Social Media Use in Child Welfare Practice

Keywords: Administration, supervision, child welfare policy, child welfare workforce, social media

Abstract

The scholarly child welfare literature offers little information about the use of social media by child welfare workers. We conducted a study of 171 child welfare workers across several states using an online survey. The resulting data offer insights from workers about current practices related to social media use in a child welfare work setting. Most respondents see social media as an acceptable tool for conducting child welfare assessments. Respondents describe strains and benefits of social media use. It is recommended that agencies provide guidance on ethical decision-making for using social media as a work-related tool. Agencies should also provide policy clearly defining social media use and misuse.

Author Biographies

Todd Edward Sage, University of North Dakota
Todd Sage is an Assistant Professor at the University of North Dakota.
Melanie Sage, University of North Dakota
Melanie Sage is an Assistant Professor and BSSW Program Director at the University of North Dakota.
Published
2016-04-25