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News Items – December 18, 2012

Digital Savant: Grieving increasingly being expressed and supported online
Austin American-Statesman
“Grief can be isolating for people,” said Barbara Jones, an associate professor and co-director of the Institute for Grief, Loss and Family Survival at the University of Texas at Austin’s School of Social Work. “Using the web to memorialize someone you care about means that your grief is seen and witnessed by others. The person you cared about is still virtually living in some way.”

A Tense Compromise on Defining Disorders
The New York Times
“This was just astonishing, that they would eliminate the exclusion, and a distortion of the research on the subject,” said Jerome Wakefield, a professor of social work and psychiatry at New York University, who did not work on the manual.

Children of unemployed parents in Louisiana up more than 45 percent since 2007
The New Orleans Times-Picayune
The number of children in Louisiana who are living with unemployed parents has grown by more than 45 percent over pre-recession levels, a recent Urban Institute study found. Before the Great Recession, in Louisiana there were 48,600 children living with unemployed parents in 2007; in 2012, there are 70,600 children, the report said.

Internet Use in Adoptions Cuts 2 Ways, Report Says
The New York Times
Linda Spears, the vice president for policy and public affairs for the Child Welfare League of America, said that she had not seen the report, but that “it tracks with conversations that we have had with people around the country.”

Veteran and fledgling social worker pushes outreach beyond the vet (blog)
It’s a glad time, in many ways, for Shad Thomas, an Oregon National Guard combat veteran. The holidays are coming and, this week, he will graduate from the University of Southern California with a master’s degree in social work.

Social work students send sympathy cards to Newtown
ABC2 News
It’s a busy week for students at University of Maryland’s school of social work. Between finals and study sessions, students are taking the time to send their sympathy to Sandy Hook. After Friday’s shooting in Newtown, Connecticut , student groups changed their plans for today’s annual holiday gathering. What was slated as a special holiday lunch to give students a break from studying became something much more.

Stephanie Ross, Fla. case worker, stabbed to death by patient during home visit, police say
CBS News
“It may be if the risk is too high you don’t send two people out, you ask the client to come in or meet in a different place or postpone the visit,” Tracy Whitaker, of the National Association of Social Workers, told The Associated Press. “Unfortunately, the money gets found after there’s a tragedy.”

Fiscal Cliffs in Higher Education
The Huffington Post
Two economics professors walk into a bar. One says, “to avoid financial disaster, focus on job creation and staying competitive in the global marketplace.” The other says, “raise taxes for corporations.” I truly wish there was a joke in there, but the political divide just doesn’t have a funny side.

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