Article Details

Research Database: Article Details

Citation:  SHUTES, I. (2011). Welfare-to-Work and the Responsiveness of Employment Providers to the Needs of Refugees. Journal of Social Policy, 40 557-574.
Title:  Welfare-to-Work and the Responsiveness of Employment Providers to the Needs of Refugees
Authors:  SHUTES, I.
Year:  2011
Journal/Publication:  Journal of Social Policy
Full text:   
Peer-reviewed?  Yes
NIDILRR-funded?  Yes

Structured abstract:

Background:  Refugees have been identified as one of the more disadvantaged groups in the UK and other European countries to be prioritized for employment-related assistance.
Purpose:  Explores the effects of a job outcome-oriented performance system on the responsiveness of providers to the needs of unemployed refugees. These effects concern, first, the type of refugees to whom providers are responsive and, second, the type of employment assistance provided. It is argued that an emphasis on short-term job outcomes may conflict with supporting refugees who are 'harder to help', particularly those with English language needs. It may also conflict with supporting refugees to access employment related to their skills and interests by encouraging providers to focus on placing refugees in 'easy to access', low-skilled and low-paid jobs.
Study sample:  28 refugee service users, 15 members of the staff and 7 members of Jobcenter Plus
Data collection and analysis:  In-depth interviews
Findings:  The findings of this research point to fundamental tensions between a performance system oriented towards an 'employment-first welfare state' and the aim of providing refugees with a 'responsive service'.
Conclusions:  The effects may, therefore, serve to reproduce labour market inequalities experienced by refugees.

Disabilities served:  Environmental
Populations served:  Culturally diverse populations (e.g., African Americans, Native Americans, and non-English speaking populations)
Interventions:  Supported employment
Outcomes:  Employment acquisition