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News Items – December 2, 2021

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Sinema gets thumbs down from students in petition to terminate her ASU contract
Graduate students in ASU’s School of Social Work have started a petition asking the University to terminate Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s teaching contract. The petition argues Sinema has violated the National Association of Social Workers’ Code of Ethics and shouldn’t be a lecturer at the School of Social Work. Sinema currently teaches two graduate classes at the school: legal issues in social work and developing grants and fund raising. According to The State Press salary database, Sinema is paid $26,860 a year as a University lecturer.

Amber Kelly is a member:
Police departments respond to survey about working with social workers
“My concern is you’re going to have competing sense of what’s going to happen next and then the police officer and social worker may even be at odds,” said Amber Kelly, associate professor of social work at Quinnipiac University. Kelly works with several community groups in New Haven. She said a collaboration could be tricky. “What I have heard from community members is that as soon as you show up with police, you are the police. It doesn’t matter whether you have a uniform on or not,” Kelly said. The Connecticut Chapter of The National Association of Social Workers agrees that there could be some obstacles, but recommends all police departments have access to social workers.

Shari Nacson is a member:
‘No one advocating for them’: The stories of Ohioans who helped immigrants detained in Youngstown
Mahoning Matters
Shari Nacson, a clinical social worker from Cleveland, interviewed and evaluated asylum seekers at the privately operated prison. In 2018, there wore more than 200 immigrants detained there, according to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The prison had the capacity for more than 300 that year. Salupo and Nacson’s stories were featured in the Ohio Immigration Alliance’s new book “Far From Their Eyes: Ohio Migration Anthology,” which showcases paintings, poems, essays and short stories from Ohioans who have worked with migrants.

Peter Slom and Ric Reamer are members:
Gov. McKee names first formerly incarcerated person to RI Parole Board
The Providence Journal
Rhode Island College Prof. Fredric Reamer remembers when Peter Slom came before the Parole Board in 1992, some 26 months into his six-year sentence for dealing cocaine. “I clearly remember being impressed with his insight, his grasp of the circumstances that led to his arrest and incarceration,” said Reamer, a longtime Parole Board member. “He had thought through what he had determined to do with his life,” Reamer continued.

School-age children are seeking out mental health care more than ever
CT Mirror
Although getting more mental health resources out to local school districts and surrounding communities is a priority, mental health professionals also wonder if schools have enough staff to address the needs of students. “Some schools have just one worker in schools or a social worker with 800 kids in a school,” said Steve Wanczyk-Karp, executive director of Connecticut’s National Association of Social Workers chapter. “So it’s really stressful for our school social workers, but they all find creative ways to deal with this.”

Michaela Jens is a member:
A Polk County jail whistleblower’s $65K settlement
Axios Des Moines
A Polk County Jail social worker fired last year after criticizing how the facility handled COVID-19 restrictions was awarded $65,000 in a settlement approved last week by the Board of Supervisors. Why it matters: Michaela Jens alleged her termination was retaliatory. Of note: At least 89 inmates and nine staffers had tested positive for the virus, according to county data released two days after Jens was discharged. Flashback: Jens was hired in early 2020 as an employee of Wellpath, a company contracted to provide medical and behavioral health care services in the jail.

‘I have not seen it like this’: Shortage of foster homes in Idaho reaches crisis point
East Idaho News
Delmar Stone, executive director and lobbyist for the Idaho chapter of the National Association of Social Workers, said the job has always been stressful for this area of social work, but the stress has become too much for many caseworkers. “We have never done a very good job of taking care of social workers who do that kind of work, for sure, and what we are seeing in Idaho is a lot of burnout that frankly I have not seen,” Stone said. “I’ve been the executive director since 2006, and I have not seen it like this before.” Stone said in the past three months, four case management supervisors in Boise have quit.

Timothy Swanson is a member:
Holiday season not ‘the most wonderful time of the year’ for everyone
While the holidays are known for being a joyful season, many find this time of year incredibly taxing on their mental health. A study by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) found 64% of people with mental illness report holidays make their conditions worse. Mental Health Professionals like Timothy Swanson say the pandemic has exacerbated the issue. “It’s a very concerning time,” said Swanson, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Addiction Counselor in Colorado Springs.

Chamin Ajjan is a member:
Understanding The Mother Wound, The Intergenerational Pain Women Inherit
Mind Body Green
While mothers are often seen as eternal stewards of consummate guidance and unwavering support, a mother’s identity is always much more complex than that. As women, mothers live in a deeply misogynistic world, and if those toxic messages haven’t been worked out of their belief system, they may inadvertently pass down these burdens to their children. This matrilineal pain is sometimes called the mother wound.

North Dakota lawmakers okay regulation banning Conversion Therapy
The Los Angeles Blade
The West Hollywood based Trevor Project, the world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people, had worked with Democratic House Minority Leader Rep. Josh Boschee, the National Association of Social Workers ND Chapter, the North Dakota Human Rights Coalition, and local advocates like Elizabeth Loos to advance these critical protections for LGBTQ youth.

Tina Maschi is a member:
[Audio] Aging Behind Prison Walls
Fordham Conversations host Robin Shannon sits down with Tina Maschi, PhD, LCSW, ACSW Professor, Fordham University Graduate School of Social Service. She is the lead author of Aging Behind Prison Walls: Studies in Trauma and Resilience. In it, Maschi addresses the challenges, issues and successes of incarcerated elders.

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