Two single sisters from the Sudan were resettled in Seattle, Washington. During employment orientation, the job developer at their resettlement agency discussed the issue of wearing hijab in the workplace, explaining that, for safety reasons, the women might need to make some accommodations in their attire while at work. A few weeks later, the job developer took one of the sisters to an interview at a hotel. She was surprised to see her client come to the interview without the hijab. The employer was very pleased with the interview, and the Sudanese woman was hired to work as a housekeeper at the hotel. The following day, however, the job developer got a call from the employer. The employer said that the Sudanese woman had arrived for her orientation at the hotel that morning with her head covered, and had explained to the employer that her religion required her to cover her head and to wear long sleeves under her uniform. The employer wanted to know why the woman and the job developer had not addressed this need during the interview. In the meantime, the other sister had found a job at a fast food restaurant with the help of her job developer. During the interview, the refugee woman and the job developer explained to the employer that the woman was planning to wear a hijab and long sleeves at work, and inquired whether this would be a problem. The employer was hesitant at first, but the job developer suggested that the woman could wear the hijab under her cap and a long-sleeved shirt as a part of her uniform. The employer seemed pleased with this suggestion, and the woman was hired to work as a cashier.
As you consider the challenges faced by your client or clients, you recognize that you have a responsibility to take on the role of advocate. Propose an advocacy plan for the client for the selected case study that addresses the following:
- Analyze the counselor’s role in promoting social justice by reducing biases, prejudices, and process of intentional and unintentional oppression and discrimination.
- Describe advocacy strategies to promote social justice for diverse populations at the individual, couple, family, and group levels. (To demonstrate distinguished performance, analyze these strategies and identify the significance of client self-advocacy.)
- Analyze the characteristics and concerns of refugees, both nationally and internationally, as they pertain to culturally competent counseling practices. For example, what are international political and social issues that a counselor should seek to understand about Muslim refugees? What national policies, such as Homeland Security, need to be considered?
- Evaluate the historical/current impact of immigration, poverty, and welfare from both a historical and current political perspective.
- Evaluate advocacy processes that address institutional racism and social barriers that impede access, equity, and success for clients from diverse populations.
- Address your role as the counselor in the reduction of biases, prejudices, and discrimination, whether intentional or unintentional.
- Social justice is a philosophy or theory that promotes equal access and opportunity for all people, by advocating at the micro (individual or family), meso (school or community), and macro (public policy) levels. Recommend a strategy that you could employ to promote social justice at each of those levels
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