Special Population and the Advocacy Role
Advocacy is the fighting a cause for an individual or group of invididuals. Many people today need and use an advocate. For example, a social worker advocates for a client so that the client can receive state assistance benefits.
An advocate usually pleads or defends a position. The wealthy usually do not need an advocate as they have the means to solve the problem or issue themselves. Many programs from Catholic charities to the federal food stamp programs employee advocates.
In the State of Nevada there are local charities that advocate for the protection of children and fight for the rights of prisoners and victims of crimes. Citizens United for the Rehabilitation of Errant’s and the Recovery Group Cure, (Citizens United for the Rehabilitation of Errant’s) and the Recovery Group Inc. are such charities that advocate for prisoners in the State of Nevada Legislature in hopes to create laws equal and just. Carson City Nevada is the state capital of Nevada.
The state of Nevada has a population of more than two million. Nevada state prisons house over 12,000 inmates. The main purpose of CURE and the Recovery group is to ensure prisons are used for those individuals who belong in prison and to provide available resources to those in prison who want to turn their lives around. CURE currently has 20,000 members. “Current issues addressed are abolishment of the death penalty, adequate access to legal assistance, effective drug treatment and a constitutional amendment that changes the American justice system” (Nevada-Cure, 2011, p. 1). Members of the CURE group and the Recovery group are currently appearing in the state legislature to speak on such issues as WIC for pregnant women prisoners, an increase in educational programs in prisons, and requiring juvenile justice receiving state funds to file an annual report on the number of juvenile deaths and the circumstances relating to the death of the juvenile (Nevada-Cure, 2011).
Adrienne’s Perspective. Adrienne’s husband has been asked to be a part of a committee in the state’s legislature that addresses the issues and concerns of the CURE and Recovery group. She believes that many prisoners have the desire to change their lives; however, many programs are no longer available to the prisoners housed in the state of Nevada’s prisons. A meeting was set up with the Director of Prisons in January to discuss the issues currently addressed in the state legislature. Adrienne realizes the state has limited resources and funding available.
She would propose that these two organizations raise money through donations and federal grants. Individuals who do not have the time to advocate for the cause and believe in this cause can donate money to these organizations to fight for the cause. Adrienne and her husband along with other individuals advocate for this cause by being the voice inside the state legislature. Although Adrienne does believe many individuals will never change their lives, she does believe that those whom want to must have the opportunity and resources available to succeed.
Nevada-Cure.org. (2011) Nevada-Cure: Citizens United for the Rehabilitation of Errants. Retrieved January 15, 2012 from http://www.nevadacure.org/