Välkommen in? En studie om socialkontors väntrum
This is a paper about the social services waiting rooms. Our aim with the study has been to:
”Describe and problematize the physical environment in social services waiting rooms. A wider purpose is to lift the question about the waiting room as a significant part of peoples encounter with the social services.”
To be able to achieve this purpose, we have used two questions: What does the physical waiting room environment look like in social services in Stockholms län? How can we understand and problematize the physical environment factors impact on people who visits these environments?
We have observed and photographed ten waiting rooms in ten different social services in Stockholms län. In the paper we describe what the environments look like, with text and whit pictures. Then we have analysed the results from four different theoretical perspectives. These four perspectives are: nursing theory, environmental psychology, power theory and theories about material.
Our conclusions is that the environment in the different waiting rooms shift a lot, but the thing the most of them have in common is that there doesn’t seem to be a lot of thought behind the design and configuration of the waiting room. Half of them don’t have windows and the environment is generally stripped. All of the waiting rooms have receptions covered all up with glass, with slots that the receptionist opens when someone comes up to the reception. Most of the waiting rooms also have walls and doors of glass facing the corridors where the visit rooms and the social workers offices are located. These are covered so that you cannot see in to the corridors. There is also a lack of a children’s perspective in the environments.
We mean that the poorly designed waiting rooms, with all the security built in to them, create and maintain the unequal relations between the social worker and the client, where the client is constructed as the ’the other’ and the dangerous.
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