• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Can transpacial placements work? Dicuss the arguments for and against this.

Extracts from this document...


CAN TRANSRACIAL PLACEMENTS WORK? DISCUSS THE ARGUMENTS FOR AND AGAINST THIS. INTRODUCTION Transracial adoption means adopting children of various races, colour, religion that is from all parts of the world. (Silverman, 1993). Numerous arguments have been developed for and against transracial placements; I came to this project with the view that transracial placements are most definitely a positive aspect. Followers of transracial adoptions believe that children fare better psychologically, emotionally and physically when they are placed in a different racial setting. Opponents believe that children should be brought up by parents of the same race in order for the child to obtain a positive sense of racial identity (Williams, 1998). In this project I am going to discuss the arguments for and against transracial adoption/fostering and hope to identify the extent of the problem. I have also completed an interview with a social worker of a local social services adoption team hopefully this will throw a modern day argument into the mixture. I will then discuss what we as qualified social workers should strive to achieve and what implications may be in our way such as implementing anti-discriminatory practice. FINDINGS Transracial adoption began to be practiced more widely after World War II. Children from war torn countries without families were adopted by families in Great Britain and the United States. (Baden, 2001). As more and more racial ethnic minority children within the United States and Great Britain were without families, domestic adoption agencies began to place ethnic minority children with white families who wanted children. In 1972, the National Association for black social workers (NABSW) became concerned about the large numbers of Black/African American children who were being placed with white families. They issued a statement condemning the practice of transracial adoption. The association claims 'preservation of the African American family' as their motive for their stance (About website, 2003). Since that statement was issued which dates back to 1972, a great deal of research into the effects of transracial adoption on transracial adoptees was therefore conducted. ...read more.


It is also suggested that transracial placements pose a threat to the development of a healthy identity in black children (Dean, 1993). Maxine proposes that a child's identity is shaped by external reinforcements, and that black children receive positive reinforcement when they accept white social values. Maxime states; 'most black children in this society are reinforced positively when they show signs of adjustment and acceptance to society and its values. This happens even when society is so often hostile and rejecting to black people (quoted in Ahmed et al 1986, p 102). Those who oppose transracial placements believe that the need for a strong sense of identity, a positive self image is basic to mental health and basic to all children (Dean 1993). Given the importance of positive black images and role models in the development of a healthy black identity, it is argued that transracial placements can never fulfil this fundamental need (Dean, 1993). Arnold et al suggests; 'black families are best able to provide the care and experience needed for a black child to develop a sense of pride in himself and his origins, to achieve a positive racial identity and a well integrated personality' (Arnold et al, 1989, p 424). Another point that the anti transracial placements researchers make is that of social work practice. Brunton and Welch are quoted in Dean's study stating that 'the problem lies not in the reluctance of black people to come forward, but in social services reluctance to accept what is being offered (Brunton and Welch, 1983). It would seem that the arguments against transracial placements are concerned with black identity and the fundamental rights of black people. As Dean suggests; 'for, accepting that black children have differential needs, and that these are of prime importance, necessarily requires accepting that it is desirable for ethnic minorities to maintain a distinct and separate cultural identity' (Dean, 1993). If we accept this claim can transracial placements be justified? RESEARCH CRITICISMS All research is biased in some way. ...read more.


When the conversation wandered onto other subjects I would simply say 'right come on lets talk about transracial placements again'. I accomplished this by using humour. My confidence also grew as the project went on as discussed earlier at the commencement of the project I was rather nervous about the other members of the group. This stems from past experience in lectures. Most of the group are confident to speak out in lectures, I am not, though this is improving. I believe as a team we have learned to let one person speak at a time. At the start of the project everyone tried to speak at once. We created a rule that only one person speaks at a time, when that one person is speaking everyone must listen and not discuss matters with the person next to them, this became quite successful. The impact it has had on my thinking about the topic is basically I changed my mind about whether transracial placements do actually work. At first I thought of course it works, why wouldn't it? However, after researching the topic and discovering the arguments for and against, I have in reality changed my mind. Currently I believe that same race placements should be the first line of enquiry, however if this is not possible the children should then be found other prospective adoptees, this is because research suggests that children are far better off with adoptive parents than in children's homes. If I was to repeat this project or something similar in the future I would like people to work in pairs initially (if the size of the groups were substantial enough). I feel this would keep people on task and if individuals are struggling they have another person to turn to for advice before the group meet up again as a whole. I feel the way we approached the subject i.e. using a modern day slant was decent therefore I feel this is something I would attempt to repeat if faced with a presentation again. WORD COUNT = 3962 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Social Work section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Social Work essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Why are black people and minority ethnic groups more likely to experience poverty than ...

    A National Evaluation of sure start, which was a cross departmental plan where the aims were to improve the life chances of children under the age of four who were growing up in poverty ridden areas, claimed that they had failed to tackle ethnicity, which in its execution was prejudiced or just completely lacking.

  2. Nepotism - research project

    * No two persons of the same family should hold positions in which one of them is directly responsible with regard to the fiscal and personnel status of the other"(www.polity.org.za/html/govt...). One must be careful, though, not to violate the Employment Equity Act (1999), which is intended to promote equal opportunity, eliminate unfair discrimination and implement affirmative measures.

  1. Analyse an intervention that took place on your first practice placement

    I felt that Rita and Paul had a distinct lack of confidence and I aided them to build up their esteem and empower them to recognise their full potential. Germain and Gitterman (1996, cited in Healy, 2005), 'Suggest that the social worker enhances the service user capacities through the methods of enabling, exploring, mobilizing, guiding and facilitating' (p139).

  2. Reflect on the work of the study group presentation and your contribution to it

    Interpersonal communication and decision-making are the skills and attitudes needed for professionals to collaborate interprofessionally. If these skills are not present, then you get a result of the case scenario whereby each profession is unaware of the service user's needs and wants and are not communicating effectively and efficiently to promote this.

  1. An overview of my DP1 placement which will highlight the location of my placement, ...

    and non-intrusive environment, using appropriate eye contact and a soft voice tone. My objective was to discuss the reason for referral and both M and P engaged successfully albeit hesitantly. I believe this was due to my using probing and open questions and a non-judgmental attitude.

  2. Children Young People and Families

    In addition to this referrals may also be made to other agencies such as SureStart, Homestart, Addaction and Barnardo's for example. SureStart is a Government programme which provides support for families and parents in disadvantaged areas. Support includes child care, outreach and home visiting and also primary and community health care.

  1. Agency Placement Observation Report

    listen and assist with the stresses, difficulties and changes that may occur while living with a life-limiting illness. The loss of a significant other causes some people experiencing difficulties to cope with such an experience and ended up in grief situations.


    Whilst health, safety and achievement relate fairly clearly to aspects of children?s lives in which particular services (health, social care and education) might be expected to take a lead. It is less clear in the cases of ?economic well being? or ?making a positive contribution?.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work