Strategies for Work with Involuntary Clients: A Proposal for Linkage

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Many practitioners encounter involuntary clients who are legally mandated to find counselling, such as juvenile offenders on probation, or who, as in the case of an alcoholic threatened by family desertion, are pressured to "seek help". The end result is often considerable resistance and reluctance. Social work and other helping professions have tended to ignore or overlook this problem, and professional training assumes that most clients are self-selected and voluntary. Ronald Rooney's guide offers the first comprehensive and practical methodology for work with involuntary clients. Presenting socialization and contracting techniques similar to those used in task-centered social work, Rooney seeks to enable the practitioner to lead the involuntary client to a more voluntary and co-operative relationship. He also addresses the problems of the "involuntary practitioner" and gives advice on how to avoid blaming clients and "burning out".

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Columbia University Press
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