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News Items – February 11, 2021

news items logo oneA Parallel Pandemic Hits Health Care Workers: Trauma and Exhaustion
The New York Times
There is no comprehensive federal government count of worker deaths. But according to a tally by Kaiser Health News and the Guardian, more than 3,300 nurses, doctors, social workers and physical therapists have died from Covid-19 since March. Experts say the death toll is most likely far higher. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention counts 1,332 deaths among medical personnel, which is striking given that its sister agency, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, lists roughly the same number of deaths just among nursing home workers — a small portion of those employed by the nation’s hospitals, health clinics and private practices.

After Capitol riot, desperate families turn to groups that ‘deprogram’ extremists
The Washington Post
Parents for Peace says it hopes a partnership with the School of Social Work at Boston College can help the group evaluate its work and eventually take on some of the workload. We need help ASAP,” said Churchill, the executive director, adding that the small organization has no more capacity to help its many callers. For now, the group can point only to individual stories.

Amanda Clayman is a member:
The first sign a couple will be able to get past money issues, from a financial therapist who’s helped over 1,000 people
Being good with money is hard enough to do on your own. For a couple, aligning values and behaviors can be a real challenge. Amanda Clayman, a licensed clinical social worker specializing in financial wellness, has had a front-row seat to hundreds of couples’ money lives over the past 15 years. Each person’s relationship with money is unique, she told Insider, and that’s often what causes friction between partners.

Tracey Lipsig Kite is a member:
How To Help Your Daughter Not Believe In Stereotypes About Boys
The first step towards changing any problem is acknowledging its existence. According to Tracey Lipsig Kite, a licensed clinical social worker with The Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, we should absolutely acknowledge the issue with stereotypes surrounding boys. If you hear or even say something that falls into one of the stereotypes about boys, point it out to your daughter. You can even say, “That’s not actually something that is true about all boys.” You can then use that moment as a learning opportunity to share what stereotypes are and how they hurt us all.

What it is Really Like to Be a Social Worker
The Good Men Project
If you have ever considered entering a social work career, then you have most likely thought about what it is really like. What does it involve? Is there a large workload? Will you regret becoming one? Becoming a social worker takes a lot of motivation, empathy, and hard work, but the outcome can be a highly satisfying career. If the idea of being a social worker is floating around your mind, but you want to find out more about it, then read on.

Cynthia Catchings is a member:
What Consistency Looks Like In Dating Relationships
Madame Noire
When it comes to dating success, the experts will often tell you that consistency is key, but it is not often explained why consistency is so important. In an interview with TalkSpace, licensed clinical social worker Cynthia Catchings shared that while the chemistry that may exist between you and a potential partner can feel great, chemistry is ultimately not going to be what carries the relationship for the long haul. Consistency, however, can.

Kate Brayton is a member:
Crime victims to receive enhanced support from Vermont State Police with new federal grant award
The Newport Daily Express
This position complements the state police’s victim services director, Kate Brayton, who works directly with the Major Crime Unit and focuses primarily on homicide cases. “We’re excited to be able to build out and expand our victim services,” said Brayton, a licensed independent clinical social worker (LICSW). “In the immediate aftermath of a crime, before the apprehension of a suspect and the availability of victim support services through prosecutors’ offices, crime victims may have difficulty accessing the resources they need. The creation of this new position fills a long-acknowledged gap, especially in cases that are investigated over a period of weeks, months or years.”

Fran Duane is a member:
Mental health resources scarce in Brazos Valley
The Eagle (Bryan, TX)
Fran Duane, a clinical social worker in private practice who is also a Bryan school board member, said in an interview, “cost is your number one barrier to any care.” Duane noted that many who try to access care — or who find themselves in a behavioral health crisis — lack the ability to pay for services. She said the area needs acute care facilities for people in a variety of financial situations.

A Legacy of Social Justice
Rhode Island College
Social workers are the epitome of the phrase “I am my brother’s [or sister’s] keeper” no matter your national, racial, ethnic, economic, gender or ideological differences, and they continue today to engage in social and political action, particularly with and on behalf of vulnerable and oppressed people. Widely recognized in Rhode Island and throughout southeastern New England as a center of excellence in education, training and advocacy, RIC’s School of Social Work has within its mission statement a commitment to “social and economic justice in accordance with the NASW Code of Ethics.” Over the years, faculty have shown what that looks like on the ground.

Michelle Mouhtis is a member:
7 Ways To Have More Mindful Sex (And Why You Should ASAP)
Women’s Health
It’s time to take that mindfulness practice you’ve been honing (right? right!) between the sheets… Think of mindful sex like “flipping a switch on all five of your senses” as you work to expand all the jaw-dropping ways you can explore your partner, says Michelle Mouhtis, LCSW, a therapist and relationship coach based in New Jersey.

Yudelka Columna is a member:
Bilingual Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Single Mother of Three Yudelka Columna Releases New Book to Help Others Find Their Why
Digital Journal
An immigrant from the Dominican Republic, Yudelka Columna, came to the United States with big dreams and hoped to find a better life for her and her children. Working long hours to get her Master’s Degree in Social Work in a foreign country without any support, Columna knew things would be hard but necessary, and now she wants to teach you how she did it. In her book, Emotional Resilience: Practical Solutions For Overcoming Challenges to Thrive in Life, Columna shares 12 practical steps that allowed her to become resilient and helped her flourish amidst the chaos and hardships that came her way.

Samantha Fletcher is executive director of NASW-NYS:
New York may license social workers to handle some legal tasks
ABA Journal
Samantha Fletcher, executive director of the National Association of Social Workers—New York State Chapter, says there are a number of issues the courts would need to work through before implementing such a program, with licensing being chief among them. She highlights that social workers’ licenses prescribe their scope of practice, and they could not go beyond those boundaries even if they were trained and certified by the court system to do so.

Paula Zerfoss is a member:
Dating apps and COVID-19: what does virtual romance mean for relationships?
The Blue Banner
Paula Zerfoss, a licensed clinical social worker and couples therapist in Asheville, said dating relationships have changed depending on if people met before or during the pandemic. The couples therapist said she sees people rushing relationships because of the quarantine and it leads to positive or negative outcomes for couples. “Because of the suddenness in which everyone had to go inside, you know — indoors, people were forced into making decisions that they likely would not have made until maybe a year or two years down the road,” she said.

Allan Schwartz is a member:
How national trauma endorses theories, not facts
The Orion (CSU, Chico)
Before 2016, Licensed Clinical Social Worker Allan Schwartz, who has a master’s in mental health and clinical social work, said on, “It’s important to fight paranoid thinking by reminding ourselves that all we have to do is vote.” Oh, if only Schwartz would have known what he was saying at the time. But, Schwartz was right about the need for objective thinking.

Roxroy Reid is a member:
Pandemic amplifies sleep loss
Albuquerque Journal
Dr. Shanna Diaz, medical director of the Sleep Disorder Centers at of the University of New Mexico Hospital, says the COVID-19 pandemic has more people experiencing insomnia and increasing numbers taking sleep medications. Roxroy Reid of Bosque Mental Health recommends cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia: “Change your thinking, change your behavior.”

Donna Goings is a member:
New call for teacher vaccinations before returning to classroom
“Think of it as a car, you wouldn’t put your child in an unsafe car before fixing it… please fund and help us get back,” said Donna Goings, a clinical social worker with SCS.  School leaders said vaccinations are necessary for teachers before heading back. An SCS survey showed 4,600 of the district’s 6,000 teachers are willing to get the vaccine.

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