Publication Details

Olcon, K. (2019). State of the art in U.S. multicultural social work practice: Client expectations and provider challenges. Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Diversity in Social Work: innovations in theory, research and practice, 28 (1), 7-30.


To obtain a comprehensive view of the level of knowledge and development achieved in multicultural social work practice, I conducted a scoping review of U.S. empirical literature for the 10-year period from 2007 through 2016. The review revealed that across the board racial and ethnic minority clients continue to experience marginalization and report low satisfaction with services. Conversely, providers are subject to some tensions and biases toward multicultural practice exacerbated by employers’ lack of emphasis on cultural competence. The problematic findings from the review suggest that our current approaches to cultural competence may need to be reexamined.



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