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Word Count: 1,163
The aim of this discussion paper is to examine the situation of a family living in a small rural town As the current condition of the family is a result of long term social economical and political development in the society this paper will apply the structural approach to understand what circumstances have had major influence in precipitating the family into the crisis it is now The focus is on Joe who is long term unemployed and while his wife is dying of cancer he is waiting for trial because of stealing to support his drug habit The house that he is living in with his five years old daughter is in appalling sanitary condition Joes situation The main aspect of the scenario that this paper will focus on is the socio-economic situation of the family particularly Joes unemployment drug addiction and weak parental skills which are influenced by a number of factors Living in a small rural town limited work opportunities isolation difficulties in accessing services and not enough support Long term unemployment stereotyped economic and social disadvantage Patriarchal ideology clearly defined gender roles Drug habit labelled economic hardship Structural social work theory Structural social work which is underpinned by the socialist ideology views social problems as arising from a specific societal context - liberalneo-conservative capitalism rather than from the failings of individuals Mullaly 1997 p 133 It focuses on oppression as the major source of social problems As stated in Mullaly oppression is determined by harm happening to a particular person due to membership in a particular group by means of exploitation marginalisation powerlessness cultural imperialism and violence Capitalist society has established self-perpetuating systems such as the family to reproduce the unequal relationships Payne 1997 p223 Living in a rural town One of the factors having impact on Joes life and his present situation is that he is living in a small rural town The immense restructuring of agriculture
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