listeners of commercial radio stations In the Vancouver area. Print-based material and documentation of the activities of these programmes is extremely difficult to find. It seems that topics for discussion are dependent on their topicality and appeal to the owner of the station, producer of the programme, and radio announcer. Having been unable to obtain statistical breakdowns on the number of callers who are heard as compared as to the number of callers that are not heard; the areas from which people telephone, and the age-grouping of' the callers it is difficult to assess the contribution of open line shows. Perhaps it can be generalized, that the listening audience may become more 'aware and conscious' of topics presented on the air, but whether individual or group action follows will have to await further 46 research, and the Report of the Canadian Radio - Television Commission on Community Programming. In certain individual cases the announcer is able to act as case-advocate and link, on the open line, to a contact person in the agency or (5" institution with whom the caller is experiencing difficulties, and who is usually known personally to the announcer. However, accessibility to a telephone and the ability to verbalize one's problem over the air, with at times a hostile announcer, may act as a deterent to the use of such a commercial service by many persons. (Assuming that the open line can be viewed as a service to the community, and not simply a medium for the broadening of the ego of the announcer I j Other commercial services include employment agencies, real estate agents, a variety of professional, scientific and technical information services, and the information dispensed by the counselling professions, - law, medicine, social work and the many consultant services. The service provided by the B.C. Telephone Company, through its 'yellow pages' is of importance in this context; A cursory glance through the pages will produce numerous examples of these services. Accessibility to the service and the ability to pay a 'fee for service' are only two of the obstacles placed in the way of people hampered by "cumulative pressures..., people deprived of the kind of control over basic decisions which many of us take for granted. Libraries have always occupied an important place in the field of information dissemination - indeed in some areas of 47 Vancouver they are the only source of general Information. Traditionally they have been an outlet for print-based information, although recently, one branch has expanded its (53) facilities with senior citizens in mind by providing a forum " where older people can meet have a cup of tea or coffee ( Kj, ) (a) a game of cards or a chat". At another b r a n c h ' the library has been integrated Into a complex of facilities offering social service as well as Information and referral. However, with the increasing number of Information Centres being opened, not only in Vancouver, but 3. CP OS 8 OS. nada, there is concern that the libraries traditional prerogative, as the source of Public Information is being challenged and eclipsed:-"....agencies outside of the Public Library Movement are trying to put limitations on the services provided by Public Libraries. They feel that the Public Library should carry on the work that they were doing a generation or two ago, but that any new information services such as many libraries are providing today should be severely curtailed and cut down." (56) Since the early days of Information Canada, that organization has engaged in discussions with the Canadian Library Association to consider means by which they can co-operate in " forging an information chain which shall be economically, dependable and at f 57) the service of every Canadian". y' The fourth group of Information Centres mentioned above, Specialized Information Centres, are run on a non-profit basis for particular groups in the community in question. Here in Vancouver the term is Interchangeable with certain of the self-(5r, ) help groups that exist xn the City. Groups that serve the 46" economically disadvantaged In the City such as U.C.W.I.C., the Gastown Workshop and the Alliance of Displaced Canadians operate information services geared specifically to this group of people in the community. At the same time they are engaged in a variety ofother inter-related activities. In addition, there -are specialised information services dealing only with matters of interest to youth - the Crisis Centre and Cool-Aid are examples of this kind of service. Legal and medical clinics, such as those operated out of the Reach Clinic, run on a voluntary basis by professionals, the Womens Bureaux and the Native Indian Information Centre recently opened in Gastown are further examples of this 'specialised* form of Information Centre. The fifth and sixth group of Information Centres and Services mentioned above have merged together here In Vancouver during the last few months with the inception of the Information Services Joint Committee (1.5.J.C,) under the auspices of the United "(59) Community Services of Greater Vancouver, Some twenty years ago, Donalda IIcEae wrote her K.S.W. thesis on 'The Community Information Service of the Community Chest and Council Vancouver'. ^  She, it was who, later became the first staff person of the Central Information Service that had been opened in June 1953. Prior to that there had been a short-lived Referral Centre established in 1940 - it lasted from March to August. During the years from 1944 onwards, the concept had been i 49 one of considerable discussion amongst the Social Planning Committee of United Community Services (U.C.S.), It wasn't / however, until some ten years later that it materialised. With financial support from 'key financially participating . T(61) agencies' , and volunteer staff from the Junior League the service was directed by a professional social worker from the outset. The five stated aims of the service as set forth in the first report of the Study Committee In 1951 seem similar in many ways to the functions listed by Kahn in his study of the Citizen Advice Bureaux:-n (1) To give accurate Information to any individual or organization on the health and welfare and related services In the Greater Vancouver Area. (2) To refer persons to the proper source of service. (3) To direct people who wish to offer their services in the health and welfare field to the proper agency. (4) To accumulate data which will show where needed services are lacking or inadequate. (5) To prepare and maintain a directory of health, welfare and other community services for distribution in the community." {62} Hampered by changes of venue within the ti.G.S. building, and the difficulty of retaining volunteers, the Central Information Service has developed, essentially as a 'telephone Information Service1. The present Executive Secretary, Elaine Keen, was appointed in 1958. The following year the Junior League volunteers were disbanded, leaving the Secretary and a Stenographer. Two years later in 1961, the Stenographer's 50 services were withdrawn, and for the last ten years or so until July 1971, the service has been operated, due to budget limitations, by the Executive Secretary alone. The Directory of Social Services published by U.C.S. is the responsibility of the Secretary and has been one of the few print-based sources of social service agencies and outlets available in the Vancouver area (another equally valuable source Is the B.C. Access Catalogue)} t Confined to the ground floor of the U.C.S. building, contact with citizens has been minimal { (3 ify ) over the last few years, so that the Central Service has relied almost entirely on enquiries by letter and telephone. During vacations and other absence by the Secretary, 'service' was handled on an irregular basis, so that the stated aims of the service were not being met. A U.C.S. report of 1970^5) saw the future function of the Central Information Service as being one of 'consultation, co-ordination, and development of standards In relation to information services', although it recognized that this could not be adequately dealt with without more staff. In July, 1971, staff were employed from the Vancouver Opportunities Programme to help the Secretary; and at that time personnel were employed to develop a Central Cardex of community services in the Greater (66) Vancouver Area . The rapid 'turnover' in staff recruited from the Vancouver Opportunities'Programme to assist the Secretary, has meant that a number of persons have 'come and gone' over the 51 last months, each requiring a degree of training. This has tended to hamper the consulting and co-ordinating role of the Central Service by restricting the available time of the Secretary. The Central Information Service could be included in the fifth grouping above. The sixth grouping is the neighbourhood, or Community Information Centre. The Public Policy Concern's Report mentioned previously Is the first overall study of Canadian Community Information Centres. At the present time the Consumers Association of Canada Is undertaking a detailed study of Community Information Centres^67](C.I.C.) across Canada, including Vancouver, for the Canadian Computer/Communi cat ions Task Force, and their report is expected In the immediate future . In the City of Vancouver there are eight such C. 1.0. In operation at the present time, with the possibility of others being opened'in the near future ^ 9). They have developed in the City over the period of time since 1964, serving specific areas and combining a number of functions with information and referral as only one of those defined purposes. In two or three areas of Vancouver - Strathcona and Orchard Park, Centres have closed for a variety of reasons and have not re-opened. Lack of support from volunteers and community participation, even in a minimal form, are two of the reasons for closure. Various reports over the last few years have given accounts (70 ' of the development of the Centres here in Vancouver '. It is 52 interesting to note from these reports that students from the School of Social Work at U.B.C. have been actively involved in the early stages of growth of some of the Centres, and there has been continued 'use' of them as field-work placements up to the present time. Borne of the Centres are seen as neighbourhood centres for social action by local groups of citizens, and vehicles (or links) for community development; some offer a range of specific services such as legal aid, housing registry; some act as multi-service centres with space for workers from various public and private agencies; and some are seen as the headquarters of the Local Area Council. Despite their differences, - (they jealously guard their Individual autonomy which lias resulted from local initiative and therefore reflects the particular needs and wishes of those Involved; they tend to concentrate on problem areas common to residents of their particular locality) - they have a number of commonalities. These are to some extent reflected In the criteria for funding accepted at a j®int meeting of Centre Staff in (71) February 19'/1 » All centres operate under the auspices of a Local Area Council or similar body, and have a common funding procedure i.e. a Civic Grant to pay for 'heat and rent', and a U.C.S. grant to pay for 'operating' expenses. The use of 'volunteer' personnel, and personnel financed under the Vancouver Opportunities Programme, is common to all. In addition, all centres 'utilize' the services of staff who are financed from the 53 Federal local Initiative Programme. Ninety-nine percent of staff are women. All of the Centres have the one common function of acting as a source of information, advice and referral. Neighbourhood Services Association (N.S.A.) are l no } involved In each Centre except one w ' through the Centre's Staff -Person i.e. N.S.A. pays their salary as either Information Centre Counsellor or Community Ddvelopment Worker. Five of the eight Centres operate out of a 'store front'; one from the basement of a house; one from a Neighbourhood Services Centre axid one from a trailer. Most Centres comply with the 'requisite^ outlined by O'Donnell and Sullivan In their study above. All provide audited financial statements of their activities and attempt to maintain accurate records, although there Is not as yet a common recording format. This makes it difficult at times to assess whether the enquirers and the enquiries make It possible to describe the Centres as 'person-oriented' or 'system-centred' (i.e. the Centres may be acting merely as a referral outlet for an established agency j. Each Centre provides on-the-job training for its personnel i.e. those who give of their time voluntarily and those who are 'employed' as members of the centre team under one of the Programmes above. Recently attempts have been made to co-ordinate 'orientation and training' under the auspices of the I.S.J.C., of which each Centre Is a member. What training there is, is rudimentary, - (unlike the detailed training volunteers 54 receive In Citizens Advice Bureaux). This may be a great advantage, and although the following passage would be viewed by some as 'idealistic1, in the writer's opinion it does come close to applying to the Vancouver volunteer staff:-"Rather than dealing with enquiries according to the dictates of 'professional' ways of doing things, -they tend to handle, in inventive and in human rather than mechanical ways, whatever problems, interests and concerns their users bring to them. They are more likely to help people to help themselves - to organize their own services or develop their own resources rather than merely to refer to the appropriate government or institution whatever evidence they accumulate as the need for some new service. They do not refuse to let their users share their information at their disposal. They do not make information scarce I.e. 'hold the book in their hands', as It has sometimes been suggested that professionals - i.e. lawyers, teachers, social workers, planners, etc. - tend to do by virtue of their training. Where the information being requested is not known to the operators, both operators and users work together to find a way to obtain that Information.11 (73) Each Centre is available by telephone, but all are not necessarily open during the evenings or at weekends - unlike A.I.D. at Calgary. There is the assumption that 'after-ho-urs needs' are met by citizens using the facilities of services similar to the Crisis Centre and Insight, whether this assump-tion is valid is yet to be clarified by research findings. The fact that the paid 'professional'^74) workers form the core of the personnel at the Centres, does not minimize the prominent role that 'volunteers' play in the operation of the centres. Although the turnover In volunteers is reportedly high, the Centres continue to attract persons willing to give of their time to staff them. The partnership of volunteer and professional is vital to the continuance of the Information Centres, and to avoid the difficulties which arise when a volunteer is unable to handle a problem. It Is all too easy to say 'I don't know' - to turn the enquirer away with the possible result that- the enquirer may never return and may indeed tell (75) others of the inadequacy of the service. y -The local Community Information Centres tend to use the services of the Central Information Service :as the need arises and would resist any attempt that might be made to co-ordinate their activities by that Service. Each Centre has however, accepted the Cardex system worked out by the Central Service, and continues to support I.S.J.G. The latter Committee , under U.C.S. auspices, has acted as a forum for the establishment of a common orientation and training programme, and a medium for discussion of a common symbol that would be used to give the Centres a common 'public image'. (Such a 'common symbol' is used by the C.A.B. - an owl) If such a symbol were adopted it would help the public to identify the Centres. The possibility of legal action which may arise from givin inaccurate or Incomplete information has yet to be tested in a Court of Law. The Attorney General's opinion in this matter is that such action "would have to be brought under the ordinary rules of n e g l i g e n c e ' ^ 7 6 )# <r'he e.A.B. in Britain write :-"It Is a tribute to the accuracy of the information supplied, and the care excercised in the selection and^ training of C.A.B. workers that no such claim has ever been made during the thirty-two years in which the C.A.B. service has existed." It is hoped that in the event of legal action being taken here-in Vancouver someone has thought of obtaining the necessary 56 insurance cover, A detailed description of each Centre could be added as an Appendix to these comments. Each has been visited by the writer and aspects of the Centres' work discussed with the staff. Much has been 'said1 and •written already by other authors. As a brief observation the 'findings' of O'Donnell and Re id's study could perhaps be extended to the Vancouver situation in relation to 'the neighbourhood and persons served'. As a generalisation it can be said that the Community Informa-tion Centres serve areas of the City where predominantly 'working class' people live, in a way, the Centres reinforce (77) those core values which Hoggart has attributed to working class people in Britain. These values he says are:-flthe personal, the concrete and the local... with their attendant attitudes toward...the immediate, the present and the cheerful.n (7$) As a 'friendly link' between citizens, and between citizens and institutions, the Community Information Centres are attempting to combine 'service' and 'action' under one roof. That they provide a 'service' to the community is clear. Their role as part of the total spectrum of citizen action to 'chan.ee the system' does not as yet seem to be universally (79) applicable , and hence the writer finds it difficult to assert that they are, at present, able to, have a positive impact on the distribution of power In the community. Some indeed, argue, that "social action is more the domain of the political processes, rather than the domain of information -57 giving and feedback1*, and that "information groups should not be utilized as instruments of social change or as preferred groups to obtain specific action or results, but rather the]^  should present.... an image of concern for the community as a whole . 58 Some Concluding Observations (Si) "Should there be community information centres?"v ' This seems a hypothetical question at this point in time. Or Is It? licLuhan has written that "The computer, in short, promises by technology, - a Pentecostal condition of universal understanding and unity". (32) At present we await the release of man from the closed systems of the past, by the electron!cult. It hasn't yet arrived, and it may be that the opposite will be the case. Despite 'the specialist explosion' of the years since World War II, the gap between 'the have's' and the 'have not's' has widened and their numbers have increased. Given this social context, the Community Information Centre may be said to provide a medium for the pursuit of 'happiness and freedom' - concepts which are valued so highly by liberals In the Western world. These are very 'grandiloquent' aspirations; hackneyed phrases -polemics » By examining the concept of man in society in the first stage of this essay there has been an attempt to provide a notion 'within1 which, or 'around' which, the concept of 'power', could be Integrated into the ensuing discussion. It seems to the writer that the relationship between man and society and power from the organic and mechanistic viewpoints is fundamentally different. This .fundamental difference is further seen in the 'dilemma! of the vantage points from which writers In Britain approach the subject of social policy. This dilemma seems apparent In approaches to the conception and operation of social policy in Canada. The writer has developed his discussion of Information Centres from this base, which Is hopefully realistic. The British Citizens Advice Bureaux and the Family Advice Centres are attempts by voluntary and statutory authorities to help people fit into the prevailing power system, without disturbing the status quo. It also seems that this is the image projected by the Neighbourhood Information Centre In the United States. The Information and Opinion Centres that are part of the Community Development Project in the United Kingdom, through the process of co-optation also seem to be following the same pattern. The Canadian Community Information Centres, and more specifically those in Vancouver, because of their diversity, 'stand a better chance' of not being co-opted Into the system, and providing a useful avenue for responsible dissent. The Centres cannot afford the luxury of 'confidentiality and impartiality *. Having said that, It must be emphasised that Community Information Centres are only one small part of the Information spectrum, and are used by only a small percentage of the population. There are significant areas in Vancouver (such as Shaughnessy, Dunbar, K.errisdale and Marpole) that do not seem to 'need' an Information Centre, and that most of those in operation are Bast of Fain; this is not to say that 60 such areas may not need a Centre. The North Vancouver Centre -HUB - serves a middle and upper-middle class area with a 'class of enquiries' quite different from those Centres in Vancouver, and in keeping with the needs of the Borth Shore. Perhaps a number of questions about the future of the Centres in Vancouver as they exist at the end of March 1972, could be posed;-How long can Centres survive on a shoe-string budget ? (S3 ) - The Local Initiative Project has attracted paid staff for the period until May 1972. What will happen to the Centres function when the Project ends ? - The use of volunteers is essential to the 'person-orientation' of the Centres. How can they become more effective in the relations with bureaucratic institutions without adopting professional mannerisms? - Can we really conclude that Centres are representative of the needs of the area, when 'the elected base' of the Local Area Council under whose auspices most of them operate, is so small? - Will 'interest' in the Centres continue to be maintained by the local area in the form of increased numbers of resident volunteers, as in the C.A.B. Or will Vancouver follow the U.S. pattern mentioned in 0*Donne11 and Reid's findings? (84) - Ronald Havelock's study mentions 'linkage' as a common factor In the effective dissemination and utilization of knowledge. Is it in the best interest of the community each Centre 'serves' to continue to protect its autonomy at the expense of collective action by all.Centres on common problems? Can there be unity" in diversity? - Should there be more Information Centres - or should the existing -Centres be more effectively 'tied in' with other Information outlets, e.g. Libraries, Radio and Television? 61 In the absence of common recording procedures how is it possible to assess the degree of use of the Centres? Has social work, as a profession, a 'role' In a situation which seems fraught with a form of institutional schizophrenia? • Public attitudes effecting the distribution of power In society change very slowly. Information Centres are only a small part of enabling and promoting this 'change5. Dependent upon whether one follows '"Pilgrim in the valley of Despair", or Micawber in his optimism, the Importance one attaches to their development will be weighted. Perhaps it is more reasonable to follow In the spirit of Pascal: ifWe blame equally those who are sure of the coming of what they think desirable, and those who despair of it, and the Indifferent, and approve only those who hope and who strive for what they hope." {'65) 62 FOOTNOTES 1. Plamenatz, J. "I-San and Society®1 Longmans, London 1965 Vol. 2 p.455 2. For a fuller discussion see Wayper, C.L. "Political Thought11 The English Universities Press London 1965 3. "ibid Chapter 3 P.130-194, and Chapter 4 P.194-247 discusses very fully wThe State as Organism" and v*The State as Class11. Both Chapters are pertinent to this concept. 4. Ibid Chapter 2 p.42-130 deals in greater detail with "The State as machine". 5. The tradition of the Greeks - Aristotle and Plato 6. The tradition of the 17th Century - Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, Jeremy Bentham, John Stuart Mill, Karl Marx. 7. The tradition of the iSth and 19th Century - John Jacques Rousseau, George William Frederick Hegel, Thomas Hill Green, Joseph V. D. Stalin 8 . Berlin, Sir Isiah (Inaugural Lecture} ''Two Concepts of Liberty* Oxford University Press, Oxford 1956, gives a full and clear discourse on the 'positive* and 'negative' definitions of Liberty. 9. The writings of Lewis Mumford and Arnold Toynbee are two works illustrative of this viewpoint 10. Quoted in Wayper, C.L. ibid p.251 11. Quoted in "Wayper, C.L. ibid p.255 12. Such writers as Arthur Seldon, Prof, and iirs. Jewkes, Prof. Lees, Prof. A. Kemp and others. Such of the ensuing discussion follows closely the final Chapter of "Penelope Hall's Social Services of England and Sales", Anthony Forder, Routledge and Kegan Paul, London, 1963. 13. Stewart, G. and Starrs, G. "Community Information Centresn Information Canada, Ottawa 1971 P«25 14. Stewart, G. and Starrs, C. Letter to the writer Jan 13, 1972. 63 15. Havelock, R. G. et al "Planning for Innovation", Institute for Social Research, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1971. An extensive study, with a comprehensive bibliography of material published about the Utilization and Dissemination of Knowledge. See especially Chapter 11. 16. The Report of the Interdepartmental Committee on Public Assistance Administration 1924 17. National Council of Social Service, "Advising the Citizen* London 1950 Chapter 1, p.10 18. ibid "Voluntary Social Servicesn & handbook of Information and Directory of Organizations, London 194$ 19. Titmuss, R. K. "Problems of Social Policy11 H.H.S.O. London 1950 Chapter 12, p.279 20. Ibid, Chapter 13, p.291 21. The term 'junior Partner In the Welfare Firm' is used by David Owen to describe the role of the voluntary (private) sector of the welfare state in his "English Philanthropy 1660-1960" Harvard University Press, 1965 22. Letter to the writer from Sheila Bellamy, Administrative Assistant, The Rational Citizens Advice Bureaux, February 24, 1972 23. Kahn, A, J. et al "Neighbourhood Information Centres" Columbia University Press, New York, 1966 24. McConney, M. and Patillo,E. "Community Information and Crisis Intervention" United Community Services Vancouver, March 1970 25. Letter from Sheila Bellamy, Ibid. 26. See "Welfare Rights Stalls - Problems and Successes" The • National Innovations Centre, Bedford Chambers, Covent Garden, London W.C.2. and "Islington Welfare Rights Stall -6 month Report" Both published in 1971 27. Kahn, A. J. "Theory and Practice of Social Planning," Russell Sage Foundation New York, 19&9, Chapter 10,' p.262-305 "Studies in Social Planning" Russell Sage Foundation, New York, 1961 Chapter 7 P.243-295 64 28. Leissner, A. "Family Advice Services*' Longmans, Toronto, 19&7 ••Advice, Guidance and Assistance "Longmans Toronto, 1971 29. "Report of the Committee on Children and Young Persons" H.M.S.Q. London i960 Cmnd. 1 1 9 1 30. For a critique of the Project see Lapping, A. et al, "Community Action" Fabian Tract 400, London 1970 31. letter to the writer from John Eea Price, Home Office, February 25, 1972 32. See (a) "C.D.P.: A General Outline11 (b) "Community Development Project" (c) Home Office Press Release Dec. 2 1971 •(d) "Hillfields Voice" Social Work Today, June 1970 * 1 uLia^t—» m JJm 1 li' I.1.H.IUI JJI.VH^i il-l.i I I.I II I.I I* • / * * p..5-14 (e) ^Community Development" Municipal and Public Services Journal 22 Jan. 1971 p.113-116 (f) "Community Project" Ktunicipal and Public Services Journal 29 Jan. 1971 p.135-141 33. See for example, "A listing of Veteran's Information Services in 218 Cities" National Social Work Council New York 1945 and ^Close-up on War Time Community Planning" Community November 1942, Vol. kS p.4 an article by Suell; B, and Robinson, E. 34. Katz, A. "Casework methods in a Referral Centre" Welfare Council of Mew York, 1947 35. Buckley, I. "what are the special skills required for the brief contact or Referral Interview11 Rational Council of Social Work 1953 36. National Council of Social Work ^Summary of Information Centre Questionnaire'3. Information Centre Workshop. • Chicago 1952 "Do 1 and R's Need a &ew Model" U.C.S. Detroit, 1970 p.13 J.-and Reid, 0. M. "The Multiservice Neighbourhood Centre" Welfare in Review Play - June- 1971 p.2 Reid ibid p;4 Reid ibid p.S 37. Fraser, £. M. 38. O'Donnell, B. *39. AO. O'Donnell and 41. O'Donnell and *see over 65 39- O'Donnell , E, J. and Sullivan M. M. ^Service Delivery and Social Action through the cighbourhood Centre" welfare in Review i ovember - December 1969 p. 3 42. The Report of the Task Force on Government Information "To Know and be Known" Queen's Printer, Ottawa, 1969 Vol.1, p.49 43« Phillips, R. J. "Information Canada Background8 March 1971 44. "Information '71H Sault Ste. Marie Public Library, Report 45. ibid p.l 46. Ron Gray, is the Officer Designated to carry the responsi-bility for the opening of the Vancouver Office, 'sometime' this year, 47* Lois Smith, is the Information Officer of the Department of Consumer and Corporate Affairs here in Vancouver, for example. Her title is Regional Consumer Consultant In the Operations Division of the Department. Her job is mainly Public Relations oriented. 48. For- further discussion of this organisation see:-Chad Varah. "The Samaritans" Constable London 1965 J. H. Wallis. "Someone to Turn to" London 1961 49. Edmonds, A. "How the Action Columnists get your Money Back® Chatelaine, October 1971, Vol. 44 Ro, 10 p.42-95. Say Chatelin was interviewed I?th Jan. 1972 50. Specific Issues relevant to Social Policy were covered by Action Line see:-!,The Province" Oct. 19 1970 - consumer affairs • oct. 26 1970 - landlord/tenant rights Mar. 29 1971 - Public Legal Services Apr. 5 1971 - Charter Flights May 10 1971 - The Volunteer Bureau may 17 1971 - Insurance contracts June 21 1971 - Unemployment Insurance Par. 1.19*71 - Small Claims Court Sept. 4 1971 - B.C. Consumer Protection Act Dec. 21 1971 - Consumer Credit 66 51. As an example of 'action1 on a 'hot-line' programme, the case of tree-felling in Victoria could be cited. In this instance, which occurred in 1970 in a neighbourhood of Victoria, tree-felling was halted following a call by a concerned citizen. The announcer 'contacted' officials in City Hall, 'live', who stopped 'the operation' during the programme. The 'contact1 person in City Hall was known personally to the announcer. 52. Municipal and Public Services Journal 29 Jan. 1971 p.137 53. The Public Library at llSl West 6th at the corner of Burrard 54. The Helpful Neighbour Tol. 2 No. 2 February 1972 p.2. 55. Killarney-Praserview Neighbourhood Services Centre, Argyll Drive 56. Kent, C. D. "Informal ReflectionsiS London Public Library, Director. August 17, 1971 p.2 57. Quoted in Stewart, G. and Starrs, C. ibid p.9 5S. A comprehensive list of self-help groups was compiled by A. Campbell, B. Carlisle, R. Millar and M. Redding In the form of a "Directory of Self-Help Groups in Vancouver41, Inner City Project, June 1971. 59. ' See "Proposal for Restructuring the Information Services Joint Committee11 U.C.S. Vancouver, February 1972. 60. McRae, Donalda «Community information Services in Vancouver" M.S.W. Thesis, School of Social Work, U.B.C. 1954 61. Ibid p.63 62. ibid p.63 63. There has been two Editions of the B.C. Access Catalogue to date. Spring '71, and Autumn '?'!. King Edward Annex, 500 Blk, West 12th Avenue, Vancouver 64. McConney, K. and Patillo, R. ibid p.5 65. ibid P*7 66. Gail Koran was responsible for compiling the Cardex system -a copy of which is in the Library of the School of Social Work, U.B.C. 67 The study is under the direction of Diana Ironside, The Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, October 1971. "Canadian Consumer" Consumers Association of Canada January/February 1972 p.lo The elght Centres in operation are: The Red Door - opened - 1964 Grandview 1966 (spring) Kitsllano 1§69 (March) Frog Hollow 1969 (spring) Action Centre 1969 (October) West End 1971 Mt. Pleasant 1971 Cedar Cottage 1971 (June) Two are to open shortly at Point Grey and Renfrew Collingwood. Three have closed In the past - Orchard Park, Strathcona, Rainbow City Hall. McConney, H. and Patillo, R. Ibid KcRae, D. ibid Marzari, 0 "The Praxeology of the Information Centre Selander, A. "The Red Door® and studies published by U.C.S. Vancouver in relation to the Area Develop-ment Project Kitsllano Area Council. Minutes of Council meetings contain a wealth of information about the develop-ment of the Centre. The Minutes of the various area Councils, are further sources of material. Brief to U.C.S.and City of Vancouver: A Proposal for Long Term Financing for neighbourhood Informa-tion Centres. Final Draft February lS,1971 P-3 Mount Pleasant Information Centre "Canadian Consumer" ibid p.19 This tern has to be 'treated with caution' since some centres have Community Development workers on staff (professional) other information Centre • Co-ordinators (non-professional) Here Havelock's factor of Reward is useful. A comment that could be added Is that different users of knowledge have different characteristic patterns of information seeking. An important variable Involved in such a search is thr reliance on friends and relatives (residual) versus Impersonal sources (mainly institutional), or a reliance on local as against non-local sources. Studies in the areas of agriculture, education and drug-dissemin-atlon in the 1960's have generally Indicated that formal sources feature most highly at the adoption of the innovation process, but little is known in relation to the lower socio-economic groups where access to information Is at an entirely different level. Current studies in the area of preventive public health here in the Mt. Pleasant area, of Vancouver, may reveal adoption patterns that will prove helpful in the future for Information Centre 'delivery®. Letter to the writer from Hon. Leslie Peterson, Attorney General, B.C. Hoggart, E. «The Uses of Literacy" Penguin, London 1963 A definitive and excellent work on working class life in Britain - probably the finest of its kind. See especially Part I Chapters 1-5 p.13-163 The term 'friendly models' is now being used in the field of the Health Sciences 'Advocacy', and 'social action' were discussed in this context at the Hational Consultation on Community Information and Referral Services, June 1971. The Action Centre, is currently 'Involved' In local action regarding the Knight Street Bridge; Grandvlew-W'oodlands in local action regarding the Britannia complex and Frog Hollow, the Thunderbird Community School. Helling, R. A. "Issues for Citizen Information Services" .The Canadian Council on Social Development Ottawa 1972. p.31 Ibid p.55 Duffy, D. "Marshall McLuhan" McClelland and Stewart, Toronto 1969. p32. " 69 S3. The Vancouver City Health and Social Services Committee at their Meeting in February 1972, accepted the recommendation of the City's Director of Social Planning that Information Centres be financed on a shoe-string budget. The exception may be the West End Centre, which may be incor-porated into a Health and Welfare complex to be built In the area. 64• -I.e. "neighbourhood residents appear to play only a minimal role in directing and operating centres9 $5. Plamenatz, J. ibid p.457 70 BIBLluGRAPHY Note:- :A selected list of material on information and referral services was prepared In Play 1971 for the Public Policy Gonera's study "Community Information Centres", commissioned by Information Canada. This list Is some 12 pages In length, and contains most of the material published on the subject. :Dr. Nicholas long, Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies, 123 last Grant Street, Minneapolis, Minnesota, is in the process of completing an Annotated Bibliography on Information Centres. To reproduce the same list of books covered by both of the above sources would be repetitious ana unnecessary. The reader Is referred to the Library School of Social Work for access to the lists. The following are books and articles not included In either of the above. Barcelo, M. et al. "Information for Urban Affairs in Canada" Canadian Council on Urban and Regional Research, Ottawa 1971. Berlin, Sir Isiah, "Two Concepts of Liberty" Oxford University Press, Oxford 1953 British Columbia Access «B.C. Access Catalogue" Two Editions 1971, 1972 King Edward Avenue, 500 Blk. west 12th Ave. Vancouver Campbell, A. et al »A Directory of Self-Help Groups In Vancouver" Inner-city Project, June 1971 Canadian Council on Social Development "Issues for Citizen Information Centres" Ottawa 1972 Consumer's Association of Canada "Canadian Consumer" a bi-monthly publication. "Community Information; an Annotated Catalogue" Ottawa 1970 "Submission to the Canadian Radio-Television Commission on Community Programming" Ottawa April 1971 Department of Consumer and Corporate Affairs, Ottawa "Annual Report 1970" "The Department and its Functions,f Duffy D. "ilarshall McLuhan* McClelland and Stewart, Toronto 1959 Border A. "Penelope Hall's Social Services of England and Wales11 Routledge and Kegan Paul. London 1969 71 Edmonds, A. "How the Action Lines get your Honey Back" Chatelaine October 1971, Vol.44 Ho.10 Fraser, K. K. aDo I and R's Feed a Hew Model" Paper presented at the Information and Referral Workshop, National Conference on Social Welfare Biay 1969 .ttDoing our Thing Together" Paper presented at the Information and Referral Jorkshop, Rational Conference on Social Welfare :,ay 1971. Havelock, Ft. "Planning for Innovation" Institute for Social Research, The University of Ann Arbor, Michigan 1971. Health and Welfare Council of Central Maryland ".Description of Operation of the Information and Referral Services" Baltimore, Maryland October 1971. Hoggard, R. "The Uses of Literacy" Chatto and Windus, London 1957 Islington Poverty Action Group "Welafre Rights Stall" 1971 (6-month Report) Lapping, A. et al, "Community Action" Tract 400, Fabian Society, London 1970 "More Power to the People11 Longmans, London 1968 Leissner, A. "Family Advice Services'1 Longmans, Toronto 1907 "Advice, Guidance and Assistance", Longmans, Toronto 1971 Lithwick, N. H. "Urban Canada; problems and prospects". C.M.H.C. Ottawa, December 1970 March, M.S. "One Man's Dream of Information Centres" The Ontario Welfare Reporter Summer 1968* Marzari, D. "The Praxeology of the Information Centre" Selected Sssays. 1967-1968 School of Social Work, U.B.C. McConney, M. and Patillo, R. "Community Information and Crisis Intervention" U.C.S., Vancouver, 1970 McRae, D. "Community Information Services in Vancouver" M.S.W. Thesis School of Social Work, 1954 Municipal and Public Services Journal - a weekly review of local government activity in Great Britain. Rational Innovations Centre Welfare Rights Stall - Problems and Successes" Bedford Chambers, Covent Garden, London 1971 Rational Social Work Council "A listing of Veteran Information cervices in 218 Cities'- Pew iork 1945 72 r-c' National Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 1966-1960 London, I96S "Training in the Citizens Advice Bureaux Service" London, 1969 "The Volunteer in C;A.B.a London, 1969 '-O'Donnell, E. J. and Reid, 0. II. "The Multiservice Neighbourhood Centre, Preliminary Findings from a National Survey" Welfare in Review May - June 1971 "Service Integration" Welfare in Review, November-December 1971. Owen, D. "English Philanthropy 1660-1960Harvard University Press 1965 Phillips.,K. J. "Information Canada Background" Information Canada, Ottawa, March 1971 Plamenatz, J. 1 and Society" Longmans, London 1965 I|ffhe Province", Vancouver see Footnotes for selected articles 'Purvine, K. "Human Relations Adviser11 School of Social work Rutgers University, Hew York December 1969 "The Information Counsellor: Indentif!cation of an emerging social work role and educational plan for its Development" School of Social Work Rutgers University New York, July 1970 "Report of the Committee on Children and Young Persons" Crand 1191 H.M.S.O. London i960 ^Report on the Circumstances of Families" K.M.S.O. London 1969 Robson, W. A. and Crick, B. "The Future of the Social Services" Penguin, London, 1970 Selander, A. -et al, The various publications connected with the area Development Project U.C.S. Vancouver, 1964-196S Social Planning and Research Council of Hamilton District, Ontario i8Pceport of the ays and Means Committee on Developing Neighbourhood Services3 1969 Szasz, G. "Rural Health Care Network" Draft proposal submitted to Dean McCreary, Health Sciences Centre, October 1971 Titmuss, R. M. "Problems of Social Policy" H.M.S.O. London 1950 "Commitment to Welfare" George Allen & Unwin London, I96B United Community Cervices of Greater Vancouver "Proposal for Restructuring the Information Services Joint Cortim It t ee» February 19 72 "Oraft rroposal on Common Funding" February 1971 73 Varah, C. "The Samaritans" Constable, London 1965 wallis, J. H. 3Someone to Turn to* London 1961 

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