Certain aspects of Native American cultures may affect the process and outcome of Native Americans who seek out assistance from social workers.The values and norms inherent in many Native American cultures often present unique circumstances when individuals from those cultures deal with the dominant culture.
There are at least 550 different Native American tribes in the United States, and within those tribes are unique and distinct cultural variables to assess.Because all of those tribes combined are broadly defined as Native Americans, and for thepurposes and scope of this paper, the information discussed is in reference to those hundreds of tribes as one set of cultures commonly referred to by the dominant culture as American Indians or Native Americans. As with most cultures, the Native American culture has its own set of values (different tribes have their own specific and independent set of standards which can vary greatly in certain aspects ).American middle -class and American Indian cultural values differ in major areas .How individuals in these two groups view man's relationship with nature, relations with peopleand time areactuallyopposite.According to Giordano, McGoldrick and Pearce (1982), Middle -class Americans attachvalue in having control over the environment/nature while Native Americans value being in harmony with nature.Native Americansare more concerned with the group rather than the individual, whereas middle-class Americans value the individual.
In regards to time orientation, Native Americans view daily life as situated in the present, past and then future; middle-class Americans view it future, present , past. There are about 2.3 million Native Americans in the United States,accounting for just 0.9 percent of all Americans (Russell, 1996).
The National Census reported in 1990 thatnearly half of natives living on reservations were living below the standards con…