"We call it the badlands": How social-spatial geographies influence social service use

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"We call it the badlands": How social-spatial geographies influence social service use

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Title: "We call it the badlands": How social-spatial geographies influence social service use
Author: Kissane, Rebecca J.
Abstract: Using data from in-depth qualitative interviews with poor non-Hispanic white and Puerto Rican women living in a high-poverty neighborhood in Philadelphia, this article investigates how issues of geographic and social space condition participants' use of social resources provided locally by nongovernmental social service organizations (SSOs). The findings suggest that use of SSOs is highly contextual and situated in the local environment. In particular, proximity to agencies is found to be an important consideration in participants' decision to use SSOs, but equally important are subjective understandings of the immediate environs and the ethnoracial groups that live there. Results suggest that studies of geographic place and social welfare might consider the role of service users' sense of place and community in whether and how poor people make use of available organizational resources.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10385/838
Date: 2010-03

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