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News Items – August 25, 2022

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Governor Baker Signs Legislature’s Expansive Mental Health Bill
HCAM Television
“On behalf of the National Association of Social Workers – MA Chapter, we are thrilled this landmark mental health legislation has been signed into law,” said Rebekah Gewirtz, Executive Director of NASW-MA. “We are especially encouraged that the new interagency health equity team will work to support a more diverse behavioral health workforce that represents communities served and that will better ensure culturally competent care. Passage of this law will go a long way to improving the quality of life for all Massachusetts residents at a time of such acute and pressing need for critical behavioral healthcare services.”

Haylin Dennison is a member:
Mental Health Tips For the 2022 School Year with Haylin Dennison (LCSW)
Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) Haylin Dennison offers services to Hawaii’s youth preparing for the 2022 school year. Known for her approaches in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Family and Marital Therapy, and Acceptance and Commitment therapy, LCSW Haylin Dennison provides a variety of services to those seeking guidance. “The most valuable thing I learned from being a therapist is that it’s a balance between mind, body and soul. My goal is to support the health and well-being of Hawaii’s people,” says Haylin Dennison, LCSW.

Susan Stephens
Helping Students Cope with Cancer in the Family
When a student’s parent, sibling or other key figure in their life has cancer, school attendance and performance, social relationships and behavior can all be impacted. Families coping with a cancer diagnosis often face a wide range of challenges and concerns, and supporting children and teens through this process can be a daunting task. Susan Stephens, MSW, LCSW, OSW-C and Jennifer Boughton, MSW, LCSW, social workers at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, the state’s only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center together with RWJBarnanabs Health, offer expert advice on helping help your child cope during the upcoming school year.

Christine Stoner-Mertz is a member:
Opinion: Most Vulnerable Foster Youth Left Behind in State Budget
California Health Report
Foster youth succeed when placed with loving families trained by foster family agencies or in short-term therapeutic programs. Without funding to enable these community-based organizations to keep up with soaring costs of staffing and operations, California will lose capacity to deliver these life-saving therapeutic programs. Today’s foster youth will bear the cost of that decision, facing potential homelessness, incarceration or dropping out of school.  These impacts will ultimately be far more costly to California communities than the price of ensuring that foster youth are adequately taken care of when they enter the child welfare system.

Carver School of Social Work was a victim of American fundamentalism, authors explain
Baptist News Global
After being fired at Southern Seminary, Garland went on to became the founding dean of Baylor University’s School of Social Work for a decade before her premature death in 2015. That school now is named in her memory. Southern Seminary closed the Carver School in 1997. Both Garland and the Carver School of Church Social Work she headed at Southern Seminary were victims of conservative distrust of social work ministry as a whole, Maxwell said. “Social ministry efforts, which Southern Baptists had undertaken to some degree throughout their history, were questioned as denominational leaders feared that liberal influences had tainted them. But this controversy clearly resulted from, and was paradigmatic of, the broader conflict between moderates and conservatives in the SBC.”

Tanya Greathouse is a member:
The fight against fentanyl
RED (MSU Denver)
Assistant Professor Tanya Greathouse, Ph.D., said the Department of Social Work provides micro, mezzo and macro initiatives to engage students on the fentanyl crisis and other societal issues. On the micro level, students participate in field courses infused with addictions curriculum and get hands-on experience through internships at Denver Health and other community partners.

Lourdes Dolores Follin is a member:
Why being resilient might matter less than you think
You’re so resilient – and then that face. So in addition to thinking up witty retorts, I wondered what it really means to be resilient. Well, the American Psychological Association defines it as, quote, “the process and outcome of successfully adapting to difficult or changing life experiences, especially through mental, emotional and behavioral flexibility and adjustment to external and internal demands.” To put it another way… LOURDES DOLORES FOLLINS: When we’re talking about resilience, it’s a psychological term. So we’re talking about a process that involves adapting positively in the context of significant adversity.

Athena Diesch-Chham is a member:
Don’t Ignore Conflict on the Farm
Pork Business
Conflict. Everyone wants to avoid it, but experts say that’s never a good move. Basic human needs feed into conflict all the time, says Athena Diesch-Chham, a farm girl and now a clinical social worker and owner of Restorative Path Counseling and Wellbeing. Sometimes conflict can be addressed by answering these important questions. 1.    Have we gotten the nutrition we need?
2.    Are we staying hydrated?
3.    Are we taking breaks?
4.    Do we have the opportunity to connect with people who are important to us outside of work and in work?
5.    Do we feel valued?


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