Substance abuse is perceived in a variety of ways by different entities. The court system may view substance abuse as a criminal activity. The medical and social work fields may view it as evidence of a disease or disorder. Uninformed individuals may view substance abuse as a personal choice or weakness. Decisions about how to address and respond to this social problem influence the development of effective policies.

This week, you explore the impact of drug policies on clients and populations. You identify the ethical obligations of social workers in changing drug policies. You also identify the impact of social agencies on social issues and analyze social service delivery systems.

The NASW Code of Ethics provides social workers with guidelines and standards for interacting with clients, colleagues, communities, and society, as a whole. These standards govern interactions and professional behavior of social work practitioners. The NASW has also developed specific standards, which are published in the NASW Standards for Social Work Practice With Clients With Substance Use Disorders. These standards emphasize the importance of the competence of social workers. The standards indicate that social workers should be knowledgeable of evidence-based interventions for substance disorders. The confidentiality standard becomes essential as social workers must be informed and comply with federal, state, and local laws about substance use, as well as third-party payee regulations.

For this Discussion, review this week’s resources, including the case Working with Clients with Dual Diagnosis: The Case of Joe,and consider how social policies affect Joe’s circumstances as described in the case study. Then, think about any gaps in service you found in Joe’s case. Finally, reflect on how you might address these gaps or make changes to the policies that affect Joe.

Post an explanation of how drug policies affect Joe’s circumstances, as described in the case study. Then, explain any gaps in service you found in Joe’s case as a result of the drug policies described in the case study. Finally, describe a strategy you might use to address these gaps or make changes to the policies that affect Joe.

Support your post with specific references to the resources. Be sure to provide full APA citations for your references.

Reference

Plummer, S.-B., Makris, S., & Brocksen, S. M. (Eds.). (2014). Social work case studies: Foundation year. Baltimore: MD: Laureate International Universities Publishing. [Vital Source e-reader].

  • “Working with Clients with Dual Diagnosis: The Case of Joe” (pp. 77–78)
 
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