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 There are two main parts of the job for social workers at ECI. The first part of our job is group therapy. We conduct groups for eligible inmates. The groups each have roughly fifteen inmates at a time and they last anywhere from a few weeks up to six months. Some of the groups that social workers conduct are TESS (Trauma Education and Support for Survivors), Thinking for a Change, Relationships, Communications, Inside Out Dads, and Domestic Violence. Each group has a set curriculum that we follow but we really only facilitate the group, the real group work is done amongst the participants. The second part of our job is release planning for inmates with severe mental illness. Inmates must qualify for social work release planning by having certain mental diagnoses and be actively compliant with taking psychotropic medications. We help these inmates continue their mental health treatment in the community in the area where they will be released. We set up mental health appointments for them as close and accessible to their home plan as we can. Although the state does not find housing for inmates, we do have some places we can refer these inmates to if they are severely mentally ill and will be homeless. Since many of our clients have dual diagnoses the inmates will often be referred to transitional housing that will assist with their substance abuse and the mental health treatment is at another facility but still accessible. 3. Some of the roles associated with my job include facilitator, advocate, case management, broker, educator, counselor, and organizer. 4. My undergraduate degree and passion is in psychology, but in researching what social workers do compared to psychologists, social work was a better fit for me. Social workers can work in so many more areas like schools, private practice, hospitals, government, and prisons and can reach a wide variety of clientele at any given time. I always felt like psychology was very pigeonholed compared to social work and I wanted the flexibility to move around. I can get bored easily with a certain job and social work has so many different avenues to explore that I will get tired long before I will ever experience all of the different jobs that employ social workers. 5. The population that I serve is my favorite. It is adult incarcerated males. This is my sweet spot for social work. 6. There are countless social issues faced by my population. Racism is a big one since most of the incarcerated population in prison is African American. Poverty and homelessness upon release are big areas of concern as well. Sending an inmate out of prison with the local shelter as their home plan is a recipe for disaster. Many of my clients will leave prison with no money which is also setting them up for failure in our society. Many of my clients do not have a high school diploma or GED, so trying to find a job with little education and a felony on their record is even harder. Substance abuse is also a big concern with my population. Many of them are addicted and will continue to fuel their addiction when they are released. Feeding their addiction often leads to criminal activity which lands them right back into prison. 7. Social work and the law always interested me. My final internship was with the Office of the Public Defender and I always enjoyed visiting my clients in prison. I thought I might be able to help them more from the inside. My end goal is working with clients on death row. Since Maryland does not have the death penalty, this is the next best thing. 8. The starting pay for a licensed social worker with a Master’s degree in the state of Maryland is $60,000. It goes up when you get your clinical license and the longer you are employed by the state. Supervisory social workers and clinical supervisors all make considerably more. There is no real cap on the amount of money you can make as a social worker in the prisons. 9. The biggest challenge right now is not being able to do my job because of Covid. Group therapy has been shut down with no real sense of when we will be able to conduct it again. The biggest part of our job is doing groups so without it there is not much left for us to do. Since we are no longer teleworking, we are required to be in the office all day, but client interaction is very limited. 10. My favorite part of my job is doing group therapy. I like preparing for the group, reading over the homework, and getting to see what they are learning about themselves. The parts of my job that I dislike have little to do with the job itself and more about the environment. Working in a prison means a lot of limitations to what we can bring in, the activities we can do with our clients and battling standpoints from custody versus non-custody. Social workers believe in dignity and worth of the person, but the viewpoint of the American criminal justice system is criminals must be punished, and punished harshly. Advocating for our clients is increasingly difficult when we are surrounded by a system that does not see them as human. 11. If I could make one change, it would be housing for inmates when they leave the prison without a home plan. Housing is the biggest barrier to my clients and the hardest to overcome. 12. We work a lot with case management, custody staff, and the discharge nurse. Case management refers a lot of clients to our groups and they make sure that the inmates in our group get assigned to the group and paid throughout their time in our groups. The custody staff is also necessary because they make sure the inmates get to our office when we need them and call them up for groups. They also provide us with protection when we have to go into the housing units to see our clients. They ensure that we are safe when we are walking across the compound or meeting privately with our clients. 13. If I was smart enough and money was no object, I would have become a psychiatrist. Since I am not smart enough to get through medical school though, I think social work is exactly where I am supposed to be. 14. The only other profession that remotely interests me is being a forensic psychiatrist. Again though, I never would have made it through medical school. Psychiatrists can diagnose mental illness and prescribe medications. Although clinical social workers can diagnose, they cannot prescribe the medications that patients need and I have always thought that would be cool. 15. Covid 19 has completely changed the work we do. We cannot have groups right now which is the biggest part of our workload. The inmates have not had face-to-face contact with their families since the pandemic started. Although this is beginning to change, there are so many limitations on it. Mission Statement- The Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services protects the public, its employees, and detainees and offenders under its supervision.Do you similar assignment and would want someone to complete it for you? Click on the ORDER NOW option to get instant services at essayloop.com

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