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August 2, 2013

Essay on the Role of Government in Policy Making

The role of government in policy making
It is necessary for every agency and organization to have in place certain laws and policies in order to enhance their functionality and productivity. In the absence of clear policies, the agency is always most likely to malfunction allowing the mismanagement to creep in. Therefore, Legislative tasks are an integral part of coming up with a policy. The agencies usually have certain tasks to carry out. This is to say, the agency must clearly raise an important issue have an ability to clearly state the problem.
This is a crucial aspect because it clearly indicates the objectives of the agency making it easier for the legislative authorities to go about the their proceducral duties. The judicial branch of the government has a key role to play in bringing the tasks and obectives of the agency under the ambit of law.  The case of Adult Protective Services based in New York is one fine example of government’s role in the policy making of the agency.
            The history of adult protective services still remains a mystery. In 1960, the study was conducted by Virgnia Lehmann for the National Council on the Aging and it called for the need of adult protective services. In the later year, the White House Conference on the Aging concluded that “social agencies, legal aid and bar associations, and the medical professions increase their cooperation and continue their study of ways to facilitate the provision of protective services to older people”(Kosberg and Rouse 1990)
            The Administration on Aging funded various demonstrations of the project in order to “determine the effect of certain service delivery systems on the group of elderly indentified as in need of protective services” (Marlatt, 1997) Until the start of 1981, all the states in America had realized the pressing need observing the fact that it was their responsibility to offer their protective services to the aging segment of the country. They also identified the need for the well-being of the aging population even in the absence of authorized legislation. As many as 83 percent of the states were of the view that the federal legislation should take place in order to support and help the aging overcome their psychological problems in the society. They were also in favor of the state-funded support for the aging people and prevent their abuse.
            Nevertheless, the congressional report in its finding state that the problem of the elder abuse was prevalent in “epidemic proportions” and this problem was most likely to become even more compounded. Given such pressing need for government’s action, proper legislations in this did not exist. As a result, many states began to adopt their own statues to provide adult protective services which were delivered by the state or local social service agancies. (Mixon, 1991)
However, the real motivating factor for the legislation came about with the passage of TitleXX amendment to the Social Security Act in 1974. This important act allowed the states to utilize their Social Services Block Grant (SSBG) funds to support and protect the adults as well as children. 
 Senator Claude Pepper of Florida, in 1985) suggested that the Congress act should come into place to instantly help the states in identifying, preventing, and helping elder-abuse victims. Given the enormous pressure and demand for the state-mandated child welfare services, the average state only seemed to allocate four percent of its funding to the protection services of adults and elders.
  Since the 1960s, the field of APS has developed and mature as many states revised and consolidated their APS laws by increasing their number of staff, training, public education, offender registries and emergency client services. Today, Adult Protective Services (APS) in New York is a complete state-mandated case management program that caters to the services and support for the physically or mentally impaired adults.
    The APS in New York provides offers its protection services to vulnerable adults who ages 18 or older. Irrespective of the location, there are a general rules APS strictly adheres to. The right to self-determination is given to clients and the use of the least restrictive alternative services is ensured in order to ward off the negative effects. The community based services are used instead of institutions. The tendency to ascribe blame is strongly discouraged.
   The agency has come a long way. It has drawn more on the pragmatic approach to deal with the woes of adults and elderly. It has also established a relationship of mutual trust with the clients.

Kosberg, J. I., and Rouse, J. (1990). “Adult Protective Services for Abused Aged in Texas: Program andResearch Implications.” Journal of Health and Human Resources Administration.

Marlatt, J. 1997. Adult Protective Services: A Status Report to the Administration on Aging. Washington, D.C.:Administration on Aging.

Mixson, P. M. 1991. “Self Neglect: A Practitioner’s Perspective.” Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect 3(1)

National Association of Adult Protective Services Administrators (naapsa). 1995. Survey of States’ Adult Protective Services Data Management Systems.





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