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News Items – March 16, 2023

Valerie Arendt is executive director of NASW-NC:
‘Not paid what we’re worth’: NC social workers say they are essential, but undervalued
ABC 11
The North Carolina School Social Workers Association hosted hundreds of school social workers Friday. There were dozens of stories like Britton’s in the room of more than 300 social workers. They say while their work is essential, they’re undervalued. They stood up sharing their stories in an effort to appeal to four lawmakers on stage. “A big piece of our legislative agenda this year and for years in the past is to restore master’s level pay for school social workers,” said Valerie Arendt, North Carolina National Association of Social Workers.

Maria Baratta is a member of NASW-NYC:
Why Rigidity Causes Marriages and Relationships to Fail
Psychology Today
It is common knowledge that a large percentage of marriages end in divorce and relationship breakups happen all the time. There is always a narrative as to why the relationships failed in these cases. The narratives often have familiar themes: incompatibility, unmet needs, addictions, and betrayals, all familiar and logical issues that lead to the end of a relationship. Yet in my decades of experience as a therapist, there is a consistent and common thread that seems to point to the inability to work things out in order to stay together. That common thread, the number one cause of marriage and relationship failure, is rigidity.

Catherine Dukes is a member of NASW-DE:
5 Ways to Avoid Fighting About Money With Your Partner, Therapists Say
Best Life
“Couples should spend time over several date nights talking about money, how they feel about money, and how money was handled or talked about in their families growing up—couples should share how these lessons impacted them and the way they manage their own finances now,” says Catherine Dukes, LCSW, sex therapist and couples therapist.

Jodi Taub is a member of NASW-NYS:
Grownups Need Friends, Too
CSL Behring
It’s just tougher to make close friends after high school and college, said Licensed Clinical Social Worker Jodi Taub. “Experiencing ‘firsts’ with friends during these key developmental time periods can create deep bonds,” she said. “There are fewer opportunities to make friends with common interests as you age due to work and daily life obligations.” We should recognize that our friendships might change over time, Taub said. It’s OK to feel close or not so close to friends at different points in our lives. Keep friendships strong by making the effort, even in small ways like sending a text. A 2022 study found that people consistently undervalued how meaningful a simple message from a friend was.

Erika Behunin is an associate member of NASW-UT:
Life can be hard, here are 6 tips to navigate difficult situations
Often when we are in the midst of a difficult situation our reactions can make the problem worse or we sweep our problems under the rug. Erika Behunin is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and joined Jenny Hardman in studio with 6 Tips for Navigating Difficult Times.

Stephanie Cartwright-Karlsson is a member of NASW-MN:
Biden’s Proposal to Limit Online Prescribing Is a Raw Deal for the Most Vulnerable Patients
The New Republic
The announcement raised alarm bells for many patients and mental health professionals. When Stephanie Cartwright-Karlsson—a licensed clinical social worker in Minnesota who has ADHD and is disabled—saw the news, she said, “My heart sank, and I had an immediate rush of anxiety and a sense of despair and hopelessness. I immediately thought of my clients who have already been waiting months to see a psychiatrist for an ADHD medication consultation, many of whom are rural, disabled and/or immunocompromised,” she said.

Barb Elgin is a member of NASW-MD:
Baltimore County Public Library expands social worker program
Baltimore Fishbowl
Two new social workers were added to the library staff to help expand their reach. Social worker Barbara Elgin will provide assistance at the Parkville-Carney, Perry Hall, Rosedale, Sollers Point and White Marsh branches. Meanwhile, Valerie Greisman now has regular office hours at the Arbutus, Catonsville, Lansdowne, Pikesville, Randallstown and Woodlawn branches. 

Brenda Rosen is executive director of NASW-KY:
‘Book-banning’ measure nears final passage in Ky. General Assembly
“Which children are we trying to protect?” asked Brenda Rosen, testifying on behalf of the Kentucky Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers. Rosen noted that LGBTQ youth have astoundingly high rates of suicide, due to lack of acceptance by their communities and society at large. A 2022 survey by the Trevor Project found 45% of LGTBQ youth have seriously considered attempting suicide in the previous year. For trans and nonbinary youth, more than half have considered suicide. “What about the child that needs that book? That that book might be something that helps to sustain, to support, to engage, educate and empower,” she said.

Stacy Liss is a member of NASW-NJ:
She tried to kill herself at 13. Why girls make the majority of N.J. teen overdose attempts.
Girls are not inherently more susceptible to anxiety, depression or suicidal thoughts than boys. Many teen boys continue to struggle, said Stacy Liss, a licensed clinical social worker at Red Bank Regional High School. The district’s youth services center, “The Source,” has worked with 1,074 students this year, and a slim majority are girls.

Melissa Floyd-Pickard is a member of NASW-NC:
Rising demand makes it difficult to keep Narcan stocked
A rise in overdoses is creating a higher demand for Narcan, making the potentially life-saving medication harder to find. Doctor Melissa Floyd-Pickard, a licensed clinical social worker and lead researcher for GCStop, recently attended a fentanyl town hall at Northern Guilford High School. The message there wasn’t just about avoiding drugs. “I think people are ordering things online, thinking they’re getting it from someone reputable. I know I’ve been hearing presentations lately about teenagers who are curious who are trying to explore, that are ordering things on Snapchat and Craigslist,” she explained.

Social Work Month:

Op-ed | How to make an impact this Social Work Month
This year’s theme for Social Work Month is “Social Work Breaks Barriers.” I’m proud to have broken barriers on behalf of children and families in Brooklyn and across NYC. This March, I encourage you to take time to learn about the many positive contributions of the profession, and celebrate all the social workers you know.

Chris McLaughlin is executive director of NASW-ME:
Commentary: Maine’s social workers deserve more of our support
The Press-Herald
March is Social Work Month, and the theme this year is “Social Work Breaks Barriers.” This theme resonates now more than ever. Social workers are helping our nation overcome myriad challenges: tackling the effects of racism, economic inequality, the fight for reproductive rights, the oppression of marginalized communities and natural disasters worsened by climate change.

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