Journal Article

‘If We Don't Get Back to Where We Were Before’: Working in the Restructured Non-Profit Social Services

Donna Baines

in The British Journal of Social Work

Published on behalf of British Association of Social Workers

Volume 40, issue 3, pages 928-945
Published in print April 2010 | ISSN: 0045-3102
Published online January 2009 | e-ISSN: 1468-263X | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcn176
‘If We Don't Get Back to Where We Were Before’: Working in the Restructured Non-Profit Social Services

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Summary

Drawing on data collected as part of a larger study of the experience of restructuring in the nonprofit (voluntary) social services in Canada and Australia, this article explores the responses to four overlapping interview questions regarding what drew nonprofit social service workers to the sector, what were the positive and negative aspects of working in the sector, and, if given the power, what is the one thing they would change. Responses to these questions highlight the way social service workers wish they could work, factors that impede this work, decrease worker autonomy and increase management control over their labour process. These new findings will be compared to findings from an earlier study of restructuring in the public and nonprofit Canadian social services, highlighting the way that changes in the labour process suppress or facilitate the empowerment of workers, including their capacity to dream of a better future.

Keywords: Nonprofit; labour process; restructuring; Canada/Australia comparison

Journal Article.  6500 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social Work

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