Social Welfare Essay

549 words - 2 pages

The paper defines the term 'social welfare' and the distinction between selective/residual systems and universal systems.What is Social Welfare?The Concise Oxford Dictionary states the term 'welfare' stems from the root meaning of the word 'having a good trip or journey'. This conveys the idea of travelling smoothly on the road of life. Welfare is regarded in terms of people's well being. Welfare is often associated with needs, but it goes beyond what people need; to achieve well being, people must have choices, and the scope to choose personal goals and ambitions. Definitions tend to be exclusive (restricted to one area) or inclusive (encompassing every social welfare activity). Social welfare overlaps with the activities of many institutions and therefore giving a complete description is very difficult. However, the broader use of the term social welfare is popularly understood as cash or in-kind payments to persons who need support because of physical or mental illness, poverty, age, disability, or other defined circumstances. Often the provider of such support is some form of governmental body, although in many cases, it is a voluntary organization, a church body, an occupational guild, or another nongovernmental group. (Compton, B.R. 1980)Welfare Systems: Selective/Residual versus UniversalThe objective of this section of the research paper is to demonstrate the distinction between the concepts of Universal systems and Selective systems. Should welfare be provided Universally or Selectively? Universalism provides services as a matter of right to all citizens. Selectivity involves establishing the criteria that gives access to welfare and a process for means testing applicants on a case basis. Selective benefits and services are reserved for people in need (Reddin, 2002).The...

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