Human Service Work: Agent of Change or Social Control
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Human Service Work: Agent of Change or Social Control


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Critical reflection statement: Human service work can be seen as an opportunity for social change or a means of maintaining social order.



Human services are an important part of social science and can be described as the study of human systems, service technologyand social innovations designed in order to improve the lives of people, their families, their communities such that they can live their lives in a better condition and with ease (Nandan, London and Bent-Goodley, 2014). The essay will reflect on the statement 'Human service work can be seen as an opportunity for social change or a means of maintaining social order'. In the essay, I will be supporting the claim that human service or social service work are intended, to provide an opportunity to bring a social change, however, in the real world, it is utilized as a disguise for gaining the social control rather than bringing social change or social order. My views and opinions on the human service are slightly pessimistic keeping the current world in mind. The claim made by me will be supported with effective evidences to make my opinion stronger and more valid.



Human services are aimed at bringing the social change by promoting the principles of human rights and social justice. They aim at bringing liberation and empowerment among the people. The human services are intended to promote the concept of universalism, which states that the humankind must show concern for each other without caring for national or state boundaries (Chenoweth and McAuliffe, 2015). However, there are some researchers and social enthusiasts who believe that the human service is nothing more than just a means of gathering the social control for some people and they prefer working for the society for their own personal benefits rather than doing the welfare for the society. I completely agree to this opinion keeping the present world scenario in mind. This vision of mine is supported by Healy (2000). As per my opinions, most of the people who are engaged in social services do not come with a pure heart and with the thought of improving the under-privileged sections of the society, rather they just think about themselves and the profits it can gain to their reputations and organizations. In my opinion, human service, in the present times, can be thought of a tool used by the people to gain social control. They do not actually aim at real improvement and empowerment of the under-privileged sections of the society. They do such activities with an intention of making profits rather than serving the people without any biasness (McAuliffe and Chenoweth, 2008). 

In my opinion, the core purpose of performing any activity must be the liberation and empowerment of people and we all must strive to make efforts in order to improve the lives of the needy people without any biasness; but the way people have been using the human service for their personal benefits has made me pessimistic about it. In today's world, the real game is played by perception management where the images and the reputation of the people can be created as well as destroyed by media in fractions of seconds by doing such human service activities. These activities are facilitated for them by media, which helps them by spreading the news of their so called 'good work' among the people and this news makes the profit of millions for these people or organizations. The news regarding the social welfare performed by the companies reaches all across the world, which strengthens its position in the market. There are many multi-billion dollar corporations in the world, which carry out many human service endeavors and they are nothing more than an activity for them, for furthering their business interests and increasing the brand value of their companies. This opinion of mine has also been supported by Knobloch-Westerwick in his study in 2014 (Knobloch-Westerwick, 2015). It clearly shows that the rich people or organizations use the concept of human service for establishing social order.

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