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Below are the 3 most recent journal entries recorded in Social Work Issues and Policy's LiveJournal:

Thursday, March 23rd, 2006
6:22 pm
[queen_esther7]
Dignity in immigration?


"When we discuss this debate, it must be done in a civil way," Bush said during a meeting with groups pushing for changes to immigration laws. "It must be done in a way that brings dignity to the process. It must be done in a way that doesn't pit people against another."

Bush wants Congress to create a worker program under which participants could gain legal status for a specific time and then be required to return home. It would not provide an automatic path to citizenship.

"Our government must enforce our borders," Bush said. "We've got plans in place to do so. But part of enforcing our borders is to have a guest worker program that encourages people to register their presence so that we know who they are and says to them, 'If you are doing a job that Americans won't do, you're welcome here for a period of time to do that job.' " 

- from cnn politics website today

Why does this country view others as less than them. I have no problem with American pride, but give other citizens of other nations the same respect.
Thursday, March 2nd, 2006
12:11 am
[queen_esther7]
My Heroes -Links
The following are three of my heroes that have fought for social justice and freedom for oppressed and vulnerable populations on a macro-level. Their stories are inspiring.


Martin Luther King Jr.
http://www.thekingcenter.org/
(2 comments | Leave a comment)




The work of Princess Diana
http://www.althorp.com/diana-a-celebration/work.asp
(Leave a comment)




Queen Esther
http://www.8x.com/onenight/video_trailer.htm
re three of my heroes who fought for social justice, and freedom for oppressed and vunerable populations on a macro-level. Their stories are inspiring to me.
12:06 am
[queen_esther7]
Social Work Title Protection
We started this discussion on my journal so there are some responses and post on this issue included in this entry. I look forward to your input on the issue

Social Work Title Protection
This clause takes the effectiveness out of the legislation.

"This legislation does not require organizations to change the responsibilities of persons currently practicing as “social workers” without a degree. It simply requires organizations to implement job titles that reflect the professional training and expertise of their employees"


-While protecting the title of social worker to those that possess the necessary credentials, the legislation still allows those who are in the social work profession, but do not possess the necessary skills and training to still serve the public in the capacity in which they are in by calling themselves a name other than social worker.
What can we do to address this issue?

All of your thoughts would be greatly appreciated. We will be addressing this issue tommorow at SWDOH in Nashville, so if you could respond before then, your suggestions can be used in addressing this issue on a macro level. For further detailson the title protection legislation , please read the attatched links





An important bill was passed this year by the Tennessee General Assembly
that specifies appropriate use of the title social worker

What Is This Legislation?
Public Chapter 469 was signed by the Governor on June 18, 2005 after being passed on the floor of the Senate and House of Representatives without opposition. This bill, to be implemented July 1, 2006, was supported by the Tennessee Chapter of NASW to provide consumer protection and specify appropriate use of the title social worker. The use of the title social worker is restricted in the legislation to persons who have received a baccalaureate or master’s degree in social work from an accredited social work program, received a doctorate or Ph.D. in social work, or have a CMSW or LCSW certificate or license from the State of Tennessee.

Why Was This Legislation Needed?
As a society we have come to trust that persons using a certain title have completed specific training to prepare them for their work in assisting the public. Residents of Tennessee do not want to receive legal advice from someone calling himself a lawyer who has not completed a law degree or to receive care from someone calling herself a nurse who does not have the appropriate educational training.

When potential consumers are introduced to a social worker they expect that person is there to help them with special skills and knowledge. In the past, caring persons with good hearts providing help to their friends and neighbors were often referred to as social workers. However, throughout the years, a body of knowledge and research has developed and educational requirements have been implemented that provide specific skills and training for social work practice. Accredited social work programs face stringent requirements in their work to prepare caring professionals possessing a bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree in social work. However, the public often believes they are receiving services from trained social workers when they are receiving assistance from persons who do not have any training in social work. The media may also refer to anyone in a role of helping the public as a “social worker” without verifying their real job title. We can all remember examples of this in the area of child welfare.

Public Chapter 469
► Meets the needs of consumers by ensuring that positions requiring the skill and training of professional social workers are filled with fully qualified professionals.
► Protects the public by restricting the use of the title social worker to professionals who abide by an ethical code that emphasizes competency and integrity.
► Provides Truth in Public Information.
► Helps maintain the public confidence in professional social workers – such confidence is a critical element in successful social work with many individuals, families and communities.

This legislation does not require organizations to change the responsibilities of persons currently practicing as “social workers” without a degree. It simply requires organizations to implement job titles that reflect the professional training and expertise of their employees.

What Social Work Title Protection Did Tennessee Have Prior to the Passage of This Legislation?
► Prior to this legislation anyone could call himself or herself a social worker without regard to training or preparation. Untrained persons, including convicted child abusers for example, could call themselves social workers.
► Since the 1980s Tennessee has provided Title Protection for Certified Master’s Social Workers (CMSW) and Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSW). Even individuals with these titles suffer when the terms social work and social worker are used indiscriminately.

For Additional Information
Please contact Karen Franklin, NASW-TN Executive Director, at (877) 810-8103 or Stewart Clifton, our Legislative Liaison, at (615) 305-2946 for additional information.


CHAPTER NO. 469
SENATE BILL NO. 1804
By Herron, Burchett, Crowe, Kurita
Substituted for: House Bill No. 1844
By Odom, Sontany, Armstrong, Sherry Jones, Moore, Mike Turner, DuBois, Crider, Marrero
AN ACT to amend Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 63, Chapter 23, relative to social workers and consumer
protection.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF TENNESSEE:
SECTION 1. Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 63, Chapter 23, is amended by adding the following
as a new section:
63-23-111.
(a) A social worker is an individual who has:
(1) Received a baccalaureate or master’s degree in social work from an
accredited social work program approved by the council on social work education;
(2) Received a doctorate or Ph.D. in social work; or
(3) A current certified master social worker certificate or independent practitioner
of social work license as set forth in § 63-23-102 and § 63-23-103.
(b) No person shall hold out to be a social worker unless such person has:
(1) Received a baccalaureate or master’s degree in social work from an
accredited social work school or program;
(2) Received a doctorate or Ph.D. in social work; or
(3) A current certified master social worker certificate or independent practitioner
of social work license as set forth in § 63-23-102 and § 63-23-103.
(c) No government entities, public or private agencies, business or organizations in the
state shall use the title social worker or any form of the title for volunteer or employment positions or
within contracts for services, documents, manuals, or reference material effective July 1, 2005, unless
the volunteers or employees in those positions meet the criteria set forth in this section.
(d) Any individual meeting the qualifications provided for in 42 C.F.R. § 483 of the code of federal
regulations may practice as a "qualified social worker" as defined in those regulations in any nursing home
licensed in the state, and shall not be required to meet the requirements of subsections (a)-(c). Any such
individual may not use the title "social worker" except in connection with the activities of the nursing home.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2006, the public welfare requiring it.



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pixeldrift
2006-02-28 11:05 pm UTC (link) Select
I'm not quite sure I undestand how that clause removes the point of the legislation.

"It simply requires organizations to implement job titles that reflect the professional training and expertise of their employees"

I think it's plenty reasonable to adjust the person's title to be more appropriate so as not to misrepresentation their trainingg. Isn't that the point of the thing, to protect the meaning of the title? What other option would there be? Fire someone who is doing a good job just because they don't have a specific degree? I feel like I'm missing something...
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queen_esther7
2006-03-01 07:47 am UTC (link) Select
The part I cited doesn't remove the point, it takes out some of the effectiveness of the legislation. It creates a loophole for agencies to work around the legislation.

The immediate goal of this legislation is for those who call themselves social workers to have the academic credentials of a social worker to be able to call themselves social workers. But the ultimate goal of title protection is to be able to provide our clients with the best services possible. This is the first step, and I suppose this legislation is taking that first step.

But the ultimate goal of the push for title protection is to provide clients in the in the public welfare system with social workers who have the training and skills necessary to empower and serve this population from a strengths perspective. -This academic paradigm is not the basis of practice models in other social science disciplines. In addition to this, social workers possessing the academic credentials of a social worker have to adhere to the NASW Code of Ethics in their practice with these clients-many of which are oppressed and vulnerable populations. It is important that this Code of Ethics is adhered to by all professionals who serve this population in the capacity of a social service provider (whether/not they call themselves social workers)so that we protect the rights of our clients.

The problem I have with the clause creating a loophole is that it gives agencies the opportunity to keep professionals providing social services to our clients who do lack the skills of a legitimate social worker so long as these professionals are called anything but social workers (e.g. case managers, family specialist, home study specialist....)
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queen_esther7
2006-03-01 08:10 am UTC (link) Select
I am only half way done w/ my response, got to take a nap, I will respond to the other part later :)
(Reply to this)(Parent)


queen_esther7
2006-03-02 03:49 am UTC (link) Select
As for the other part of dealing with those who are already in the profession and don't have the necessary qualifications. I am going to try to create what I call an "Affirmative Action Proposal for Chapter Social Work Title Protection Legislation". More to come on this after another nap ;)
I know there are mixed feelings about affirmative action to begin with. But trust me, I have absolutely no intention of lowering social work practice standards for anyone. On the other hand, I feel like we are obligated to help those who have put years of work into social services meet the professional standards that we are trying to create.
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