• Analysis of factors affecting sterilization rates for Puerto Rican women living in the Bronx, New York

      Greenberg, Karen Elfman; Palley, Howard A. (1992)
      The aim of the study was to explain the high incidence of sterilization using a sample of 2033 Puerto Rican women, ages 15-49 years collected by Fordham University between May 1985 to December 1986. The study examined three objectives: (1) to determine the differing rates of sterilization among Puerto Rican women born on the island, the mainland, and for those who migrate back and forth, (2) to investigate the sterilization behavior of Puerto Rican women in their context and determine to what degree the behavior is a result of socioeconomic and life event variables, and (3) to understand the various implications of sterilization behavior of women. Three hypotheses were tested for the first objective. The data indicated that island women had a higher rate of sterilization than mainland Puerto Rican, that mainland Puerto Rican women had a higher rate of sterilization than their white non-hispanic women counterparts and that van y ven women had the lowest sterilization rate. Two models were developed to explore the second objective and multivariate regression techniques were used to test the predictive power of the Model I socioeconomic variables while Model II used life event variables. In Model I, only income was found to be a good predictor of sterilization. All three Model II variables, number of children, age at first marriage and age at first birth proved to be good predictors of sterilization. For the third objective a qualitative instrument using 24 questions served as the cornerstone for 10 interviews with social work practitioners to compare practical experience and explore ethnic dilemmas in social work. Data extrapolated from the replies of the practitioners reinforced the findings for income in Model I and all Model II variables. The data demonstrated that insularity and machismo are at the core of Puerto Rican culture. Insularity has been fostered in the face of economic hardships while machismo is a lifestyle that does not allow Puerto Rican women to go beyond their traditional roles. These issues are crucial to understanding the pattern of fertility behavior for Puerto Rican women. The results from the comparison of sterilization rates, Model I and II variables and the interviews suggest that low income Puerto Rican women in the Bronx, New York remain insular and choose sterilization as the traditional method of Puerto Rican birth control.
    • Creating harmony, creating happiness: Subjective well-being of older Koreans in the United States

      Park-Lee, Eunice Y.; Oktay, Julianne S. (2005)
      The present qualitative study examined life and aging experiences of elderly Korean Americans. More specifically, it explored how diverse experiences of older Koreans were used to create the meaning of "the good life" and to appraise their well-being in old age. In addition to observing elderly individuals in various social settings, a series of in-depth, face-to-face interviews were conducted with 15 theoretically sampled elderly Koreans with intact cognitive ability who resided in the Washington Metropolitan area. Guided by the grounded theory approach of Glaser and Strauss (1967) and Strauss and Corbin (1998), data were collected and analyzed concurrently throughout the course of the study. "The good life," to older Korean immigrants, implied having continuity of the self while living in harmony. Only when their relationships with others were harmonious, could older Korean immigrants truly continue being the person they had always been. Harmonious social relationships could be maintained when they had comfort in both mind and body and, subsequently, had the freedom to do what they wanted. Employing their own definition of "the good life," each of the elderly evaluated his or her life circumstances. Upon identifying discrepancies between their actual life and their ideal life, they made behavioral and cognitive efforts to reduce and/or accept them. When their attempts were successful, the elderly could preserve harmony in their relationships with others and create happiness for themselves. Such efforts were continuously required since both aging and immigration/acculturation continually brought about changes in their environment. Hardy/resilient individuals thus were more effective in sustaining their efforts in coping with the discrepancies and creating as well as maintaining a positive sense of well-being. Consistent with Korean culture, "the good life" was not seen as an outcome of an individual's hard work. Instead it was viewed as a collaborative task to which both the elderly individual and the environment contributed. This collaborative orientation towards "the good life," therefore, should be taken into consideration when developing services and policy for well-being of older Korean immigrants. Limitations of the study and the study findings are discussed in relation to existing research.
    • Domestic violence in the Baltimore Orthodox Jewish community: An exploration of prevalence, dynamics, and patterns by women who have reported abuse

      Freedman, Michael Bruce; Cornelius, Llewellyn Joseph, 1959- (2005)
      This study explores religious, psychological, and sociological dynamics of domestic violence in the Baltimore Jewish community especially the Orthodox community. The Baltimore Jewish community of 91,400 practices Judaism along a continuum from Orthodox to unaffiliated. The Orthodox Jewish community comprises 21% of Jews. Secondary analysis from a convenience sample by Ephross (1996) was used. There were 1,534 respondents, an approximately 10% response rate. Jewish denomination was dichotomized to Orthodox and non-Orthodox due to rigidity of religious gender roles for women in Orthodoxy and more egalitarian roles in non-Orthodoxy. Gender Role Theory and an Adapted Norton's Dual Perspective (The Tri-Perspective) were presented to explain abuse in the Jewish community. Patriarchy was assumed to promote violence as a mechanism of control especially in the Orthodox. Chi-squares analyses were used to explore associations for different types of abuse (physical, verbal, threatened, begged for money, property destroyed, and forced sex). Demographic characteristics (age, education, and employment) were examined by denomination. Additionally, awareness and seriousness of domestic violence in the Jewish community were examined. Finally, chi-squares analyses were used to explore to whom abuse was reported, responses received, and reasons for non-reporting by denomination. Findings indicate that abuse in the total sample (more than a single incident) is commensurate with that in the general population. Significant findings indicate that it may be more likely for non-Orthodox women to experience both physical and verbal abuse than Orthodox women in this sample. All other results were non-significant. Gender Role Theory and The Tri-Perspective were helpful in explaining domestic violence in the Jewish community. The Discussion section presents several unique dynamics of abuse in the Orthodox Jewish community including institutional cognitive dissonance, denial, and failure of community mobilization, especially rabbinic. There are several components of Jewish law that limit and hamper the confrontation of this problem. Implications for practice, theory, and policy for those who work within the Jewish community are furnished. Education and training of rabbis and lay leaders are vital. Recommendations for future research are provided. A literature review is included.
    • The neighborhood correlates of child maltreatment: Montgomery County, Maryland

      Ernst, Joy Swanson; Zuravin, Susan J., 1944- (1999)
      This study aimed to extend theoretical and empirical knowledge about the neighborhood-level determinants of child maltreatment in a suburban jurisdiction. The objectives were to: (1) compare the distribution by neighborhood of physical abuse, neglect, and sexual abuse; (2) identify and compare the neighborhood correlates of these three types of child maltreatment; (3) identify and compare racial- and ethnic-specific rates and correlates of child maltreatment; and (4) replicate a study of community-level factors and child maltreatment in Cleveland, Ohio, with Montgomery County, Maryland, data. Families investigated for child maltreatment in 1995 were matched to their U.S. census tract, the operational definition of neighborhood. Rates of maltreatment were calculated and mapped for each of the county's 159 tracts and used as dependent variables in regression models that revealed the neighborhood-level correlates of three, types of maltreatment and racial- and ethnic-specific rates of maltreatment. Predictor variables hypothesized to represent economic and social resources were derived from 1990 U.S. census data. To replicate the Cleveland study, variables representing levels of community social organization were subjected to a principal components analysis. Factors derived from that analysis were used as independent variables in a regression analysis of the child maltreatment rate.;Results for each objective extended knowledge of neighborhood-level factors associated with maltreatment. First, the distribution of child maltreatment varied by type of maltreatment and by neighborhood. Physical abuse was the most common; sexual abuse the least common. Second, variables representing economic and social resources accounted for a significant proportion of the variance in rates of physical abuse, neglect, and sexual abuse. Social resource variables contributed independently to the variance in the rates of physical abuse. Significant correlates varied by type of maltreatment. Third, the rates and distribution of maltreatment differed by racial and ethnic group, with the highest rates among Black families and the lowest among White families. The set of predictor variables accounted for a significant proportion of the variance in the rates of both White and Black maltreatment. Fourth, the replication revealed that neighborhood rates of child maltreatment varied with community-level factors associated with economic disadvantage and residential instability.
    • Older women: An analysis of the influences of race, health status, and social network involvement on use of community services

      Soniat, Barbara Ann; Oktay, Julianne S. (1992)
      This study examined the effect of race, health status, socioeconomic status and social network involvement on use of community services by elderly women. The data for the study were extracted from the 1984 Supplement on Aging, a national survey of older Americans. The sub-sample used in this study consisted of 6578 Black and White women age sixty-five and older. The Andersen behavioral model of service utilization was used to examine the predictive values of predisposing, enabling and need variables for determining use of community services. Logistic regression analysis was used to examine the individual and combined effects of demographic, individual and sociocultural factors on use of community services by older women. A key issue addressed by this research was utilization of community services by elderly Black women. When race and use of social and support services were examined without controls, there were no significant racial differences in use of social services. However, Black women were more likely to use support services. In logistic regression analyses that controlled for the influences of the other study variables, Black women were more likely to use social services, but race did not have any additional explanatory value for predicting use of support services. When the Andersen model was applied separately to the two groups, the results revealed that the predictive factors operated differently. For example, Black women's use of social services declined with age. Age had an opposite effect for White women, with service utilization increasing with age. The study indicates that strategies for targeting services to diverse racial groups need to consider both within and between group differences in utilization behaviors.