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News Items – October 14, 2021

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Elijah Nealy was a member:
Elijah Nealy Obituary
The New York Times
Elijah C. Nealy, BA, MDiv, LCSW, PhD, died peacefully at his home in West Hartford, Connecticut after a difficult 18-month journey with cancer. In the loving company of his family, he took his last breath on Thursday, September 23, 2021. Based on his experiences as a therapist and former deputy executive director of New York City’s LGBT Community Center, and himself a trans man, Reverend Dr. Nealy authored the highly acclaimed, first-ever comprehensive guide to understanding, supporting, and welcoming trans kids: Transgender Children and Youth – Cultivating Pride and Joy with Families in Transition (2017).

Public Service Loan Forgiveness program being overhauled after 99% rejection rate
Fox 26 Houston
“Social workers and other public service providers would have completed five or six years of public service, and the Department would say they only had 20 payments counting toward forgiveness,” said Sarah Christa Butts, Director of Public Policy with the National Association of Social Workers. A lack of communication about the rules, or payments being even one penny off, are among the reasons thousands of social workers, teachers, military members, and government employees say they were rejected for Public Service Loan Forgiveness.

Tyreasa Washington is a member:
More than 140,000 US children lost a parent or caregiver to Covid, study finds
The Guardian
“When a child cannot live with their birth parent, almost always the preference would be to place the child with a relative,” said Tyreasa Washington, Child Trends’ senior program area director for child welfare. Family placement, known as kinship care, provides more stability and is less traumatizing for a child than putting the child with non-kin foster parents, said Washington, a clinical social worker. “Children also have better behavior and academic outcomes, and they are more likely to stay connected with their birth parents and siblings, as well as their culture,” she added.

Malka Young is a member:
Geriatric care manager shares decades of experience in new book
Now for full disclosure: I moderate Dr. Kernisan’s caregiver support community, “Helping Your Older Parents,” and it’s through my work there that I’ve witnessed the expertise and compassion shown by Linda, as well as Michelle Allen, LCSW, and Malka Young, LICSW, CCM. All three GCMs have given me permission to mention them here and have assured me that they provide virtual meetings. Each has my respect for their work as well as for who they are as people.

Jasmine McLaughlin is a member:
World Mental Health Day shines spotlight on mental health conversations
October 10 marks World Mental Health Day, which the World Health Organization classifies as a time to raise awareness about mental health issues and discussing what needs to be done to provide mental health care to everyone. The day also reminds Jasmine McLaughlin, a licensed clinical social worker and founder of Empowered to Thrive Counseling and Wellness, about the importance of mental health. “It’s just a day to recognize the importance of really taking care of our mental well-being,” she said. McLaughlin says mental health has also become the center of conversations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Anne Chambers is a member:
Coping With Stress in the Legal Profession
Legal Talk Network
Adapting and growing through stressful circumstances creates more resilient lawyers. Molly Ranns and JoAnn Hathaway get some positive tips from Anne Chambers about how lawyers can not only cope, but learn to thrive in the face of stress. Anne focuses on gratefulness, mindfulness, and self care, and encourages lawyers to alter their perspective on stressors common to the profession and see them as opportunities for growth. Anne Chambers is a licensed clinical social worker and director of the Missouri Lawyers’ Assistance Program.

Atiya Nathan is a member:
Military spouses with certifications face employment barriers when their families are relocated
Atiya Nathan said she waited five months for Mississippi to license her as a mental health therapist, even though she already had a license from Virginia. She started to panic as the clock ticked. “It’s so isolating, because you’re thinking like, ‘I have to get this license,’” she said. “I cannot work to my full capacity unless I get this license.” She filled out forms, took exams, paid fees and called the licensing board, sometimes twice a day. “Mississippi has different requirements than Virginia has, so it’s not a level playing field,” Nathan said.

Rebecca Vlam is a member
4 Ways Moms Can Prioritize Mental Health
People Magazine
Remember that the brain and the body are all attached,” says Rebecca Vlam, a licensed clinical social worker and a clinical assistant professor at Widener University in Chester, Pennsylvania. One of her goals is to help destigmatize mental health through education. “The more we normalize the fact that people go through depression, and the more we set up potential services to support people, the healthier everyone’s going to be,” she says. “And that includes the kids.”

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