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Bits & Pieces: Disability Awareness, Reproductive Justice and MoreBy Rachel L. West, MSW, LMSW
The Political Social Worker
From Disability Awareness Month to…View Post

Bits & Pieces: Disability Awareness, Reproductive Justice and More

By Rachel L. West, MSW, LMSW
The Political Social Worker

From Disability Awareness Month to…

View Post

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Becoming a Political Social WorkerBy Rachel L. West, MSW, LMSW
The Political Social Worker
Many readers stumble upon The Political…View Post

Becoming a Political Social Worker

By Rachel L. West, MSW, LMSW
The Political Social Worker

Many readers stumble upon The Political…

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Would love to hear some feedback on this.

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Cautiously optimistic.

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kvren said: There has recently been a shift in leadership for the PA chapter, and with that change, a lot has improved. Recently we had over 800 social workers/social work students rally together in Harrisburg for Legislative Advocacy Day, where we are trying to get licensure at the bachelor's level.

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majd3st1ny said: Yeah... This may be only subjective to CA. I have personally seen NASW reps from my state spoken on television and local news station!

Rachel L. West, MSW, LMSW
The Political Social Worker

That is great.  I would be interested in hearing if anyone else has seen their local NASW getting media coverage.  

I have a colleague in NC who has had pretty much a similar experience with them.  Most of my New York peers also felt the way I did. One of my university friends said she also decided not to renew her membership because she didn’t see any benefit to it.

My experience with the county chapter is that they were bad at communicating with members and failed to properly publicize events.  Just trying to find dates and times for chapter meetings was challenging and they rarely responded to emails.  I didn’t feel the state chapter was much better as they also failed to properly publicize or recruit for lobby day and only engaged membership when it was time to renew.  

I was also disheartened by the lack of support for macro social workers. None of the CEU classes offered were geared towards those of us in community practice.  Nor were the majority of the articles in the state newsletter or the national newsletter.  So I certainly didn’t see a benefit there.

What has everyone elses experience been (with either the National or your state chapter)?  Is your state chapter visible in your local media? Do they have good communication with members? Do you feel there has been an appropriate level of advocacy for the profession? Do you feel the NASW is addressing the right issues when it comes to improving social work?

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Essentially these are all things that could be done by a union, which the NASW is registered as.  One of the reasons I opted not to renew my membership with them was because I saw next to zero attempt on their part to effectively organize their membership into advocating for change ( on the state or federal level) that would improve the profession.

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unemployedsocialworker:

At first, I was a bit reluctant to post this piece but I believe this is an important point to be made. One thing that attracted to me to social work was its Code of Ethics. I wish more professions would embrace that particular standard. However, there is just something gnawing at me and it has…

Honestly, you don’t need the NASW membership.  Their jobs board hardly has any postings and I have never had an employer or potential employer care about NASW membership.  

Furthermore the only thing the NASW really does is lobby for licensing and title protection.  They do very little to improve working conditions for public sector workers and they merely pay lip service to macro social workers.  It is clear that their priorities (at least in recent years) is to focus on clinical social work particularly those in private practice.

Additionally they have been absent from many important discussions.  Just look at what has been going on with the DSM-5.  

In terms of the Social Work reinvestment act: It has less than 1% chance of passing and for the most part I’m ok with that because it is a flawed bill that probably wouldn’t do much of anything for the profession.

What we really need is a well organized union like the ones representing Teachers or Firefighters.  Unfortunately we do not have that.

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lkhendrickson:

Anyone know someone at the CSWE (Council on Social Work Education) or NASW (National Association of Social Workers)