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Robinson, Virginia Pollard

To a degree rare in social work education her view of her tasks was marked by a sustained interest in and respect for the field of social work practice, while at the same time she maintained a scholarly perspective upon the field as a rich source for study, learning and teaching. Even more significantly for the School, the nature of Robinson’s interest in social work as related to professional education suggested methods of interchange and patterns of relationship between classroom and field work which have proven steadily fruitful through the years and remain widely recognized as effective in preparing the student both in comprehension of his task and in be- ginning competence in practice.Continue Reading »

The Plan to End Poverty in California (EPIC)

The nomination of an avowed socialist to head the Democratic party ticket was more than the California establishment could tolerate. Sinclair’s radical candidacy was opposed by just about every establishment force in California. The media virtually demonized Sinclair through a concerted propaganda campaign based largely on smears and falsehoods. Sinclair’s candidacy also set off a bitter political battle both within the Democratic party and with many groups who were opposed to various aspects of the EPIC plan. Sinclair was denounced as a “Red” and “crackpot” and the Democratic establishment sought to derail his candidacy. Despite all of this, Upton Sinclair was very nearly elected Governor of California in 1934.Continue Reading »

Perkins, Frances: The Roosevelt Years

The Labor department that Perkins found called into play all her research and political skills. It was corrupt and inefficient and hadn’t accomplished much. Many were removed and some eventually went to jail. No detail was too small. In her shabby offices cockroaches were found. This was because black employees were not allowed to use the department cafeteria and brought their lunches to work. She and her secretary cleaned the office and soon ordered the cafeteria to be integrated.Continue Reading »

Perkins, Frances, Change Agent

In 1913 Perkins married Paul Caldell Wilson. He was handsome, rich and a progressive. She defied convention and kept her maiden name. After several attempts at conceiving a daughter was born. Life did not treat Frances well. Both husband and daughter were depressed and institutionalized for long periods. While she had some help with living from her wealthy friends Frances paid their bills until they died. She also dealt with a myriad of stresses they introduced into her life. She did not believe in divorce. Despite her personal miseries Frances continued to develop her political skills.Continue Reading »

Miss Bailey Says…#10

What can the relief worker do when:

• Practically every relief family in a foreign-speaking neighborhood finds the price of a ton of grapes for its year’s supply of wine?

• A family steadfastly refuses to give any information about a relative who regularly pays their rent and sends them occasional boxes of luxurious clothes?

• The family of five which is suddenly augmented by three half-grown children who, it is calmly explained, have been visiting their “auntie,” hitherto unheard of?Continue Reading »

Miss Bailey Says…#9

What shall the home visitor do about:

• The unemployed son of the house who brings home an unemployed bride?
What shall the home visitor do about:
• The girl who holds out her slender earnings from the family budget and takes title to a cheap fur coat the day the family is dispossessed?
• The able-bodied youth who refused to go to a refestation camp and who has since kept himself in cigarettes by bartering the tidbits of the family grocery order?
• The mother who persistently and successfully connives to swap essentials of the food order for cream to satisfy the “weak stummick” of her 200-pound son?
• The mother who supports her stalwart eldest in his refusal to take a job that requires him to get up at six o’clock in the morning?Continue Reading »

Miss Bailey Says…#8

Families with bank accounts, families with cars, families never before touched by social agencies, now figure large in the “relief population” of these United States. How the new problems they bring, rarely encountered by case workers of a few years ago, are being treated, how workers without extensive training are being prepapred to meet situations calling for quick and discriminating judgment, are the subjects of a series of Survey articles, of which this is the eighth, drawn from day-to-day experience in busy relief offices.Continue Reading »

Miss Bailey Says…#7

What should relief workers do when:

What should relief workers do when:
• A waiting client suddenly throws a paper‑weight across the office and begins to scream
• A client disrupts the waiting‑room with loud threats of what he proposes to do to the interviewer?
• A delegation with banners and baby‑carriages demonstrates noisily under the office windows?
• A large and voluble committee, with police hovering in the background, demands a hearing for its protest against the relief system?Continue Reading »

Miss Bailey Says…#6

What can an unskilled home visitor do when she finds that in families where relief is as adequate as conditions permit:
• Children, under threat of parental whipping, are coming to the office to make special pleas?
• Children and grown‑ups too are making a practice of begging?
• Children are being permitted, even sent, to hang around restaurants and explore garbage‑cans?Continue Reading »

Miss Bailey Says…#5

What about relief investigators who, in visiting families:
• Find a public‑health nurse also on the job?
• Opine that codliver oil is an old wives’ tale?
• Predict the goryness of approaching tonsillectomies?
• Report prenatal patients when the stork is on the wing?Continue Reading »

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