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Abstract Social work can cover a variety of issues from the homeless pregnant teenagers the elderly as well as the mental and physically challenged The purpose of this paper is to address and understand the chief function of the field of social work Brueggemann 2002 questions if people are generally healthy but live in an unhealthy society or are people basically unhealthy and live in a healthy society This question was answered by Saul Alinsky in the 1950s Alinksy felt that poverty discrimination economic insecurity and unemployment a disease as well as powerlessness were an unhealthy society Therefore it was not the people but society itself The social work profession addresses a variety of issues from child abuse homelessness teenage pregnancy poverty the elderly as well as the mental and physically challenged The chief purpose of the field of social work according to Anne Minahan nd is to 1 help develop new resource systems to meet the needs of the people 2 establish initial linkages between people and resource systems themselves to make them accessible to each other 3 facilitate and improve interaction between people within resources systems to promote the effective and humane operation of these systems and to make them responsive to peoples needs 4 facilitate ongoing interactions between resources systems to enable them to work together effectively and 5 help people develop and effectively utilize their own internal problem solving and coping resource Minahan nd p 3 According to Brueggemann 2002 there have been many assumptions made in todays society about people from which they are basically unable to solve their own problems and are in need of help Brueggemann questions if people are generally healthy but live in an unhealthy society or are people basically unhealthy in a healthy society Brueggemann 2002 p 48 In further assessing this question I would have to say yes and no Yes in the sense that genetically someone could inherit traits
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