Father-deserted and father-incapacitated public welfare families in Beaumont, Texas




Husband, Armon,1940-

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Primary Purpose: The primary purpose of this thesis is to compare father- deserted public welfare families with father-incapacitated public welfare families on thirty-one characteristics representing five broad categories, in order to determine what differences exist be- tween the two types of families. These characteristics were derived from a review of the literature and from the experiences of the author. The five categories include: 1. behavioral reactions of the family members arising from imbalanced family structure (one-parent families); 2. the father's self-image as it is affected by changes in his status and role necessitated by his illness or by his absence from the family; 3. various changes in the father's role functioning as perceived by the wife and children; 4. various employment characteristics of family members 5. various demographic characteristics of the family. Methodology: The case illustrations were selected from the records of those cases which have been personally handled by the author. Twenty cases were selected at random, but only eleven of them fit the criteria of father-desertion or father-incapacity. The sample data used in the statistical analysis was drawn from the records of five-hundred cases in which social service workers had been active between January 1, 1971 and January 1, 1972. Only those cases which involved parental deprivation based upon desertion and physical or mental incapacity were selected. From a total of 500 cases, father-deserted cases represented 20.8 per cent of the total caseload and father-incapacitated cases comprised 23.1 per cent of the caseload. For that reason, it was decided that 52 father-deserted cases would be compared with 58 father-incapacitated cases. Numbers from 1 to 500 were assigned to the total caseload and then a table of random numbers was utilized in drawing the sample from the total population. The data was then gathered directly from the case records and tabulated according to the characteristics to determine the significance of the difference between father-deserted and father-incapacitated public welfare families. Findings: 1. Significantly more mothers were employed in families with incapacitated fathers than in those families where the father had deserted. 2. Significantly more of the mothers from father-incapacitated families had maintained a reasonably stable work history than did those from families where the father had deserted. No other significant differences were found.



Paternal deprivation, Family social work, Public welfare--Texas--Beaumont