Enhancing Micro-Level Police Social Work by Practicing Effective Macro-Level Work

Micro-level social work, involving referral and case management provision, is only as effective as the social service systems in place and resources available within a given community. A lack of communication, collaboration, and existing services and relationships often decrease the timeliness and effectiveness of micro-level social work. In order to enhance the effectiveness of police social work in Valparaiso, Indiana, the police social worker embedded within the Valparaiso Police Department places a large emphasis on macro, community-level social work and relationship building. Some of these macro-level initiatives include the launch of Valparaiso Police Department’s new Police Assisted Recovery Initiative (PARI), the new Community-Based, Recovery-Centered Community Art Program, the newly formed Community Partners Network, and engaging as a law enforcement catalyst within the forming Porter County Crisis Intervention Team (CIT). As a result of this focus on macro-level police social work, clients are often able to be referred and connected with services more efficiently and fewer community members are falling through the cracks of the social service system.