Thompson (2003) sees power as, "the ability to influence and control people, events processes or resources". The positive side of power enables things to be done and the negative side is abusive and destructive. It is useful to look at the concept "of being in power within a theoretical frame work. Allen (2000) and Thompson (2003) both refer to Weberian concept and idea of Foucault to explain power." In contrast to this concept power is a guiding force also which can be exerted for the benefits of the disadvantaged segment of the society. Brotherton (2008) is of the view that power is all around and we are fully encompassed as every organization works as bureaucratic organization within an obvious hierarchal structure. Therefore, to enable people to participate in assessing the work, which is done for their benefit, and to make them confidence to have their say in decision making is also the facet of power.
Empowerment and advocacy are both concerned with a shift of power or emphasis towards meeting the needs and rights of people who otherwise would be marginalized or oppressed. Beyond this generalization, the concepts of empowerment and advocacy are not simple and as such are almost impossible to define. Where the term 'empowerment' is used it often covers a whole range of activities from consulting with service users to involvement in service planning.
Leadbetter, (2002, p. 201)
This analysis of empowerment emphasizes on the consultation with service users and it calls for the need of involvement of the beneficiaries who are the marginalized segment of the society. The International Association of Schools of Social Work (IASSW) and International Federation of social Work while defining the empowerment, stresses on the principles of human rights and social justice to truly empower the users for this definition believes in the fact that empowering the marginalized is to liberate them. But it does not explain the scope of the word of liberation in the context of social works.
The social work profession promotes social change, problem solving in human relationships and the empowerment and liberation of people to enhance well-being. Utilizing theories of human behaviors and social systems, social work intervenes at points where people interact with their environments. Principles of human rights and social justice are fundamental to social work.
(IASSW, 2001, emphasis added)
Gillen (1994) is of the view that empowerment is a blend of the moral principle of beneficence and the respect for autonomy. The issue of social justice and equality also come in its sphere. It is observed by Graham (2008) that the issue of moral principle is compatible to Kantian principle of respecting people as to make their decisions and choices about their lives and moreover, it is also compatible with 'doing the greater good, particularly when the greater good to care the need of people while providing them the services.