It is important for health practitioners to examine what changing families and the changing ecology of families mean to them and to their work. The thoughtful chapters in this book trace the progression of themes that have been developed: the focus on an historical approach; an examination of social class and its impact on families; a balanced and thoughtful look at not only the needs but also the strengths of black families; a similar look at single-parent families; and a look at newer family forms and policy implications. My chapter fits into the latter part of this sequence. It will focus on public policies as they affect families, both positively and negatively. This focus does not mean or imply that families simply respond helplessly to public policies. Families are agents of change as well. The connection goes both ways.
KeywordsPublic Policy American Family Wage Earner Black Family Family Impact
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