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Behavioral health services "Don't work for us": cultural incongruities in human service systems for Alaska Native communities

TitleBehavioral health services "Don't work for us": cultural incongruities in human service systems for Alaska Native communities
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsWexler, L
JournalAm J Community PsycholAm J Community Psychol
Volume47
Pagination157-69
Date PublishedMar
ISBN Number1573-2770 (Electronic)<br/>0091-0562 (Linking)
Accession Number21052820
KeywordsAlaska, Culture, Humans, Indians, North American/ psychology, Personal Autonomy, Professional Role/psychology, Residence Characteristics, Social Support, Social Welfare/ ethnology/psychology, Suicide/ethnology/prevention & control
AbstractCommunity psychology emphasizes the importance of context in the study of people's lives, and culture influences this in profound ways. To develop programs that effectively address diverse communities' problems, it is essential to recognize how Euro-American human service systems are understood and responded to by the many different people being served by them. The article describes how some broadly defined social services-conceptualized and implemented within a Euro-American framework-are ill suited for the everyday realities of Alaska Native villages. The cultural discontinuities are illustrated through ethnographic vignettes. The article concludes with suggestions for developing more culturally-responsive ways to conceive of and do programming for Alaska Native and possibly other Indigenous and minority communities.
Ethno Med: