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CREATING SAFETY: Checking Power & Control in Support Relationships

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CREATING SAFETY: Checking Power & Controlin Support Relationships

Mark Sweet PhD Trainer & Consultant Disability Rights Wisconsin 608 267 0214 msweet@drwi.org www:disabilityrightswi.org


 What is Organizational Culture?

assumptions, expectations, beliefs, language, humor, level of trust, whose POV is more dominant

  • Organizational Culture re: Autonomy, Choice, Self-Direction

    re: Support Relationships


 How are support relationships, paid or volunteer, different than friendships;what limitations/boundaries?

 Places & Activities  Time (paid or unpaid; work or nonwork)  Physical Contact  Expressions of Emotion (I love you) Giving/Accepting Gifts ($ and other)  Personal Information; Topics 


Why should there be limitations?

 Imbalance in power & control

 Some are considered more vulnerable; protection  undue influence taken advantage of

 Avoid confusion in relationship

 Opportunities


 Questions to help you decide.

 Who has more power in this relationship?

 Will my choice add clarity or confusion?

 Who will benefit (by my decisions)?

 What is myintention; her/his intention?

 What opportunities might be missed?


Power & Control Wheel: People With Disabilities & Their Caregivers

 Intimidation

 Emotional Abuse

 Isolation

 Minimize, Justify, Blame

 Withhold, Misuse or Delay Support

 Economic Abuse Caregiver Privilege

 Coercion & Threats


  • What circumstances in your support relationships fit the categories on the power & control wheel?

  • What might help within your organizational culture to prevent ordinary & unintentional misuses of power & control in support relationships?


Available soon at: disabilityrightswi.org

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