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Strategies of austerity used in needs assessments for personal assistance - changing Swedish social policy for persons with disabilities
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1325-9965
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work. Lund University, Sweden.
Uppsala University, Sweden.
2019 (English)In: European Journal of Social Work, ISSN 1369-1457, E-ISSN 1468-2664Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

The austerity measures in social welfare implemented by street-level bureaucrats in their practice are changing the direction of social policy. This article examines the strategies used by public officials in implementing austerity measures in needs assessment for personal assistance in Sweden. The article is based on a document study with N = 100 records of needs assessment for personal assistance for persons with serious functional disabilities. Findings show that the public officials at the Swedish Social Insurance Agency either limit or extend their discretion as a strategy, as well as use weak warrants as strong warrants in recommending decisions. Other strategies involve the organisational logic, fragmentation of the content in the needs assessment and division of work among the public officials. Implementing the cost-cutting goals causes severe consequences for persons with disabilities who bear the brunt by being excluded from participation in society. The social policy values of fifty years, emphasising the right to equal participation in society, are traded for economic austerity goals.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis Group, 2019.
Keywords [en]
Austerity, personal assistance, social policy, street-level bureaucracy
National Category
Social Work
Research subject
Social Sciences, Social Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-88839DOI: 10.1080/13691457.2019.1639627ISI: 000479876900001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-88839DiVA, id: diva2:1346914
Available from: 2019-08-29 Created: 2019-08-29 Last updated: 2019-11-21

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Järkestig Berggren, UlrikaMelin Emilsson, Ulla

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf