George Singer publishes Family Support and Family Caregiving across Disabilities

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

George H.S. Singer, professor in the Department of Education at UC Santa Barbara’s Gevirtz School, along with Dr. David Biegel at Case Western Reserve University and Patricia Conway at Maryville State University, have co-edited Family Support and Family Caregiving across Disabilities (Routledge, 2011). This book – originally published as a two-part special issue in the Journal of Family Social Work – also contains articles co-written by Gevirtz School Associate Professor Mian Wang and Gevirtz School alumna Brandy Ethridge.

Family members provide the majority of care for individuals with disabilities in the United States. Recognition is growing that family caregiving deserves and may require societal support, and evidence-based practices have been established for reducing stress associated with caregiving. Despite the substantial research literature on family support that has developed, researchers, advocates and professionals have often worked in separate categorical domains such as family support for caregiving for the frail elderly, for individuals with mental illness, or for people with development disabilities.

Family Support and Family Caregiving across Disabilities addresses this significant limitation through cross-categorical and lifespan analyses of family support and family caregiving from the perspectives of theory and conceptual frameworks, empirical research, and frameworks and recommendations for improvements in public policy. The book also examines children with disabilities, children with autism, adults with schizophrenia, and individuals with cancer across the life cycle.

Dr. George Singer is a Professor in the Department of Education in the Special Education, Disability, and Risk Studies emphasis. Prior to this job he worked as a special education teacher, a vocational specialist, a behavior specialist, and a group home director. Early in his career Singer was active trying to shut down developmental centers for children and creating and evaluating community alternatives for children who had challenging behavior and severe disabilities. He worked as a research scientist for 10 years at the Oregon Research Institute, writing grant proposals and administering research and model demonstration projects focused on supporting families. From 1991-95 he directed the Hood Center for Family Support at the Dartmouth Medical School, where he and his colleagues started a statewide family support program for families of children with chronic illnesses. Currently, Singer is interested in ways to improve teacher education, instruction for students in inclusive classrooms, and evidence based practices for supporting families.

[George Singer is available for interviews; contact George Yatchisin at 805 893 5789]