Pub. date: 2005 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412950565 | Print ISBN: 9780761928201 | Online ISBN: 9781412950565| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Robert Leibson Hawkins
Over the past few decades, family policy has incrementally emerged as an important academic and governmental issue in the United States. In this sense, it is following Europe's lead, where family policy has long had strong emphasis. Academic and professional fields, such as social work, applied sociology, family science, and applied human and child development, have begun to include social and family policy in their curricula as an important tool for advocacy. Furthermore, some government agencies and nonprofits now employ “family policy analysts” as part of their staffs, to focus on programs and policies related to family well-being. This entry examines family policy and how it is defined and functions in the United States. It also explores how family is defined in order to set policy and briefly looks at useful tools to assess the impact of policies on families and children. The roots of family policy lie in the ...