What is Anti-oppressive Social Work

Within Canadian social work, the term “anti-oppressive practice” is generally understood as an umbrella term that encompasses a variety of practice approaches including, but not limited to, radical, structural, feminist, anti-racist, critical, and liberatory frameworks (Bailey & Brake, 1975; Dominelli, 1988; Dominelli & McLeod, 1989; Fook,2002; Leonard, 2001; Moreau, 1993; Roche, Dewees, Trailweaver, Alexander, Cuddy & Handy, 1999). Therefore, rather than being seen as one “practice approach”, anti-oppressive social work can be more accurately understood as a stance or perspective toward practice. The term ‘anti-oppressive social work’ represents the current nomenclature for a range of theories and practices that embrace a social justice perspective.

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