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News Items – April 1, 2022

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Danyale Sturdivant is a member:
Social worker creates nonprofit that advocates for autistic people of color
For Danyale Sturdivant and her son Joshua, an afternoon walk around their neighborhood is the perfect ending to the day, and a chance for Joshua to showcase his impressive knowledge of dogs. “I think it’s Bernese mountain dog mixed with something,” he said to his mother. “What kind of dog is that?” Joshua asked a neighbor. “It’s a Bernese mountain dog with a little bit of poodle,” came the answer. Joshua has lived with autism since infancy, but it wasn’t until their recent move to the Capital Region that his mother noticed a lack of resources and providers that identify with her son. “There is an intersect between race and disability, and that’s what we walk with everyday,” Sturdivant said. It’s why she founded the organization Living Autism Out Loud.

School of Social Work students walk out of classes, demand payment for internships
The Michigan Daily
Graduate students at the University of Michigan School of Social Work walked out of their classes Monday morning and gathered on the Diag to rally for Payments for Placements (P4P). This is a student campaign demanding that the University begin compensating Master of Social Work (MSW) students for their internship work; around 80 members of the campus community attended the walkout.

Expressing appreciation for county’s social workers
Marin Voice
Every year in March, along with women’s history, we celebrate Social Worker Appreciation Month. The National Association of Social Workers has selected this year’s theme as “the time is right for social work.” During the COVID-19 pandemic, many professions have been recognized for their essential workers. These include medical professionals, first responders, teachers, grocery store workers and even delivery drivers. All of these professions deserve nothing but appreciation and accolades. One group that has not been sufficiently acknowledged is social services professionals.

Lynn Zakeri is a member:
Students Lost Out on So Much More than Learning in the Pandemic & We’re Just Beginning to Understand the Impact
She Knows
Lynn Zakeri, a Chicago based licensed clinical social worker said this pediatric mental health crisis is due to children trying to find control in their own ways. “With some of the clients I see the eating disordered behaviors, the self harming, the obsessive compulsive type of behaviors . . . has increased dramatically. The CDC noted the increase in emergency department visits for suicide attempts starting as young as twelve years old. As a middle school counselor Ruiz faced this problem head on.

Kate Morris is a member:
Does Vermont have enough eating disorder treatment for youth?
Their story is one Kate Morris hears all too often. She’s a licensed clinical social worker and intuitive eating counselor based in Central Vermont. Morris says often practitioners will try to form teams to help a patient, but: “Those are piecemeal. And that’s a lot of work for someone who is not at their best.” She says Vermont lacks the wraparound care– nutrition, therapy and counseling– provided by inpatient and residential eating disorder treatment centers. “That’s a big hole in care,” Morris said.

Latesha Newson is a member:
Anjanette Young Ordinance calls for stricter search warrant rules, aims to prevent wrong raids
CBS Chicago
“Who was protecting her rights? Who was preserving her dignity as a person, a social worker who went to work that day to serve others who are in need?” said Latesha Newson, who is a licensed clinical social worker. Young, a social worker, said she chose to hold Saturday’s rally in March because it’s Social Work Month. “The time is right right now and there cannot be a better theme for all of us to use our voices to speak truth to power against all systemic issues, including the one that we’re here for today — the Anjanette Young Ordinance,” she said.

Dawn Cooperstein is a member:
Navigating Intimate Relationships with Complex PTSD
Where post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can be the result of a single traumatic incident, complex PTSD, also known as cPTSD, is a condition that arises from surviving repeated or long-lasting traumatic events, often in childhood. Victims of childhood abuse, adult domestic abuse, and combat veterans are common sufferers. Rebellious columnist Jera Brown interviewed Dawn Cooperstein, LCSW about common issues folks with cPTSD face when it comes to intimate relationships and sexual desires.

Gabriela Sehinkman is a member:
Are Americans Unhappy?
Five Thirty Eight
The disruptions themselves weren’t all bad for Americans’ happiness. Many of the therapists I spoke with said that people who were forced to stay at home had no choice but to face what was already going wrong with their lives, which may have led to an opportunity for personal growth for some. “What happened is that the pandemic was like this big magnifying glass,” said Gabriela Sehinkman, a clinical social worker in Ohio. Some of the signs of distress — seeking therapy, getting a divorce, quitting a job — might be people finally dealing with long-simmering problems rather than just struggling through the day. “It forced us to really recalibrate priorities,” she said.

Deborah Shoman is a member:
AZ Health Professional Offers Advice on Managing Return to Office Stress
Public News Service
Deborah Shoman, a licensed clinical social worker based in Phoenix, said many of us struggle with change, both positive and negative. She noted although we cannot always control stressful situations, we can control how we think about them. “We also need to focus on basic self-care, which often gets forgotten when we begin to feel overwhelmed,” Shoman pointed out. “So making sure that we go to sleep at the same time each night and get up at the same time each morning. And evaluating the need to modify that schedule if we’re not feeling rested.”

Gina Corona is a member:
Cuomo Set Out to ‘Transform’ Mental Health Care for Kids. Now They Can’t Get Treatment.
The City
“The promise was ‘We’re going to pour all this money into the community and we won’t need these beds anymore,’” said Gina Corona, a social worker who has worked at Hutchings Psychiatric Center — a state-run hospital in Syracuse — for 16 years. “Unfortunately, our community resources are not meeting the needs.” Even among the state hospital beds that officially remain open, many sit empty for months on end, Corona said, due to a staffing shortage that started before the pandemic but then grew worse.

André Harris is a member:
Bridging the Gap Between Pediatric and Adult Sickle Cell Care
Future of Personal Health
André Harris is a social work PhD student from Houston and a passionate advocate for young people with sickle cell disease (SCD). He knows all too well how hard it is to be a teen living with SCD. “I grew up in a single-parent home and my mother had to work. As a child, I had to learn about my SCD and how to navigate not only the healthcare system but the systems of transportation and social services by myself so that my mother could provide for us.”

Christopher Perri is a member:
Even in Pandemic, PCDA Puts Child First in Therapy Model
Outlook Pasadena
“We prioritize a parent-mediated or caregiver involved treatment approach, because we know that when the family is better supported, the child thrives. All of our goals are social-emotional development goals versus behavioral,” said PCDA Executive Director Christopher Perri, who took the lead at the nonprofit just weeks before the onset of closures due to COVID-19.

Deirdre Ashley is a member:
Alcohol can heighten depression
Jackson Hole News & Guide
As we head into April and spring break, along with celebrating the coming of spring it seems like a relevant time to talk about alcohol awareness. While alcohol use issues have always been a public health concern on varying levels, two years of dealing with the pandemic has certainly exacerbated the issue. More individuals are reporting coping with stress with increased substance use, the most common being alcohol.

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