Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


School of Social Welfare

Content Description

1 online resource (ix, 128 pages) : illustrations (some color)

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Nancy Claiborne

Committee Members

Catherine K Lawrence, Glenn D Deane


discrimination, diversity, inclusion, institutional racism, supervision, workplace, Child welfare boards, Child welfare, Racism in public welfare, Race discrimination, Discrimination in employment

Subject Categories

Social Work


The presence of racism within an organization is a threat to its overall health and working because it directly affects the well-being and morale of the employees. More specifically, previous studies have shown that racial and ethnic minority workers face discrimination related to lack of representation in higher positions, exclusion from decision-making bodies as well as discrimination from co-workers, and supervisors. Grounded in the Leader-Member Exchange Theory, this mixed-methods research revisits this problem by identifying previously unknown manifestations and predictors of workplace racism in child welfare agencies. The following research questions were developed: 1) What are the experiences of discrimination, bias, prejudice, and microaggression of child welfare staff within the workplace; 2) What is the association between workers’ demographics, individual and organizational characteristics, and experience of institutional racism; 3) What is the impact of individual and organizational factors on workers’ experience of institutional racism; 4) What are the workers’ experiences of their supervisor’s support in facilitating an inclusive workplace? Using a concurrent nested design data analysis found that institutional racism existed within the agencies. Racialized experiences of workers included bias, microaggression, distrust, separation, non-diverse management, lack of supervisory support, preference in hiring and promotion, and favoritism. Workers of Color reported lower satisfaction with and lower frequency of supervision than the White workers.

Included in

Social Work Commons