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News Items – January 28, 2020

news items logo oneMary Garrison is a member:
5 questions with … Mary Garrison, professor of social work at Millikin University
Herald & Review (Decatur, IL)
You have over 25 years of experience in the field of social work and advocacy, especially in the area of mental health and homelessness. What made you want to be so dedicated to a career in social work? The relationships with people. My career as both a clinical social worker and professor has allowed me to create wonderful relationships with many people and to support, guide, teach, mentor and provide therapeutic interventions for many. My work focuses on these issues at the national, state and local levels including working with the National Association of Social Workers, Kennedy Forum Illinois, Macon County Continuum of Care, the Good Samaritan and several others.

Robin DeLuca-Acconi is a member:
Robin DeLuca-Acconi Teaches Human Rights
Stony Brook University News
Working tirelessly to support the mission of prominent human rights defenders — Malala Yousafzai, Elie Wiesel, Van Jones, et al. — are thousands of social workers who shape policy and curriculum at the ground level. As Stony Brook University Assistant Dean of Student Services in the School of Social Welfare, Robin DeLuca-Acconi, PhD, is one of those. DeLuca-Acconi has been a clinical instructor faculty member since 2015, and has written curriculum for the Bachelor of Social Work and Master of Social Work programs here.

Shara Kaszovitz is a member:
After decades, Pillowcase Rapist victims finally have hope for justice, and healing
Miami Herald
“One of the ways people avoid is not reading the news, or social media. That can bring back a lot of feelings and a lot of people don’t get help until years later,” said Shara Kaszovitz, a licensed clinical social worker at Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Roxcy Bolton Rape Treatment Center. “They avoid it, and then something will trigger them and all of those feelings come back.” Kaszovitz stressed that the rape treatment center offers free counseling and support groups for victims, even ones from decades ago. “It’s never too late to get support,” she said.

Susan Valoff is a member:
Battling the loneliness
The Guam Daily Post
Susan Valoff, a licensed clinical social worker and vice president at Windward Life Care, a San Diego geriatric-health consulting service, said her experience with clients dovetails in some ways with the study’s conclusions. “You can live amongst other people and still feel lonely,” she said. “It can be a rude awakening for some people when they move into a facility. They are used to being in their own homes, setting their own schedules, and now someone else is making the decisions. The loss of control contributes to loneliness.”

Pearlie Hodges is a member:
Fayetteville home to open for victims of human trafficking
The Fayetteville Observer
Next weekend, Pearlie Hodges will open a home for women who have been victimized in human trafficking. It is called Life Matters Residential. Hodges, who is a clinical social worker and therapist, says the idea first came to her in the fall of 2017 when she taught a class in social work for a semester at Fayetteville State University. “We kept coming back to human trafficking during the course of the semester,” she says. “One evening, I told students, ‘We’re just going to sit and plan a program, develop a program for human trafficking victims, a nonprofit.’

Tab Ballis is a member:
Documentary on LGBTQ woman disemboweled 30 years ago to premiere in February
WECT (Wilmington, NC)
Tab Ballis, the producer of the documentary, has been working on the Park View Project for 15 years. He says he was inspired to do it because no one else would and he thought it was a story that needed to be told. “I just felt compelled,” says Ballis. “I heard this story in 1990 like many people. Once you hear it, you can’t unhear it and so I have felt compelled to make sure this story gets told.” Ballis, who is a clinical social worker, says it’s important to have an open dialogue about crimes committed against LGBTQ people since North Carolina’s hate crime statute does not cover sexual orientation or gender identity.

CMS needs hundreds of social workers to meet national standards. Can county afford them?
The Charlotte Observer
After securing nearly $5.6 million in county funding, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools hired 25 new social workers for the 2019-2020 academic year — and the district is looking to hire 30 additional mental-health professionals, including counselors and psychologists. But once those positions are filled, CMS will still lack hundreds of staff members who are needed to adequately address social and emotional learning.

Will Francis, executive director of NASW-TX, is one of the co-authors:
Texas Must Support an Inclusive Child Welfare System
University of Texas News
The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston recently joined the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services in filing a federal lawsuit challenging a rule that prohibits taxpayer-funded foster care and adoption agencies from discriminating based on a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity. We should be troubled by anything that would remove protections for an already vulnerable class of young people. And, perhaps more importantly, we should fear the possibility of further reducing the state’s already scarce pool of foster families.

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