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Sunderland Repository records the research produced by the University of Sunderland including practice-based research and theses.

A Neoliberalist Solution for a Neoliberalist Problem: The Neoliberalist normalisation of psychosocial support for parent-carers

Deacon, Lesley, Nicholson, Philip and Allen, Kim (2020) A Neoliberalist Solution for a Neoliberalist Problem: The Neoliberalist normalisation of psychosocial support for parent-carers. CASS Woking Papers.

Item Type: Article


Research in the social sciences has challenged the rhetoric that Austerity measures, implemented since the 2008 financial crash, are economically motived; and instead suggest they are underpinned ideologically by Neoliberalism. Such measures have had a significant impact on the most vulnerable members of society, particularly women, and specifically mothers. This small-scale research study sought to understand the experiences of mother parent-carers of children with disabilities and/or life limiting conditions, who accessed psychosocial support from a local charity. The findings show that although parent-carers report immediate benefits from the charity’s psychosocial support services, they do so in a way in which perceived benefits are illustrative of underlying Neoliberalist ideology; such as not expecting help from the state, expecting barriers to support and instead accepting the responsibilsation of their role as parent-carer. This article theorises therefore that the provision of psycho-social support for parent-carers, in particular, is in fact ideologically motivated to minimise state intervention rather than being concerned with parent-carers’ welfare. This raises important questions regarding the degradation of welfare and how, seemingly benefit-focused support (particularly self-help) is in fact perpetuating Neoliberal ideology.

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CASS Working Paper - 9 March 2020 - MD (1).docx - Accepted Version

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Depositing User: Lesley Deacon


Item ID: 12045
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Date Deposited: 15 May 2020 10:44
Last Modified: 09 Aug 2021 10:47


Author: Lesley Deacon
Author: Philip Nicholson
Author: Kim Allen

University Divisions

Centre for Applied Social Sciences


Social Sciences > Health and Social Care

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