Family Preservation: Making it Work for Asians
Arlington, VA: Child Welfare League of America
Child Welfare v.73 n.4, 1994, pages
Guides social service providers in delivery of culturally sensitive management of family preservation services to Asian American families. Despite the stereotype of Asians being the "model minority," this group continues to face discrimination and integration challenges, especially if they have suffered psychological trauma prior to immigrating. Asian family values revolve around two concepts: (1) filial piety, emphasizing respect for the elderly, sharply defined gender roles, and duty and obedience from all family members to the eldest male; and (2) avoiding "losing face," which promotes conformity and behavior that will only honor the family's reputation. When an Asian family requires social service interventions, it is crucial to capitalize on family strengths, affirm ethnic characteristics such as loyalty and cohesion, and empower the family to find connections within their cultural community to help develop and accept new roles. Culturally sensitive practice principles consist of: (1) following protocol to respect authority figures; (2) describing personal education and experience to instill confidence in Asian clients; (3) remembering that nonverbal messages are crucial; (4) being sensitive to gender assignments for each case; (5) respecting and including elderly family members in decision-making; (6) avoiding challenging or publicly embarrassing family authority figures; and (7) establishing trust by spending adequate time with the Asian family.
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