Saturday, September 21, 2019

Benefit Payments to People who Misuse Alcohol

Benefit Payments to People who Misuse Alcohol Introduction Government policies and assistance for people who misuse alcohol raise controversial issues for legislators, policymakers and practitioners alike. Goodman (2007) highlights that government policy adopts both a ‘carrot and ‘stick approach. While individuals who misuse substances are encouraged to seek treatment, there is also the threat that for those who choose not to engage in programmes, they run the risk of being targeted if they continue in their addiction. Thus those whose alcohol addiction has caused them to become involved in criminal/illegal activities and who refuse to engage with alcohol interventions face agencies using enforcement and prosecution if they continue with their behaviours. Harm caused by alcohol is Scotlands biggest health challenge. Changing Scotlands Relationship with Alcohol: A Framework for Action was published to address Scotlands  £2.25 billion alcohol misuse problem. The governments focus is on reducing costs, recovery and making sure that people who need help are identified sooner and directed towards the right services (Scottish Government, 2009). In line with this, there have been significant changes in welfare policies for people who misuse alcohol. There is no clear of the number of people with drug and alcohol problems receiving social work interventions. Research is usually based on specialised practice teams, for example, teams working with children and families. Research suggests that approximately 25 per cent of children on child protection registers involve parental alcohol and or drug use. (Advisory Council on the Misuse of drugs (ACMD) 2003) while Hayden (2004) points out that higher estimates have been found among children and families services more broadly. Further research highlights that drug and alcohol misuse is prevalent with the many groups of people social workers often work with, for example, 44 per cent of people with mental ill health use substances in harmful or hazardous ways (Weaver et al, 2003) and among young people aged 14-15, research has shown that drinking alcohol is a regular occurrence (Institute of Alcohol Studies, 2009). Gender is also an important area in the field of substance misuse with rese arch showing that it is often thought for it to be worse for a woman to be drunk than a man (Sandmaier, 1992). It would appear that the experience of alcohol abuse may be different for a man and a woman. My interest in addictions developed whilst on placement with a voluntary organisation working with young people involved with offending and/or anti social behaviour. The placement demonstrated the increase in the extent to which drug and alcohol use influences the involvement of young people in offending (Rutter et al, 1998). An opportunity whilst on a mental health placement to work with a woman experiencing severe emotional, behavioural and financial difficulties who was alcohol dependent alerted me to the profound effects of addiction, the effect of proposed policy changes and to some of the difficulties experienced whilst working with this client group. By 2009, the harm caused by alcohol and the cost to UK society had become a topical debate. Current downturns in the UK economic climate coupled with large number of economically inactive individuals and an increase in worklessness created much cause for concern. It was decided to focus this study on alcohol dependent service users in light of the new legislation in the UK which aimed to support individuals with health difficulties in getting back to work. Aims of the Research This research aim is to explore the experiences and perceptions of front line workers regarding the implication of the new Employment and Support Allowance for people who misuse alcohol and the implications this has for social work practice and will broadly cover issues such as: What difference, if any, has the introduction of the new Employment and Support Allowance made to work carried out with alcohol dependent service users? Should the implementation of this Allowance be subject to specific conditions? What is the experiences of working with alcohol dependent service users? Outline of the dissertation A review of the relevant literature is presented in chapter two in order to set the study in its legal, political and practice context. The approach and methods used to collect the data will be explored in chapter three. Chapter four presents and discusses the findings and chapter five presents the final analysis, draws some conclusions and makes some suggestions for future practice and research. All names including the name of the organisation in which the research is based have been changed in accordance with confidentiality agreements. Chapter 1 Literature Review INTRODUCTION This literature review is divided into four sections. Section one addresses, understandings of alcohol abuse. Political responses to alcohol abuse is the focus of section two. Section three explores the reasons for change and section four discusses practice issues, challenges and dilemmas. The terms alcohol addiction, alcoholism, and alcohol dependence have the same meaning. No one term is more serious than the other. Different terms have evolved over the years to overcome the negative stigma of addiction. Some people are not addicted to drugs or alcohol, but abuse them. The American Psychiatric Association (DSM-IV) uses specific criteria over a 12 month period to differentiate between dependence and abuse. If an individual fulfils the criteria for substance dependency then a diagnosis of substance abuse does not apply (Petersen McBride, 2002). For the purpose of this research, the term alcohol abuse will be used to describe individuals who abuse alcohol as well as those who are categorised as alcohol dependent. SECTION 1 Understandings of alcohol abuse The use of alcohol is long standing within Western culture. As the research has a focus on alcohol abuse, consideration must be given to the reasons why such a growth in excessive drinking emerged. The social changes stemming from the industrial revolution are therefore significant. Previous to these, ideas centred on the view that human beings were thought to be rational and exercised free will in relation to self enjoyment. Individuals were seen to exercise choice; â€Å"Drunkenness was a choice, albeit a sinful one, which some individuals made.† (Levine, 1978, p146) The movement of people from rural to urban areas because of the need for organised labour together with the growth in population meant that there were significantly high concentrations of people. Social problems emerged on an exceptional scale with excessive alcohol consumption and related safety at work issues causing great public concern. Problems relating to alcohol abuse thus became more socially significant. Many theories exist in relation to understanding the causes of alcohol abuse. Early explanations to problems with substance misuse focused on moral issues and the idea that alcohol consumption and ungodliness were linked. Individuals who had problems with drink were viewed as being ‘weak willed or ‘sinful with ‘treatment focusing on punishment or religious conversion (Petersen McBride, 2002, p34*). During the nineteenth century, scientific explanations began to emerge in relation to understanding the spread of excessive drinking behaviour in society; this was the first time that the idea of alcoholism as a disease was considered (Collins, 1990). Applying such a medical analysis allowed for a new awareness, understanding and even sympathetic attitude towards alcohol consumption and its related problems. Pressure on the State to ensure that alcoholism was recognised as a disease which required specific medical attention was now evident. Petersen McBride (2002) highlight that substance use is different from dependence or addiction. When a person tries a substance once or for the first few times, it is seen as ‘experimental. Substance misuse can also be ‘recreational meaning a person may misuse a substance, for example, alcohol, occasionally or on a social basis. The individual is seen as ‘dependent if they have developed a dependent pattern on a substance and misuse it continually. Critics argue that the disease approach focuses the attention only on the dependent problem drinker, the drinker who is experiencing severe physical and social consequences. Problems can occur at any of these stages with different interventions available, for example, the ‘disease model supports the argument for total abstinence and is broadly supported by Alcoholics Anonymous. However this model will not work for everyone. Alternatively, models which focus on harm reduction through controlled drinking, for example , the ‘wheel of change model, are also accepted within drug and alcohol services (Goodman, 2007). Difficulties arise when categorising individuals and in relation to the language used; for example what constitutes recreational use? What is the difference between dependence and addiction? The language used within alcohol literature varies greatly. It is possible for someone to be in all three stages at once; for example someone who is dependent on alcohol may recreationally misuse cannabis. There appears to be a move away from socially constructed terms such as addiction, with research highlighting that terms such as ‘addict or ‘alcoholic carry with them a negative connation and are powerful labels. Goodman (2007) points out that it is better to call a person drug dependent, where the dependency is the compulsion to keep taking drugs. There is no one clear definition of alcohol abuse as a disease. Kessel Walton (1989) highlight that ‘alcoholism is a difficult subject to study and alcoholism is a term with multiple and sometimes conflicting definitions. Defining what constitutes an ‘alcoholic and what constitutes a ‘non-alcoholic is difficult. Collins (1990) highlights that; â€Å"It is now accepted that problem drinking exists on a continuum, with normal or non-problem drinking at one end and severe dependence at the other† (Collins, 1990, p49*) Developments in research into dependency have led to risk factors such as stress, social environment, emotional health, genetic predisposition, age, and gender being identified. For example, studies have shown that children born from alcohol dependent parents who are adopted into families with no dependency issues are at greater risk of becoming alcohol dependent than the rest of the population. This would suggest that there is some genetic predisposition to alcohol dependence. Children born and raised by alcohol dependent parents have an even greater rate of becoming alcohol dependent, although here learnt behaviour may also be a factor (ref). Psychological theories such as Social Learning Theory relate behaviour to processes that take place within the individuals mind rather than the physical structure of the brain. Behaviour is believed to be conditioned by the expectations of the individual in carrying out a particular action, for example, immediate short term effects of alcohol can create feelings of enjoyment or eliminate unpleasant withdrawals. In the long term the advantages of stopping may be less rewarding than the short term gratification of prolonged misuse. Certain studies question the idea of rewarded behaviour and that addiction is a consequence. Chein (1964) found that when normal subjects were given narcotics, although they found the experience pleasurable, they did not become compulsive drug users, suggesting that drugs are not inherently rewarding as Social Learning Theory purports. Furthermore, it was found that a percentage of people who developed dependencies became dependent anyway despite having found the initial drug experience unpleasant. Regardless of these concerns, the conditioning model is well supported and highlights once again that addictive behavior is complex and difficult to place into a single model. Social Learning theory is helpful in explaining the differences in social attitudes to alcohol abuse in women. Sandmaier (1992) surveyed attitudes towards alcohol abuse among four hundred women and men of varying socioeconomic classes, ethnicity and age in the United States and found that the majority thought it to be worse for a woman to be drunk than a man. Labelling someone as an ‘alcoholic can be stigmatising and affect an individuals self-efficacy and self-esteem (Goodman, 2007). Attitudes towards drinking are not homogeneous, however the stigma attached to female alcohol abuse significantly shapes the experience, rendering it different from the experience of a man. Alcohol abuse for women threatens societys formed image about women being good mothers or good wives. Problem drinking often goes undetected amongst women due to a fear of condemnation by society. Women experiencing alcohol problems can be viewed as ‘repulsive and disgraceful. Such cultural judgments can therefore adversely affect women seeking help (Sandmaier, 1992, p8). Theories of personality are located somewhere between the biological and psychological with suggestions that certain types of people will experience problems with alcohol dependency. The term ‘addictive personality is sometimes used but critics have questioned this, concluding that there is no one type of personality more likely to abuse substances or develop substance dependency (Nathan, 1988). What appears to be more accurate is that specific personality traits have been linked to substance misuse, for example, sensation seeking has been identified as a personality trait that may be common in those who choose to abuse substances (Zuckerman, 1979). Two main schools of thought appear to be evident in relation to understanding alcohol abuse; the biological standpoint and a more psychosocial belief structure. It is important to understand that theories provide useful contributions to understanding substance dependence but that no integrated theory exists. â€Å"As there is no one substance use experience and no one encompassing theory, there can be no one specific response.† (Petersen McBride, 2002, p36) What looks apparent is that society, for many years, has had an ambivalent attitude towards alcohol consumption. Confusion of attitudes inevitably result from shifts among policy makers in line with changes in dominant viewpoints. Predominant medical understandings of alcohol abuse which consider ‘alcoholism as a disease justify state intervention such as help through health care to address the damage caused to the body. Whatever the reasons behind substance abuse and dependency, research has shown there to be a huge cost, both financially and to human life. SECTION 2 Political responses to alcohol abuse In order to explore the States approach to tackling alcohol abuse, ideas around welfare are significant. As a result of the development of ‘alcoholism being recognised as a disease which requires treatment, distinguishable welfare needs have been identified. In reviewing ideas around welfare, the ‘welfare state in the UK differed from previous schemes of poverty relief due to its relatively universal coverage. The Social Insurance and Allied Services Report (1942) (the Beveridge Report) provided the proposals which allowed for the creation of the welfare state. The idea was to provide universal benefits to all and to address issues such as unemployment, poverty and disease. Critics argued that the creation of a ‘welfare state under Beveridges original proposal was excessively expensive, could not be financially maintained after the post war boom period and would create an unwillingness to work. Since 1979, reforms have been evident across all government sectors with more of an emphasis being placed on the responsibility of the individual. The Social Security Act (1986) brought about major structural changes to the social security system. In relation to benefits, means testing and compulsory conditions to specific benefits were established. For example, invalidity benefit for those who were unable to work due to ill health, which included alcohol dependent service users, was changed to incapacity benefit requiring all but the severely disabled, below pension age, to become job seekers. This brought about a new culture towards welfare which the ‘New Labour government elected in the 1997 election were quick to embrace. Alcock et al (2008) highlight that in analysing current political attitudes, an account of social policy now is an account of the shape it has been given by the New Labour Government in power. The Government believes that paid work has many rewards, for example, it increases independence, health and well being. The government wants to provide the opportunity for as many people as possible to access employment and share such rewards. Employment policies occupy a central but controversial place in debates about the future of welfare. Welfare-to work programmes for those who are able to work have been introduced in an attempt to move away from the ‘old passive benefit system (Alcock et al, 2008, p342). Developments have seen groups that had previously not been expected to find paid work, for example, people with disabilities, now being include d in this approach. The Welfare Reform Act (2009) which applies to England, Wales and Scotland sets out the framework necessary for the future abolition of Income Support, and the movement of claimants of that benefit to Jobseekers Allowance with differing degrees of conditionality, or to Employment and Support Allowance. The Act provides for those who have problems with alcohol to be directed to make, and comply with, a rehabilitation plan. Concern about the negative consequences of alcohol abuse has reached a significantly high point on the current political agenda. At a national level the problems associated with alcohol abuse is recognised as a priority by the Government. Local governments have developed their own frameworks for addressing alcohol related harm, for example, ‘Changing Scotlands Relationship with Alcohol: A Framework for Action (Scottish Government, 2009). The role alcohol plays in the UKs economy can be both positive and negative. There are wide-reaching economic benefits derived from alcohol and alcohol consumption such as the provision of employment and tax revenues. The total value of the UK drinks market exceeds  £30 billion. The justification for alcohol excise duties ensures that the consumer directly contributes to any costs that alcohol consumption imposes on society as alcoholic drink is subject to both excise and VAT. Revenue for the Exchequer is substantial and has been increasing for the last 30 years. The alcoholic drinks industry reports to generate approximately one million jobs across the whole supply chain. The British Beer and Pub Association reports that there are over one million people employed in hotels, restaurants, pubs and clubs (Institute of Alcohol Studies, 2008). It is evident that alcohol plays an important role in the success of certain parts of industry in UK society. In relation to the harm caused by alcohol in Scotland, there were over 40,000 hospital admissions in 2007-8 due to alcohol related illness and injury and deaths related to alcohol have more than doubled in the last 15 years. Rates of liver cirrhosis in Scotland are growing faster than anywhere else in the world and life expectancy in some parts of Scotland has fallen significantly short of life expectancy elsewhere. Research suggests that alcohol plays a significant part in these inequalities (Scottish Government, 2009). Research has shown that drinking alcohol in Scotland is a common occurrence for the majority of young people between the ages of 12 and 15 and that the problem with underage drinking is rising (Institute of Alcohol Studies, 2009). If people are drinking at a younger age they are at greater risk of developing dependencies, experiencing health difficulties or becoming economically inactive, all of which will have a detrimental effect on the economy. To address the problem of underage drinking initiatives and proposals are ongoing. In 2008, certain councils piloted local bans on under-21s using off-licenses. Results indicated that the level of assaults, vandalism and general complaints about young people fell significantly. These pilots were viewed successfully but critics argue that governments need to focus on wider issues such as poverty in order to change Scotlands attitude to alcohol (The Times, 2008). The regulation of the sale of alcohol has a long history in UK society. Whilst the minimum age of eighteen years old to purchase alcohol has remained the same, the variety of outlets licensed to sell alcohol and the opening times of these has changed dramatically. Tensions exist for government in relation to the deregulation of alcohol along with the wider availability of it and concerns about Scotlands problematic relationship with alcohol. Current government policy appears to be tailored towards the health benefits of reducing alcohol consumption and dependency and addressing the detrimental effects on health services and other related social problems. This appears to be the Governments focus regardless of the opportunity to raise substantial revenue through the taxation of alcohol. Such changes in political attitudes towards alcohol abuse have brought about firmer regulations governing the sale and possession of alcohol, for example, The Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 represents th e biggest changes to the Licensing System in Scotland in over thirty years. The Act increases responsibility for those who are involved in the sale of alcohol and places restrictions on drinks promotions, for example, Happy Hours and two-for-one promotions can no longer be used by licensed premises. Recent reforms relate to the Scottish Governments introduction of the Alcohol Bill. This Bill proposes a number of measures to tackle alcohol-related harm including a 40 pence per unit minimum price (Scottish Government, 2009). However critics argue that pricing measures will not tackle the underlying reasons why people drink harmfully. Changes in regulations have came about to address issues such as public disorder and underage drinking as alcohol abuse is significantly linked to these. Law and order and health are just some of many Government departments which are affected by alcohol-related harm. The total cost to UK society is vast. The National Social Marketing Centre in 2007 estimated a cost  £55.1 billion. This estimate was composed of  £21 billion cost to individuals and families/households,  £2.8 billion cost to public health and care services,  £2.1 billion cost to the Criminal Justice System, Education and Social Services,  £7.3 billion cost to employers (includes days lost to affects of alcohol abuse) and  £21.9 billion in human cost (reduced quality of life adjusted years) (House of Commons, 2009). The increasing cost of alcohol abuse and related concerns are therefore key considerations for government. SECTION 3 Need for change? During this time of economic recession, the government is paying significant attention to welfare reform. Government publications such as Raising Expectations and Increasing Support: Reforming Welfare for the Future (2008) detail plans for the future as part of New Labours vision for a personalised welfare state. There appears to be a number of reasons why the government wants to increase employment levels, helping to explain why the governments focus has been on welfare reforms. The rate of worklessness, that is, those detached from the labour market, for example, alcohol-dependent and economically inactive individuals is significant. The Office for National Statistics (2009) reported that the number of working-age people in workless households in April-June 2009 reached 4.8 million. This was a rise of 500,000 from the previous year. The number of workless households with children reached 1.9 million, highlighting a rise of 170,000. The percentage of households in which no adults worked also increased by 1.1 percentage points from the previous year. These s reflect the highest rates since 1999 and the highest year-on-year increase since 1997. Increasing the number of economically active in society is crucial for government as they fund the economically dependent. Worklessness is linked to poor health and poverty and both poverty and worklessness are intergenerational; a working household is not only less likely to be in poverty, but also children living in the household are less likely to be in poverty as adults (Centre for Longitudinal Studies, 2007). Some argue that benefit payments accompanied with weak or no work expectations trap the very people they are supposed to help. Worklessness and the increasing cost of alcohol abuse are therefore key considerations for current government and help to explain reasons for change. Recognition that the number of people over state pension age has exceeded the number of children has raised government concerns. The dilemma of an ageing population has caused alarm for both public and private sectors, for example, concerns relate to pensions, the size of the workforce and the capacities of the health and social services. Alcock et al (2008) point out: â€Å"For governments, high rates of employment boost tax revenues, reduce spending on social security benefits and make it easier to fund other social policies and meet the anticipated costs of an aging population† (Alcock et al., 2008, p.311). The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) points out that the new Employment and Support Allowance focuses on enabling disabled people and individuals with a health condition to engage in appropriate work, if they are able. The government has indicated that over 2.6 million people depend on incapacity benefits in the UK and that nine out of ten new claimants say that they want to return to work. The government cites this as one of the reasons why change has occurred (DWP, 2008). The idea that alcohol dependent service users are required to find suitable work raises questions about the availability, types of jobs and the level of pay required to help families out of poverty. Alcoholism is seen to have both direct and indirect effects on earnings and employment. Productivity and reliability in the labour market can be affected by the physical and mental health problems linked with alcohol dependency. That is, sickness, hangover or late arrivals are work characteristics that lead to reduced reliability and productivity. Indirect effects relate to a possible lack of education if a dependency has prevented an individual from completing or advancing at school. This possible lack of education could lead to lower wages and a limited selection of jobs. Difficulties in maintaining employment may also be experienced by individuals who are alcohol dependent, as reduced reliability leads to job loss and decreased employability. Consequently the lack of work experience ca n lead to lower wages and earnings (MacPherson, 1998). However, having someone in work does not necessarily mean the household will not be poor; thus, debates continue in relation to the role that employment policies play in reducing poverty. The new Employment and Support Allowance places obligations upon disabled people, including alcohol dependent individuals judged to be capable of work. Creating ideas that centre on having norms which is to be in full time paid work is perhaps stigmatising and disadvantaging to those people whose capabilities mean they have to work less or at a slower rate. Critics would argue that the new system will make it difficult for individuals to refuse a job if they consider it beneath their dignity, thus raising questions about the value of autonomy in our society. Increasing the degree of conditionality in the benefit system could perhaps add strength to the argument that too often ‘poor people can be treated as though they have no right to pursue a career of their choice, how to allocate time between family responsibilities or work outside their home or how to meet their family responsibilities. Some would argue that ‘poor people do not receive the same minimum respect as other citizens (Young, 2002). SECTION 4 Practice issues, challenges and dilemmas Some people with disabilities need extra resources, equipment or personal care to function independently and/or benefit from welfare-to-work government policies. In relation to people who misuse alcohol and claim Employment and Support Allowance on the grounds of incapacity, this section will examine some of the current practice issues and the main challenges and dilemmas that can arise. Many people with substance misuse issues appear to lack serious motivation to change behaviour that could be described as self-destructive. In relation to what works to motivate people to change, research has shown that scare tactics and confronting individuals are likely to lead to a defensive reaction, whilst labeling an individual as an ‘alcoholic or ‘addict is unhelpful and does not support the person to change (Goodman, 2007). Setting goals is important, but for any assistance to be successful, such goals must be a shared aspiration between the individual and worker. How successful the new system will be in helping people who misuse alcohol return to work will perhaps be more related to how well it works with individuals in assessing what they are capable of and how effective it is in assessing what help and support service users need to manage their condition, rather than the increasing conditionality and penalties. The Welfare Reform Act (2009) gives Job Centre advisers the power to assess individuals for alcohol problems and to force those with a dependency to undergo treatment. Individuals who refuse will lose benefits. Critics argue that job Centre advisers do not have the training for this role, and that specialised drug and alcohol professionals would need to carry out such assessments. There is also concern whether drug and alcohol services have the resources to deal with the increased number of perhaps, involuntary clients. The charity Alcohol Concern estimates that only one in 18 individuals who have an alcohol dependency can to access treatment (Hunter, 2009). The focus on what works best with alcohol and drug problems is of great importance. Challenges arise from frustrations felt by workers seeing people with alcohol or drug problems repeatedly in and out of the ‘revolving door of services. Attempting to change a long term pattern of drinking is extremely difficult, with research showing that several or more attempts can be required. Petersen and McBride (2002) highlighted that: â€Å"The inability to stop using drugs and especially the inability to avoid returning to use are at the heart of what we mean by addiction. In this respect, the problem of relapse is one of the defining features of the addictive disorders† (Petersen and McBride, 2002, p189) If relapse is a defining feature of the addictive disorder, how do welfare changes which make more condition and create more complex systems incorporate this known feature of the addiction cycle? Dilemmas arise in relation to the new system and the lack of sensitivity to the particular conditions such as alcohol abuse with its relapse and periodic ‘down periods. Critics point out that an individuals alcohol dependency might be an indication that he or she is struggling to cope and that removing benefits could have detrimental effects. Removing or reducing alcohol dependent service users benefits could create more strain in their lives and make their alcohol issues worse. This, in turn, would be less likely to help individuals in getting back to work, and therefore the new system would have achieved the opposite of its intended purpose. How individuals would Benefit Payments to People who Misuse Alcohol Benefit Payments to People who Misuse Alcohol Introduction Government policies and assistance for people who misuse alcohol raise controversial issues for legislators, policymakers and practitioners alike. Goodman (2007) highlights that government policy adopts both a ‘carrot and ‘stick approach. While individuals who misuse substances are encouraged to seek treatment, there is also the threat that for those who choose not to engage in programmes, they run the risk of being targeted if they continue in their addiction. Thus those whose alcohol addiction has caused them to become involved in criminal/illegal activities and who refuse to engage with alcohol interventions face agencies using enforcement and prosecution if they continue with their behaviours. Harm caused by alcohol is Scotlands biggest health challenge. Changing Scotlands Relationship with Alcohol: A Framework for Action was published to address Scotlands  £2.25 billion alcohol misuse problem. The governments focus is on reducing costs, recovery and making sure that people who need help are identified sooner and directed towards the right services (Scottish Government, 2009). In line with this, there have been significant changes in welfare policies for people who misuse alcohol. There is no clear of the number of people with drug and alcohol problems receiving social work interventions. Research is usually based on specialised practice teams, for example, teams working with children and families. Research suggests that approximately 25 per cent of children on child protection registers involve parental alcohol and or drug use. (Advisory Council on the Misuse of drugs (ACMD) 2003) while Hayden (2004) points out that higher estimates have been found among children and families services more broadly. Further research highlights that drug and alcohol misuse is prevalent with the many groups of people social workers often work with, for example, 44 per cent of people with mental ill health use substances in harmful or hazardous ways (Weaver et al, 2003) and among young people aged 14-15, research has shown that drinking alcohol is a regular occurrence (Institute of Alcohol Studies, 2009). Gender is also an important area in the field of substance misuse with rese arch showing that it is often thought for it to be worse for a woman to be drunk than a man (Sandmaier, 1992). It would appear that the experience of alcohol abuse may be different for a man and a woman. My interest in addictions developed whilst on placement with a voluntary organisation working with young people involved with offending and/or anti social behaviour. The placement demonstrated the increase in the extent to which drug and alcohol use influences the involvement of young people in offending (Rutter et al, 1998). An opportunity whilst on a mental health placement to work with a woman experiencing severe emotional, behavioural and financial difficulties who was alcohol dependent alerted me to the profound effects of addiction, the effect of proposed policy changes and to some of the difficulties experienced whilst working with this client group. By 2009, the harm caused by alcohol and the cost to UK society had become a topical debate. Current downturns in the UK economic climate coupled with large number of economically inactive individuals and an increase in worklessness created much cause for concern. It was decided to focus this study on alcohol dependent service users in light of the new legislation in the UK which aimed to support individuals with health difficulties in getting back to work. Aims of the Research This research aim is to explore the experiences and perceptions of front line workers regarding the implication of the new Employment and Support Allowance for people who misuse alcohol and the implications this has for social work practice and will broadly cover issues such as: What difference, if any, has the introduction of the new Employment and Support Allowance made to work carried out with alcohol dependent service users? Should the implementation of this Allowance be subject to specific conditions? What is the experiences of working with alcohol dependent service users? Outline of the dissertation A review of the relevant literature is presented in chapter two in order to set the study in its legal, political and practice context. The approach and methods used to collect the data will be explored in chapter three. Chapter four presents and discusses the findings and chapter five presents the final analysis, draws some conclusions and makes some suggestions for future practice and research. All names including the name of the organisation in which the research is based have been changed in accordance with confidentiality agreements. Chapter 1 Literature Review INTRODUCTION This literature review is divided into four sections. Section one addresses, understandings of alcohol abuse. Political responses to alcohol abuse is the focus of section two. Section three explores the reasons for change and section four discusses practice issues, challenges and dilemmas. The terms alcohol addiction, alcoholism, and alcohol dependence have the same meaning. No one term is more serious than the other. Different terms have evolved over the years to overcome the negative stigma of addiction. Some people are not addicted to drugs or alcohol, but abuse them. The American Psychiatric Association (DSM-IV) uses specific criteria over a 12 month period to differentiate between dependence and abuse. If an individual fulfils the criteria for substance dependency then a diagnosis of substance abuse does not apply (Petersen McBride, 2002). For the purpose of this research, the term alcohol abuse will be used to describe individuals who abuse alcohol as well as those who are categorised as alcohol dependent. SECTION 1 Understandings of alcohol abuse The use of alcohol is long standing within Western culture. As the research has a focus on alcohol abuse, consideration must be given to the reasons why such a growth in excessive drinking emerged. The social changes stemming from the industrial revolution are therefore significant. Previous to these, ideas centred on the view that human beings were thought to be rational and exercised free will in relation to self enjoyment. Individuals were seen to exercise choice; â€Å"Drunkenness was a choice, albeit a sinful one, which some individuals made.† (Levine, 1978, p146) The movement of people from rural to urban areas because of the need for organised labour together with the growth in population meant that there were significantly high concentrations of people. Social problems emerged on an exceptional scale with excessive alcohol consumption and related safety at work issues causing great public concern. Problems relating to alcohol abuse thus became more socially significant. Many theories exist in relation to understanding the causes of alcohol abuse. Early explanations to problems with substance misuse focused on moral issues and the idea that alcohol consumption and ungodliness were linked. Individuals who had problems with drink were viewed as being ‘weak willed or ‘sinful with ‘treatment focusing on punishment or religious conversion (Petersen McBride, 2002, p34*). During the nineteenth century, scientific explanations began to emerge in relation to understanding the spread of excessive drinking behaviour in society; this was the first time that the idea of alcoholism as a disease was considered (Collins, 1990). Applying such a medical analysis allowed for a new awareness, understanding and even sympathetic attitude towards alcohol consumption and its related problems. Pressure on the State to ensure that alcoholism was recognised as a disease which required specific medical attention was now evident. Petersen McBride (2002) highlight that substance use is different from dependence or addiction. When a person tries a substance once or for the first few times, it is seen as ‘experimental. Substance misuse can also be ‘recreational meaning a person may misuse a substance, for example, alcohol, occasionally or on a social basis. The individual is seen as ‘dependent if they have developed a dependent pattern on a substance and misuse it continually. Critics argue that the disease approach focuses the attention only on the dependent problem drinker, the drinker who is experiencing severe physical and social consequences. Problems can occur at any of these stages with different interventions available, for example, the ‘disease model supports the argument for total abstinence and is broadly supported by Alcoholics Anonymous. However this model will not work for everyone. Alternatively, models which focus on harm reduction through controlled drinking, for example , the ‘wheel of change model, are also accepted within drug and alcohol services (Goodman, 2007). Difficulties arise when categorising individuals and in relation to the language used; for example what constitutes recreational use? What is the difference between dependence and addiction? The language used within alcohol literature varies greatly. It is possible for someone to be in all three stages at once; for example someone who is dependent on alcohol may recreationally misuse cannabis. There appears to be a move away from socially constructed terms such as addiction, with research highlighting that terms such as ‘addict or ‘alcoholic carry with them a negative connation and are powerful labels. Goodman (2007) points out that it is better to call a person drug dependent, where the dependency is the compulsion to keep taking drugs. There is no one clear definition of alcohol abuse as a disease. Kessel Walton (1989) highlight that ‘alcoholism is a difficult subject to study and alcoholism is a term with multiple and sometimes conflicting definitions. Defining what constitutes an ‘alcoholic and what constitutes a ‘non-alcoholic is difficult. Collins (1990) highlights that; â€Å"It is now accepted that problem drinking exists on a continuum, with normal or non-problem drinking at one end and severe dependence at the other† (Collins, 1990, p49*) Developments in research into dependency have led to risk factors such as stress, social environment, emotional health, genetic predisposition, age, and gender being identified. For example, studies have shown that children born from alcohol dependent parents who are adopted into families with no dependency issues are at greater risk of becoming alcohol dependent than the rest of the population. This would suggest that there is some genetic predisposition to alcohol dependence. Children born and raised by alcohol dependent parents have an even greater rate of becoming alcohol dependent, although here learnt behaviour may also be a factor (ref). Psychological theories such as Social Learning Theory relate behaviour to processes that take place within the individuals mind rather than the physical structure of the brain. Behaviour is believed to be conditioned by the expectations of the individual in carrying out a particular action, for example, immediate short term effects of alcohol can create feelings of enjoyment or eliminate unpleasant withdrawals. In the long term the advantages of stopping may be less rewarding than the short term gratification of prolonged misuse. Certain studies question the idea of rewarded behaviour and that addiction is a consequence. Chein (1964) found that when normal subjects were given narcotics, although they found the experience pleasurable, they did not become compulsive drug users, suggesting that drugs are not inherently rewarding as Social Learning Theory purports. Furthermore, it was found that a percentage of people who developed dependencies became dependent anyway despite having found the initial drug experience unpleasant. Regardless of these concerns, the conditioning model is well supported and highlights once again that addictive behavior is complex and difficult to place into a single model. Social Learning theory is helpful in explaining the differences in social attitudes to alcohol abuse in women. Sandmaier (1992) surveyed attitudes towards alcohol abuse among four hundred women and men of varying socioeconomic classes, ethnicity and age in the United States and found that the majority thought it to be worse for a woman to be drunk than a man. Labelling someone as an ‘alcoholic can be stigmatising and affect an individuals self-efficacy and self-esteem (Goodman, 2007). Attitudes towards drinking are not homogeneous, however the stigma attached to female alcohol abuse significantly shapes the experience, rendering it different from the experience of a man. Alcohol abuse for women threatens societys formed image about women being good mothers or good wives. Problem drinking often goes undetected amongst women due to a fear of condemnation by society. Women experiencing alcohol problems can be viewed as ‘repulsive and disgraceful. Such cultural judgments can therefore adversely affect women seeking help (Sandmaier, 1992, p8). Theories of personality are located somewhere between the biological and psychological with suggestions that certain types of people will experience problems with alcohol dependency. The term ‘addictive personality is sometimes used but critics have questioned this, concluding that there is no one type of personality more likely to abuse substances or develop substance dependency (Nathan, 1988). What appears to be more accurate is that specific personality traits have been linked to substance misuse, for example, sensation seeking has been identified as a personality trait that may be common in those who choose to abuse substances (Zuckerman, 1979). Two main schools of thought appear to be evident in relation to understanding alcohol abuse; the biological standpoint and a more psychosocial belief structure. It is important to understand that theories provide useful contributions to understanding substance dependence but that no integrated theory exists. â€Å"As there is no one substance use experience and no one encompassing theory, there can be no one specific response.† (Petersen McBride, 2002, p36) What looks apparent is that society, for many years, has had an ambivalent attitude towards alcohol consumption. Confusion of attitudes inevitably result from shifts among policy makers in line with changes in dominant viewpoints. Predominant medical understandings of alcohol abuse which consider ‘alcoholism as a disease justify state intervention such as help through health care to address the damage caused to the body. Whatever the reasons behind substance abuse and dependency, research has shown there to be a huge cost, both financially and to human life. SECTION 2 Political responses to alcohol abuse In order to explore the States approach to tackling alcohol abuse, ideas around welfare are significant. As a result of the development of ‘alcoholism being recognised as a disease which requires treatment, distinguishable welfare needs have been identified. In reviewing ideas around welfare, the ‘welfare state in the UK differed from previous schemes of poverty relief due to its relatively universal coverage. The Social Insurance and Allied Services Report (1942) (the Beveridge Report) provided the proposals which allowed for the creation of the welfare state. The idea was to provide universal benefits to all and to address issues such as unemployment, poverty and disease. Critics argued that the creation of a ‘welfare state under Beveridges original proposal was excessively expensive, could not be financially maintained after the post war boom period and would create an unwillingness to work. Since 1979, reforms have been evident across all government sectors with more of an emphasis being placed on the responsibility of the individual. The Social Security Act (1986) brought about major structural changes to the social security system. In relation to benefits, means testing and compulsory conditions to specific benefits were established. For example, invalidity benefit for those who were unable to work due to ill health, which included alcohol dependent service users, was changed to incapacity benefit requiring all but the severely disabled, below pension age, to become job seekers. This brought about a new culture towards welfare which the ‘New Labour government elected in the 1997 election were quick to embrace. Alcock et al (2008) highlight that in analysing current political attitudes, an account of social policy now is an account of the shape it has been given by the New Labour Government in power. The Government believes that paid work has many rewards, for example, it increases independence, health and well being. The government wants to provide the opportunity for as many people as possible to access employment and share such rewards. Employment policies occupy a central but controversial place in debates about the future of welfare. Welfare-to work programmes for those who are able to work have been introduced in an attempt to move away from the ‘old passive benefit system (Alcock et al, 2008, p342). Developments have seen groups that had previously not been expected to find paid work, for example, people with disabilities, now being include d in this approach. The Welfare Reform Act (2009) which applies to England, Wales and Scotland sets out the framework necessary for the future abolition of Income Support, and the movement of claimants of that benefit to Jobseekers Allowance with differing degrees of conditionality, or to Employment and Support Allowance. The Act provides for those who have problems with alcohol to be directed to make, and comply with, a rehabilitation plan. Concern about the negative consequences of alcohol abuse has reached a significantly high point on the current political agenda. At a national level the problems associated with alcohol abuse is recognised as a priority by the Government. Local governments have developed their own frameworks for addressing alcohol related harm, for example, ‘Changing Scotlands Relationship with Alcohol: A Framework for Action (Scottish Government, 2009). The role alcohol plays in the UKs economy can be both positive and negative. There are wide-reaching economic benefits derived from alcohol and alcohol consumption such as the provision of employment and tax revenues. The total value of the UK drinks market exceeds  £30 billion. The justification for alcohol excise duties ensures that the consumer directly contributes to any costs that alcohol consumption imposes on society as alcoholic drink is subject to both excise and VAT. Revenue for the Exchequer is substantial and has been increasing for the last 30 years. The alcoholic drinks industry reports to generate approximately one million jobs across the whole supply chain. The British Beer and Pub Association reports that there are over one million people employed in hotels, restaurants, pubs and clubs (Institute of Alcohol Studies, 2008). It is evident that alcohol plays an important role in the success of certain parts of industry in UK society. In relation to the harm caused by alcohol in Scotland, there were over 40,000 hospital admissions in 2007-8 due to alcohol related illness and injury and deaths related to alcohol have more than doubled in the last 15 years. Rates of liver cirrhosis in Scotland are growing faster than anywhere else in the world and life expectancy in some parts of Scotland has fallen significantly short of life expectancy elsewhere. Research suggests that alcohol plays a significant part in these inequalities (Scottish Government, 2009). Research has shown that drinking alcohol in Scotland is a common occurrence for the majority of young people between the ages of 12 and 15 and that the problem with underage drinking is rising (Institute of Alcohol Studies, 2009). If people are drinking at a younger age they are at greater risk of developing dependencies, experiencing health difficulties or becoming economically inactive, all of which will have a detrimental effect on the economy. To address the problem of underage drinking initiatives and proposals are ongoing. In 2008, certain councils piloted local bans on under-21s using off-licenses. Results indicated that the level of assaults, vandalism and general complaints about young people fell significantly. These pilots were viewed successfully but critics argue that governments need to focus on wider issues such as poverty in order to change Scotlands attitude to alcohol (The Times, 2008). The regulation of the sale of alcohol has a long history in UK society. Whilst the minimum age of eighteen years old to purchase alcohol has remained the same, the variety of outlets licensed to sell alcohol and the opening times of these has changed dramatically. Tensions exist for government in relation to the deregulation of alcohol along with the wider availability of it and concerns about Scotlands problematic relationship with alcohol. Current government policy appears to be tailored towards the health benefits of reducing alcohol consumption and dependency and addressing the detrimental effects on health services and other related social problems. This appears to be the Governments focus regardless of the opportunity to raise substantial revenue through the taxation of alcohol. Such changes in political attitudes towards alcohol abuse have brought about firmer regulations governing the sale and possession of alcohol, for example, The Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 represents th e biggest changes to the Licensing System in Scotland in over thirty years. The Act increases responsibility for those who are involved in the sale of alcohol and places restrictions on drinks promotions, for example, Happy Hours and two-for-one promotions can no longer be used by licensed premises. Recent reforms relate to the Scottish Governments introduction of the Alcohol Bill. This Bill proposes a number of measures to tackle alcohol-related harm including a 40 pence per unit minimum price (Scottish Government, 2009). However critics argue that pricing measures will not tackle the underlying reasons why people drink harmfully. Changes in regulations have came about to address issues such as public disorder and underage drinking as alcohol abuse is significantly linked to these. Law and order and health are just some of many Government departments which are affected by alcohol-related harm. The total cost to UK society is vast. The National Social Marketing Centre in 2007 estimated a cost  £55.1 billion. This estimate was composed of  £21 billion cost to individuals and families/households,  £2.8 billion cost to public health and care services,  £2.1 billion cost to the Criminal Justice System, Education and Social Services,  £7.3 billion cost to employers (includes days lost to affects of alcohol abuse) and  £21.9 billion in human cost (reduced quality of life adjusted years) (House of Commons, 2009). The increasing cost of alcohol abuse and related concerns are therefore key considerations for government. SECTION 3 Need for change? During this time of economic recession, the government is paying significant attention to welfare reform. Government publications such as Raising Expectations and Increasing Support: Reforming Welfare for the Future (2008) detail plans for the future as part of New Labours vision for a personalised welfare state. There appears to be a number of reasons why the government wants to increase employment levels, helping to explain why the governments focus has been on welfare reforms. The rate of worklessness, that is, those detached from the labour market, for example, alcohol-dependent and economically inactive individuals is significant. The Office for National Statistics (2009) reported that the number of working-age people in workless households in April-June 2009 reached 4.8 million. This was a rise of 500,000 from the previous year. The number of workless households with children reached 1.9 million, highlighting a rise of 170,000. The percentage of households in which no adults worked also increased by 1.1 percentage points from the previous year. These s reflect the highest rates since 1999 and the highest year-on-year increase since 1997. Increasing the number of economically active in society is crucial for government as they fund the economically dependent. Worklessness is linked to poor health and poverty and both poverty and worklessness are intergenerational; a working household is not only less likely to be in poverty, but also children living in the household are less likely to be in poverty as adults (Centre for Longitudinal Studies, 2007). Some argue that benefit payments accompanied with weak or no work expectations trap the very people they are supposed to help. Worklessness and the increasing cost of alcohol abuse are therefore key considerations for current government and help to explain reasons for change. Recognition that the number of people over state pension age has exceeded the number of children has raised government concerns. The dilemma of an ageing population has caused alarm for both public and private sectors, for example, concerns relate to pensions, the size of the workforce and the capacities of the health and social services. Alcock et al (2008) point out: â€Å"For governments, high rates of employment boost tax revenues, reduce spending on social security benefits and make it easier to fund other social policies and meet the anticipated costs of an aging population† (Alcock et al., 2008, p.311). The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) points out that the new Employment and Support Allowance focuses on enabling disabled people and individuals with a health condition to engage in appropriate work, if they are able. The government has indicated that over 2.6 million people depend on incapacity benefits in the UK and that nine out of ten new claimants say that they want to return to work. The government cites this as one of the reasons why change has occurred (DWP, 2008). The idea that alcohol dependent service users are required to find suitable work raises questions about the availability, types of jobs and the level of pay required to help families out of poverty. Alcoholism is seen to have both direct and indirect effects on earnings and employment. Productivity and reliability in the labour market can be affected by the physical and mental health problems linked with alcohol dependency. That is, sickness, hangover or late arrivals are work characteristics that lead to reduced reliability and productivity. Indirect effects relate to a possible lack of education if a dependency has prevented an individual from completing or advancing at school. This possible lack of education could lead to lower wages and a limited selection of jobs. Difficulties in maintaining employment may also be experienced by individuals who are alcohol dependent, as reduced reliability leads to job loss and decreased employability. Consequently the lack of work experience ca n lead to lower wages and earnings (MacPherson, 1998). However, having someone in work does not necessarily mean the household will not be poor; thus, debates continue in relation to the role that employment policies play in reducing poverty. The new Employment and Support Allowance places obligations upon disabled people, including alcohol dependent individuals judged to be capable of work. Creating ideas that centre on having norms which is to be in full time paid work is perhaps stigmatising and disadvantaging to those people whose capabilities mean they have to work less or at a slower rate. Critics would argue that the new system will make it difficult for individuals to refuse a job if they consider it beneath their dignity, thus raising questions about the value of autonomy in our society. Increasing the degree of conditionality in the benefit system could perhaps add strength to the argument that too often ‘poor people can be treated as though they have no right to pursue a career of their choice, how to allocate time between family responsibilities or work outside their home or how to meet their family responsibilities. Some would argue that ‘poor people do not receive the same minimum respect as other citizens (Young, 2002). SECTION 4 Practice issues, challenges and dilemmas Some people with disabilities need extra resources, equipment or personal care to function independently and/or benefit from welfare-to-work government policies. In relation to people who misuse alcohol and claim Employment and Support Allowance on the grounds of incapacity, this section will examine some of the current practice issues and the main challenges and dilemmas that can arise. Many people with substance misuse issues appear to lack serious motivation to change behaviour that could be described as self-destructive. In relation to what works to motivate people to change, research has shown that scare tactics and confronting individuals are likely to lead to a defensive reaction, whilst labeling an individual as an ‘alcoholic or ‘addict is unhelpful and does not support the person to change (Goodman, 2007). Setting goals is important, but for any assistance to be successful, such goals must be a shared aspiration between the individual and worker. How successful the new system will be in helping people who misuse alcohol return to work will perhaps be more related to how well it works with individuals in assessing what they are capable of and how effective it is in assessing what help and support service users need to manage their condition, rather than the increasing conditionality and penalties. The Welfare Reform Act (2009) gives Job Centre advisers the power to assess individuals for alcohol problems and to force those with a dependency to undergo treatment. Individuals who refuse will lose benefits. Critics argue that job Centre advisers do not have the training for this role, and that specialised drug and alcohol professionals would need to carry out such assessments. There is also concern whether drug and alcohol services have the resources to deal with the increased number of perhaps, involuntary clients. The charity Alcohol Concern estimates that only one in 18 individuals who have an alcohol dependency can to access treatment (Hunter, 2009). The focus on what works best with alcohol and drug problems is of great importance. Challenges arise from frustrations felt by workers seeing people with alcohol or drug problems repeatedly in and out of the ‘revolving door of services. Attempting to change a long term pattern of drinking is extremely difficult, with research showing that several or more attempts can be required. Petersen and McBride (2002) highlighted that: â€Å"The inability to stop using drugs and especially the inability to avoid returning to use are at the heart of what we mean by addiction. In this respect, the problem of relapse is one of the defining features of the addictive disorders† (Petersen and McBride, 2002, p189) If relapse is a defining feature of the addictive disorder, how do welfare changes which make more condition and create more complex systems incorporate this known feature of the addiction cycle? Dilemmas arise in relation to the new system and the lack of sensitivity to the particular conditions such as alcohol abuse with its relapse and periodic ‘down periods. Critics point out that an individuals alcohol dependency might be an indication that he or she is struggling to cope and that removing benefits could have detrimental effects. Removing or reducing alcohol dependent service users benefits could create more strain in their lives and make their alcohol issues worse. This, in turn, would be less likely to help individuals in getting back to work, and therefore the new system would have achieved the opposite of its intended purpose. How individuals would

Friday, September 20, 2019

Teenagers and Their Tanning Problem Essay -- Health, Skin Cancer

Teenagers and their Tanning Problem 30 million people are expected to go tanning this year (â€Å"Tanning poses risks† 1). That means that 30 million people are putting themselves up for the risk of skin cancer, premature aging, and they are putting themselves in a possible unsanitary environment. The tanning industry wants a person to think that the only thing that tanning can do for them is to make them bronze and beautiful. When in reality, it has the opposite effect. People need to know what they are doing to themselves before they put themselves in a tanning bed. Many people choose not to acknowledge all of the harmful effects that tanning can have on your body. They think that it won’t happen to them. But, I will give facts and statistics to show that everyone is at risk of the possible outcomes that come from using a tanning bed. There are 1 million new cases of skin cancer found each year (â€Å"No Teen tanning† 1). We need to make that number go down. If we make a law that makes a person have to be over 18 to go tanning, many lives would be saved. Tanning salons are not keeping up to their regulations. They are not only lying to us, but are also misleading us in multiple ways. A recent survey done where a reporter from The Consumer Union asked employees at tanning salons from 12 different cities multiple questions to see the results. When they did this they found that 75% of employees said their customers could tan everyday, 6% said they would allow them to tan without eyewear, 20% said minors could come without any adult and 35% said that tanning doesn’t cause skin cancer (â€Å"Tanning poses risks† 1). These statistics are way too high. Not only are the people at the tanning bed not trustworthy, but so are their actual beds. Emp... ...abit at all. Being 18 is a big step in a teenager’s life. They automatically become more responsible and more mature. They should be able to be mature enough to make the right decision by choosing to not go tanning. They would also no longer have the peer pressure while being in high school to look a certain way. This would be a great law that could save lives, but still protect that American right of freedom to choose what a person does with oneself. Lots of states are taking action and creating new regulations and laws for tanners. Let us be the one who really goes all out. Let us be the one to start something new. People would look to us and think about how much we care about our people and their lives. If we do create this law, then many lives would be saved. Future cancer patients would no longer exist. Our Indiana State citizens will thank us in the future.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Finding the Truth in the Situation Essay examples -- Literary Analysis

William Shakespeare has yet again created a world of good and evil. In his work Othello, the ideals and principles of this world are just like any other with a twist brought upon by two characters, Othello and Iago. These two characters along with many others employ the central idea of what good and evil entails. However, neither Othello nor Iago possess just one of these traits. Othello is not just the pure perfect guy he is perceived to be and Iago is not just the evil vindictive character he is believed to be but rather both of these men are far more interesting than that. They both have the necessary qualities that get them through life and potentially threaten their lives. Through their actions and interactions with the other characters that they really are is shown. Othello seems to have a really rough time finding the truth in people. The reasoning behind this is simply the way he acts around people. Although Othello is a cultural and racial outsider in Venice, his skill as a soldier and leader is nevertheless valuable and necessary. He is after all a man in high power and is respected for that simple fact. Essentially, the first impact that is made upon the reader of Othello is not one of high quality. He was called many names of which had to do mostly with his racial background some of these names include â€Å"the Moor† (I.i.57), â€Å"an old black ram† (I.i.88), and â€Å"a Barbary horse† (I.i.113). The two characters that begin the cruel introduction of Othello are two trusted comrades, one being Iago. Right from the start, Iago already begins the demise of Othello. Now since Othello made this decision to trust and simply see the good in everyone rather than the truth in everyone his life got turned upside down and st arted to take ... ...re. He is like a chameleon, loves the attention he receives when entering a room, yet he can blend in with the crowd when need be. No one could ever see the real Iago because he never let anyone, even his wife Emilia, know the real him. Both Othello and Iago have many different qualities but the ones that are the same are what proves the point of them not just simply being two sides of one coin. Othello had many weaknesses and Iago plays off every single one of them, the â€Å"hellish villain†(V, ii, 354) that Iago is killed every living ounce that was left in Othello, and once the truth came to the surface, Othello only wished he could awaken and â€Å"arise, black vengeance, from the hollow hell† (III, iii, 507). The fact that Iago had â€Å"ensnared [Othello’s] soul and body† (V, ii, 354) made Othello believe that â€Å"honesty’s a fool† (III, iii, 436) and his life was over.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

The American Dream: The Essence of America Essay examples -- Essays on

From the birth of America, to America today, the driving force and the heart of America has always been the â€Å"American Dream.† The â€Å"American Dream† is a goal for many of people who live in the realms of the Americanized world. I believe that the â€Å"American Dream† is controlling my own destiny, becoming successful, and living free. Examples of this dream are things like television, automobiles, supermarkets, malls, Internet, planes, trains, etc. The â€Å"American Dream† is success, freedom, and being able to control your own destiny.   Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Becoming successful has been the dreams of many people of the past and present and I think that it is one the most important things that a person must accomplish. Anyone and everyone can develop into a successful person, permitting that the person believes i...

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Playground Payback

In the far hills of North Carolina, there was a school called Blue Creek Elementary. It was half a century old, and you could definitely tell. The yellow stained walls of the classrooms had marks from play dough and crayon. The chalk board was cloudy with dust from a thousand words before. The smell of each room was basically the same, chalk clappers and weak tea, and the colour of autumn leaves was present throughout the year. It was January 2002. The climbing frame in the playground was rust incrusted, and the paint was crumbling off, but still was in use as if it was new everyday. No one child was dissatisfied with their school life, they could see nothing wrong with the way they were ruled, the rota they followed or the order they had come to be in for so many years. They were treated equally as each other, by the council they had elected. Every new school year in September there would be an election. Any volunteers would under go a number of campaigns to become the new king of the playground. For the last three years no one had been a match for King Rob. In the last year no one was even prepared to challenge Rob Jenkins, but it wasn't because they were scared, no, quite the opposite. There was nothing wrong with the way he ruled them. He took care of them; he was their agony aunt to their problems, a King Solomon in his own day. He brought them new games, fought for new rights and changed the word recess itself. But all this was about to change, something, or someone was just around the corner. PJ, Felicity, Pikes, Jennie and Russ were playing kickball, a game Jennie ruled without a doubt. It was known to everyone that they were an untouched gang. They had been for years, what seemed like friends forever. PJ was like the leader, although he claimed he didn't know it. His round pot belly and backwards baseball cap were historic trademarks in the playground's history, almost hereditary, as his father was also seen wearing them in his time at Blue Creek. Felicity was thought of as â€Å"the brains†, and she liked it like this. She was studying at a 10th grade level, four years ahead of the rest of her class, but resisted being moved up away from her friends. She had long brown and unruly hair, which she only ever wore up when in P.E, the only school subject she detested. Unlike Felicity, P.E was the only subject Jennie didn't hate. She was an unlimited fan of wrestling, and never once considered herself a girl, apart from when in the presence of her parents. It was the first week back from Christmas break, and there was already a new kid. His name was Prince Dartmoor. He had black, short and curly hair. His face was coloured, and he wore a red white and blue Globetrotters uniform. He had white sneakers, and was bouncing an orange basketball signed by Michael Jordan. It didn't take long for a disorderly crowd to form around him. They were watching something. The gang stared in amazement. Prince was standing in the middle of the playground, at least twenty five yards away from the basketball hoop. â€Å"Ya don't think he's gonna try for do ya?† questioned Russ. He looked at PJ with a sense of honour. He felt that PJ was all knowing all seeing; he would have the answers to anything and everything. â€Å"Nah! Look at him! His stance is all wrong and his arms are flying everywhere, there's no way he'd even come close to-â€Å", PJ halted. Just at that moment, Prince threw the ball with all his might. It climbed the air like a mountaineer, and flew down gracefully, landing through the hoop. For what seemed like a lifetime, no one made a sound, and then out of the blue, the crowd burst into a thunderous applause. The gang was in awe. Even PJ was stunned. Prince looked at PJ with familiarity. PJ didn't know how, but Prince knew who he was, and it definitely seemed that he was planning something. Meanwhile the crowd was dying down, though kept up their pleasure with Prince. He was stepping up onto an overturned box, and someone handed him a loudspeaker. â€Å"Ch-â€Å", he began, but was automatically put off with the alien effect sound that was coming out of the loudspeaker. He switched a button, and restarted, â€Å"Children of Blue Creek playground,† his voice was loud and unyielding. No one made a sound. Everyone's eyes were on him. â€Å"I have down a lot of research before transferring here. I had to find a school where my services are needed, and I have found no other group kept so much in the dark as this one; I am here to put a stop to the treacherous behaviour your ruler has been withstanding. He has made you his servants, while calling you equal. He has held you back from rights you so truly deserve and said you have everything. Listen up, I have someone here to tell you something† Prince finished with a look of confidence. A small, shaking figure was brought through the crowd. His face was irregularly pale, and his black hair was on end. â€Å"My name is Kyle. I go to Belle Fork Elementary, King Rob's cousin used to go there. He ruled the playground there too, up until 6th grade in his fourth year as king, he turned on everyone. No one had seen it coming, but we found out he'd been doing it slowly, making us think it was for our own good.† He halted. â€Å"What he do?† shouted someone from the crowd. â€Å"He changed the rules; slowly as I said, but changed em. First we couldn't have cookies anymore, he'd confiscate em, then we couldn't have snacks altogether, and then†¦ he took away the kick balls. Even if they was our own from home! He'd taken all our games, until there was nothing left. Recess was just kids sittin' around the place. No one was even allowed to speak! And if someone broke a rule, they'd get taken away, no one ever saw Timmy Reynolds again!† Kyle looked in despair at the crowd. They just stared at him, too scared to speak. â€Å"I think everyone here will agree with me that something has to be done before King Rob follows in his cousin's footsteps. My research has told me that his father and uncle did the same thing when they were in their fourth year, and their father before them! I propose we revolt, stopping this cycle dead in its tracks! Now who's with me?† he shouted more confident than ever. And then what followed was a colossal roar of approval, and that was that. The reign of King Rob had definitely come to an end. The crowd followed Prince, half stirred up in the confusion, half hungry for revenge. They came to the Jungle Jim Palace. Prince shouted up to King Rob, â€Å"Rob, your people are in total agreement. You are being exiled! I am a civil kid, so I'll give you 'til next recess to get outta our playground!† the crowd screamed with excitement. PJ, Felicity, Jennie, Pikes and Russ looked at each other for reassurance. They knew, even if they were the only ones who did, that th is was not a good idea. The gang walked away from the mob and came to their territorial kick ball field. PJ turned to the others, â€Å"We gotta something.† â€Å"But what can we do, you saw em out there! There's no way we're ever gonna change their minds!† laughed Jennie. She was stubborn, more so than PJ, so he couldn't argue with her usually. â€Å"It's like our pretty rainbow of life is being painted with black ink, and we're choking helplessly† Pikes recited. His love for poetry never stood down, even in the face of destruction. â€Å"What are we gonna do when it all goes wrong?† Russ panted. He took a deep breath from his asthma inhaler and looked at it panicking. â€Å"I could loose my inhaler! I could end up in hospital! The sky could fall down and we'd all be crushed and go under ground forever and ever and ever and ever an-â€Å", Russ was hit over the head by a scowling PJ. â€Å"Sorry!† Russ twitched. â€Å"I may have a suggestion to our current predicament.† Felicity joisted her words together and flew them out perfectly as ever. â€Å"Now as Jennie said, there is no possible way to overthrow the minds of the children. They are under an exciting grasp, and though deep down they may know it is wrong, they can't consciously tear away from it. But there are definitely some exceptions to this hypnotic phenomenon, us being one, and of course another being, as much as I hate to say it†¦ the Jaimes.† She gave a pause to invite any protesters. â€Å"Oh no! Don't even think I'll ask for their help again! Never! Not in a million years!† Jennie was convinced that the Jaimes were total hypocrites. All they did was wear make up and talk about boys. They were totally against everything she believed in, especially her tom boy criteria. â€Å"I'm sorry Jennie, but it's the only way. They have an almost never ending access to a boys mind, and if we've got to get rid of this Prince, we need all the help we can get.† Felicity stood with authority. Jennie finally, yet dejectedly agreed, as did the rest of the group. The Jaimes Clubhouse was in a large underground shelter they had paid the digger twins to build two years before. Though the outside was plain and misleading, the inside was an interior designer's heaven. There was a lilac carpet, and a purple fur rug. The walls were bright pink, and drapes were icing blue. There was a dark blue sofa, and a mahogany coffee table. The Jaimes were sitting on the sofa when the gang walked in. â€Å"What are you doing here?† said Jaime 1. She had long blonde hair and green surly eyes. She wore a pale blue suit and black soft heels. Although the Jaimes considered themselves equal, they had to distinct each other somehow, and so they were numbered in age order. PJ looked at them with slight pity and disgust. â€Å"We, and don't laugh when I say this†¦need your help† the Jaimes ignored his request and laughed in his face. â€Å"Why would you need our help?† questioned Jaime 3. Number 3 had dark curly hair and was coloured with brown eyes, but had a nicer smile than number 1. She was wearing a yellow suit, only differing number 1's in colour. PJ noticed that they always wore the same thing but in different colours years ago, so he wasn't taken back. Felicity took the role of explaining their problem to the girls, while the rest of the group hoped for a good response. The Jaimes sat and listened carefully, even number 1 didn't speak until Felicity had finished. The Jaimes had been inside while Prince's debut had taken place, so everything was news to them. At the end, their faces looked shocked. Number 1 spoke first. â€Å"So what do you want us to about it? I mean, we are obviously concerned, but how are we supposed to help?† it seemed that they were genuinely trying to help, for the first time ever in PJ's knowledge. â€Å"That's the genius of it! Everyone knows that you guys are at least two years ahead of your age; you act like you're already in high school. Well it seems to me that this Prince guy is at the same level as you, so it wouldn't be a misconception if we thought it was possible†¦for you to, how can I put it, distract him!† Felicity explained with appropriate verbal skill. â€Å"You want us to flirt!† Number 4 caught on. She was wearing the green variety of the suit. â€Å"That's one way of putting it, yes!† Felicity looked at her, expecting disapproval. â€Å"Now you're talking! A way we can put all our uses together! Flirting and lying!† Number two was obviously happy with the proposal. â€Å"Great1 and while you create a few weeks distraction, we can look into Prince, not literally of course! We'll investigate his past, and come up with some proof to convict him of†¦Ã¢â‚¬  Felicity thought, â€Å"Something we don't know yet!† The weeks went on, and as far as the gang could tell, Prince was enjoying the act of the Jaimes. Prince had come to be the leader of the playground. He resented anyone proclaiming him to be a king. He said they were all equal, even him. He had produced a short list of laws, which he thought were important if they were to sustain equality, they were: never to downsize another playground associate, always to put others first and never to be selfish. The children of the playground had started up a little chant, and when he heard this, he decided to make it into a regular native song. Whenever there was a meeting, which there frequently was, it would begin with verses of this song, which Prince called Blue Creekers of America. It was sung to the tune of If Your Happy and Your Know it, and went like this†¦ From the Ball field to the swing set we are free, All the way across the playground we are free, When they try to tell us different, We just turn around from infants, If you're a blue creeker than shout out we are free. Don't ever think you'll ever be alone, Think of the playground as your very happy home, If you ever need a hand, Then Prince will understand, If you're a blue creeker than shout out we are free. If you're a blue creeker than shout out we are free! The gang wasn't having much luck looking for evidence (except they knew that kids toys and candy were going missing, even someone's portable television), so PJ, Russ and Pikes decided to take it into their own hands one Saturday night. They snuck out and met at City Hall. Pikes' dad worked there, so it was easy to get the keys. They were all wearing black, navy blue or any other dark colours, though none of the burglar clothing, it would be extremely suspicious if they were seen. They crept into the hall, and saw a door labelled â€Å"Staff only†. This was it. Pikes pulled out a set of keys, and tried three before finding the right one. They opened the door, looking out for any night watchers. They slowly and cautiously walked in the room. There were rows of filing cabinets with letter in alphabetical order above each one. They found row D. â€Å"Dakota, Daniels, Darter, Dartmoor! Got him! Prince Dartmoor. He used to go to Belle Fork. But there's no record of him before 1999† whispered PJ. He couldn't help but feel familiar with this school. â€Å"Belle Fork? That's where King Rob's- Rob's cousin went† noted Russ. He was confused, as were the others. If they went to the same school, why would he need Kyle to tell the story, unless, he was just a pawn in Prince's game play, and that would mean the story wasn't true. They decided to investigate further. They found J for Jenkins, and soon found Rob's dad's and Mum's files. They looked under siblings, and this is where it got interesting. They didn't have any. Rob didn't have a cousin, and the gang had found the evidence they needed. Suddenly, the boys heard a noise from outside the room. It was a guard. They looked hard for a way out, and came to a window. They looked at Pikes. His round chubby body wouldn't fit through that window if a shark was chasing him. â€Å"Go! Take the files! It's the only way!† Pikes forced them. â€Å"But what about you?† Cowered Russ, already hoisting himself up to the window. â€Å"I'll face the consequences alone! Everything comes at a price and this is ours. I'll be grounded for sure, but that's something I'll allow for the sake of the playground, now go!† Pikes courageously whispered. PJ nodded, and within thirty seconds of hearing the guard, PJ and Russ were outside. As they ran with the files tucked in the backpacks, they heard someone shouting, and knew Pikes had been found. On Monday at school was buzzing. The girls had been told to meet PJ, Pikes and Russ in the Jaimes clubhouse, with the Jaimes present naturally. The boys came in a few minutes late, but with plenty of time to spare before the first lesson began. They should them the files, and explained thoroughly what had on the Saturday night. The girls were immediately excited, and were mentally prepared for the removal of Prince. â€Å"Pikes, what did your parents say?† asked Jennie. â€Å"Oh I'm just grounded until I'm fifty. My dad says I could have got him fired, but I think he's just trying to scare me.† Pikes didn't sound his usual self. He seemed down, but was still anxious to get this thing going. The gang and the Jaimes racked their brains to form a plan but finally agreed that one was solid just as the bell went. The playground emptied, and the gang left separately from the Jaimes so as not to cause suspicion. The rest of the morning was spent making preparations. Jaimes 1 and 2 ‘distracted' Prince and the rest snuck around, and secretly spoke to kids they thought were suitable for certain†¦jobs. Pikes and Russ had a very important thing to do. It was morning recess. They went to a wooden gate and heard screams of terror and playful games. They walked through the gate, and entered Kindergarten Territory. They trekked passed the mass of wresting toddlers and painted tribal faces until they got to the Kindergarten King. His name was Lyle, but was called Tootoodyna in a mark of respect. Tootoo was short and fat, with red long hair. He, as the others, had clannish markings on his face, a beaded necklace and wore a grass skirt. â€Å"Morning your highness.† Greeted Pikes. He was well-known to Tootoo, and had been named his big kid friend. â€Å"Tootoo happy to see you big kid friend. Do you want favour?† Tootoo's language was primal, but understandable. â€Å"Yes. The big kids need your help.† Pikes began to explain the plan to the Kindergarten King, and Russ helped fill in things to. After a while, King Tootoo agreed to the plan with ease, and settled terms with the boys. The rest of the morning ran smoothly. The gang and the Jaimes acted normal, not doing much work with the exception of Felicity obviously. They were apprehensive, yet wanted it all the same. They wanted it over. They wanted things to go back to normal. Most of them were wondering what PJ had done. He had told them he had to do something at morning recess, and snuck out of school to do so, but when they asked what it was, he just smiled and said, â€Å"You'll find out.† Lunch came. The cafeteria was almost silent. Most because they could sense something was up, but some because they knew what was up. The gang left the cafeteria ten minutes after entering, and waited for the rest to follow. The gang knew that Prince would be sitting on the Jungle Jim Palace. He had forbidden anyone to touch it, including himself. He said it was a historic figure, one to remind them of the reign of King Rob. Two bodyguards were surveying the entrance. â€Å"We got it!† said Jaime 4 with pleasure. PJ nodded and smiled. The gang hid behind a bush, and watched the Jaimes bring the guards into the clubhouse. It was clear. The playground was starting to fill up by now. It was the perfect time, and there was no going back. PJ lead them to the palace. A few kids saw him and gathered round. What they'd been sensing, this was it. As the gang climbed up, more people gathered round, though no one was saying anything yet. When the last was in the palace, Jaime 3 came out. She spoke to the crowd in a quiet and calm yet commanding voice, â€Å"you have to make sure that Prince doesn't know you're here. Don't make a sound. You'll find out something you deserve to know, just as long as he doesn't think you're here, understand?† â€Å"Why should we listen to you? Prince has done nothing wrong† said one weasel like child. â€Å"Then it won't matter if you hear what he has been doing, if there's nothing wrong with it, like you said. Now go round to the back. We rigged a cup and string phone so you'll hear everything, but when you get there someone will be waiting. When you see them don't make a sound, they're important in all this, and you'll probably change your mind about them soon enough.† Jaime 3 instructed. They did as they were told, and as she said there was someone waiting. King Rob. A few of the crowd opened their mouths, but then remembered Jaime's words and didn't make a peep. They listened through the phone, and recognized the gangs and Prince's voices. â€Å"What are you doing here?† Prince asked angrily. â€Å"Could ask you the same question† replied PJ. His confidence astounded even him and especially Prince. â€Å"We know what you're up to. We know you made up that story and we know what's in this box right here† PJ stepped forward pointing to a large oak toy box, and opened it. There were all of the missing toys and candy. Prince stood there, stunned. He'd been found out, but wasn't going down without a fight. â€Å"Oh yeah, well who cares, you found me out, but as far as those idiots know, I'll tell em you took their stuff, and they'll believe me too, gullible and stupid. They follow my every move and guess what? There's nothing you can do about it!† Prince grew an evil smile. â€Å"Wanna bet?† King Rob entered the room and snatched the evil smile right of Prince's face. â€Å"You know as well as I do that I don't have a cousin, and yet you paid off some kid to lie about it. How much did you pay him? Ten, twenty bucks?† â€Å"Fifteen, but that's not the point. The point is, no one's gonna believe an outlaw and a gang of self righteous twits?† Prince felt safe again. There was no way they'd stop him now, was there? PJ picked up the box, took it to the balcony, and tipped out the contents, but holding the television. Prince was curious. He walked out onto the balcony, and saw the children of the playground listening to every word he'd been saying. â€Å"Fine. So you know. I applaud you all. Good job. But guess what Rob, you may have got out of this one, but I'll be waiting. Every move you make, every step you take I'll be ready to-â€Å"Prince was stopped dead in his tracks. The bodyguards walked up to him and dragged him towards the principle's office. â€Å"But why'd he do it PJ?† shouted someone from the crowd. â€Å"Rob, o you remember the name Jack Hollows?† PJ asked. â€Å"Yeah, he was my best friend up until 3rd grade, when he-â€Å", Rob paused, â€Å"he swore he'd get me back after I pulled down his jeans in the school play.† Rob had had a break through. He knew what was going on. â€Å"Pikes, Russ and I snuck into City Hall on Saturday night. We found out that Prince had lied about that story. Rob hasn't even got a cousin. Then we found out about Prince. There was no record of him before 1999. Then this morning I went home and searched his picture on City Hall records internet. They only give you their name of course, but that's all I needed. It came up with two records. Prince Dartmoor 1999 to present, and Jack Hollows 1991 to 1999. He changed his name right after the play incident, so he could get his revenge without a trace.† PJ gave the crowd a few seconds to mull over the information they had just been given, and then spoke once more, â€Å"So I ask you, are you regretful? Are you sorry? But most of all, do you want King Rob back?† the crowd gave no pause, just a dramatic, deafening â€Å"YES!† Prince (or Jack) was expelled from Blue Creek Elementary for stealing. He and his family moved to Alabama. King Rob was restored to his throne. The Jaimes were given luxuries to go in their clubhouse. The gang were labelled playground heroes, and Pikes was given an honorary stationary kit because of his bravery in City Hall. As for PJ, he was given the job of Royal Assistant. He monitored Jack's movement in Alabama, and checked out any new kids. Blue Creek Elementary was back to where it started, but with more trust, guidance and hope for the future- High School.

Monday, September 16, 2019

English as a Foreign Language Essay

The resources chosen for this exercise are a song and a series of related pictures. The pictures are images that contain science fiction-like elements which would be of interest to this elementary group within the demographic of 20 to 45 years. The lesson created for the students using these materials appeals to the development of their aural receptive skill, as the song lyrics contain many shorter phrases and sentences and phrases that students of that level are likely to be able to understand. It therefore combines audio with visual stimulation in order to create a greater impact of the students’ learning capacity. Objective: The students will function in an English-speaking role by become a member of the audience for an authentic aural experience. This reflects an attempt to move away from the Grammar Translation Method (Brown, 2000, p. 16). The students are expected to be able to understand the lyrics contained in the song with the help of several scaffolding exercises. Students will experience the reinforcement of words, phrases and grammatical constructions that have previously been taught. They will also learn new words and phrases, as well as observe authentic ways in which native English speakers sometimes bend the rules of Standard English. The reinforcement activities used in the lesson (repetition, scrambling, etc. ) will aid the production skill of speaking as it allows the hearer the opportunity to try to say the word or phrase and the repetitions done within the song (chorus/refrain). They will give the student opportunities to try and retry pronunciation until perfection is achieved. Rationale: 1. The interest of the students in music is expected be piqued by the lead-in exercise. It aids them by capturing and keeping their attention fixed on the task. Because â€Å"a complex task such as language learning involves [all methods] of learning, from signal learning to problem solving,† this task seeks to stimulate the students’ faculties so they are prompted to use all their resources (visual, aural and reasoning skills) to figure out what happens in the song (Brown, 2005, p. 91-92). 2. Students are asked to look at the pictures being generated and create an order for the story in order to keep their minds on the task and engaging their interest in it. It also gets them thinking about the possible vocabulary related to the topic. The students are given the chance to make predictions about the story in an effort to encourage their speech in English the translation of ideas into a language other than their native one. When they have practice translating their own thoughts into English, it makes each successive attempt to do so easier. This task also focuses on visual reception. 3. This task focuses on aural and visual reception, as the teacher says the name of the objects as he/she shows its picture. However, the task also aids oral production in that it identifies and unites the visual representation of the word in print with the sound it has when a native speaker uses it. This is as opposed to learning vocabulary in isolation, as according to Ausubel, â€Å"people of all ages have little need for rote, mechanistic learning† (qtd. in Brown, 2000, p. 63). The pictures act as a method of scaffolding via which the students are able to better understand (or learn) the words being spoken. 4. The pre-teaching exercises have laid the foundation and now facilitate the gathering of the gist of the song in its first playing. The scrambling of the lyrics acts as a means of scaffolding these elementary learners and helps them to know what they are to listen for. This is done so that students are able to get the broad understanding during the first viewing, and this frees them to listen for details in the second listening. It also gives them a chance to use new words and phrases they may have picked up during the exercise and aids in the clarification of details that students might have misunderstood. 5. Students are required to read various sentences and phrases of the song in order to reinforce their ability to speak the language and to make predictions about grammar and diction. It also gives them a chance to say the word in the way a native would pronounce them rather than adhering too closely to a phonetic representation of the words/phrases. It also gives them the opportunity to query new words or phrases they heard in the film. Repetition of the song also reinforces listening comprehension, especially as it regards hearing the details. Later, the collaborative listening and speaking (in pairs) allows the students to pool their resources in constructing a coherent English reconstruction of the lyrics. This gives students a chance to learn from each other. It puts the language even more into the context of social interaction—building on the idea that â€Å"language is behaviour, that is, a phase of human activity that must not be treated in essence as structurally divorced from the structure of non-verbal human activity† (Pike, 1967, p. 26). The activity also gives them practice speaking the language to each other and prepares them informally for their oral presentation assignment. 6. The oral presentation is focused specifically on the oral aspect of using the English language. The students are expected to put their own thoughts together in the form of a story and translate their ideas into an English medium. In this way, they are encouraged to speak the language so that native and non-native speakers will be able to understand. Because this part of the lesson is an extension, it allows them to use some of the words and phrases they have learned in the lesson. 7. The flexi stage of the lesson also provides the students with the collaborative help that will enhance their ability to express themselves. Because they have a choice in what they present, their interest is likely to be sustained (Brown, 2000; Scrivener, 2005). The assignment also allows them the time and freedom to locate new words and phrases that will aid their articulation of their ideas. This also encourages learning of new English words, phrases and grammatical constructions. The task also provides a means of productive discussion and extension without overwhelming the students. References Brown, H. D. (2000). Principles of language learning and teaching. White Plains: Pearson Education. Pike, K. (1967). Language in relation to a unified theory of the structure of human behavior. The Hague: Mouton Publishers. Scrivener, J. (2005). Learning Teaching. New York: MacMillan.