COVID-19 Resources

The State of Washington hosts a clearinghouse

for COVID-19 related information at

www.coronavirus.wa.gov

NASW national hosts a page full of information

related to Coronavirus (COVID-19) resources for

social workers at:

https://www.socialworkers.org/Practice/Infectious-Diseases/Coronavirus

 

 

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Tell Us What You Think! NASW-WA Seeks Member Feedback 

 

Washington State Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW-WA) is a membership organization with a dual mission of enhancing the profession of social work and promoting diversity, inclusion and social justice. Over the last several months, the NASW-WA Membership Engagement Committee created a survey to gather information from our membership. Please take a few minutes to provide your Chapter leadership feedback about:

 

  • Continuing education preferences

  • Methods to promote connections

  • Support and representation in your professional life

 

Your feedback is important: Survey information that you provide will help inform and guide the activities and opportunities to meet Washingtonian social workers' needs during this unique time and space. Your responses are confidential and will be used by Chapter volunteer leadership and staff to develop an agenda for improving our commitment to the social work profession and our local communities.

 

Please click here to take the survey and provide feedback to NASW-WA.

 

We want to hear from you! Thank you for taking a moment to provide your input.

Jeremy Arp, MSW, ACSW

Executive Director

National Association of Social Workers - Washington Chapter

jarp.naswwa@socialworkers.org

www.nasw-wa.org

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Welcome Jeremy Arp!

We are excited to announce Jeremy Arp as the NASW-

Washington State Chapter’s Executive Director! 

The Board of Directors of the National Association of Social

Workers-Washington State Chapter is very pleased to

announce that Jeremy Arp will serve as the full time Chapter's

Executive Director, effective July 1, 2020!

 

Jeremy moved to Washington from Arizona in 2019. His

professional background includes positions with the State of

Washington, 8 years (2011-2018) as Executive Director for the NASW-Arizona Chapter, and service to the Arizona Governor’s Office administering grants and initiatives to enhance community responses to sexual and domestic violence and protections for immigrant victims of crime and their families. He taught social work policy and services as adjunct faculty for Arizona State University and the College of St. Scholastica (Mesa, Arizona campus).

 

Jeremy is a proud graduate of the Arizona State University School of Social Work, having earned a BSW and MSW (with a focus on policy/planning, administration and community practice). He is a past-president of the Arizona Society of Association Executives and a past board member for the Protecting Arizona Families Coalition, an advocacy organization that influenced public policy priorities for the betterment of health and human service funding for vulnerable communities.

 

He looks forward to serving the Washington Chapter as we continue to work to enhance the profession of social work and promote diversity, inclusion, and social justice during challenging times ahead.

 

Jeremy Arp will be a terrific addition and will allow us to continue to add value to NASW-WA Chapter services that you depend on.

 

Please join us in welcoming Jeremy to his new role with our chapter.

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Letter to Members: Policy Action Against Police Brutality

Dear NASW-WA Members,

To follow up on NASW-WA’s promise to pursue a more just society and create policy change in Washington state, we wanted to make a statement about the recent executive order put out by the president. NASW-WA believes that the order signed by the president on 06/17/2020 is a dreadfully inadequate attempt at whitewashing police reform and does not address the underlying causes of systemic racism in our country. The president was very open about his listening to police union voices over the voices of those who have felt the devastating effects of systemic oppression for over 400 years in this country.

 

NASW-WA believes that in order to achieve a truly just society, we must take much more decisive and drastic action. NASW-WA does not endorse NASW National’s apparent satisfaction with the executive order by the president, and we are disappointed that there has been little more done by National to push the White House to do more.

 

In order to further change in our own state, action from our members is needed. Given that NASW-WA’s primary advocacy role is with the state government, we find it necessary to seek out the voices of our members in individual communities around our state to advocate for change at the local level. You know your own communities most intimately AND know what it will take to make your local communities safe for EVERYONE, not just white residents.

 

With that, we ask your help in reaching out to your local municipal and county governments. NASW-WA seeks to lift up the voices of our black brothers and sisters, and to adopt the platforms for change that have been formally announced by organizations such as Not This Time, Black Lives Matter, and others. In doing so, we ask that you organize and advocate for the following NASW-WA endorsed policy changes in local police/law enforcement agencies:

 

● Reallocating funds within police budgets to add social workers and other

mental health professionals on the front lines;

● Making mandatory that there are an adequate number of social workers

embedded into every local law enforcement agency’s budget;

● Adopting an “exhaust all other options” policy when responding to 911 calls in the community;

● Enhancing mandatory crisis de-escalation training;

● Adding mandatory implicit bias training;

● Banning chokeholds;

● Banning “knee to neck” techniques;

● Creating a independently managed state registry for officer misconduct;

mandating all law enforcement agencies to search this registry before hiring any candidate; supporting due process for officers against whom complaints are filed

● Creating a process to decertify officers who are repeatedly found to have

committed misconduct

● Eliminating qualified immunity for officers and other police department

employees;

● Establishing independent inspectors general to conducts routine audits and

oversight of local law enforcement agencies;

● Banning the use of tear gas, other chemical irritants, rubber bullets, and flash-bang and other

explosive devices during protests and demonstrations;

● Creating a civilian led Office of Professional Responsibility that investigates

individual complaints against police; and

● Re-examining education requirements for officers to ensure the police

academies better prepare officers as community oriented and social justice minded.

 

Please reach out to your local authorities, and you may use the following message template:

 _____________________________________

 

Address of local government office you are writing to

 

Dear [Councilmember, Mayor, other local authority],

 

My name is [insert name] and I am a constituent of yours. I am also a member of the National Association of Social Workers, Washington State Chapter. As a social worker, I believe all people deserve to feel safe in our communities and treated with human dignity. I find the continued impact of systemic racism and police brutality on our communities of color to be a violation of these tenants and unacceptable. I demand the following changes to address systemic racism and police brutality in our community:

[insert policies of your choice from above]

[insert any other statements you would like to make as a constituent]

Your actions on these matters will weigh heavily on my decision when I cast my ballot in all future elections.

 

Sincerely,

[Insert Name, Credentials]

_____________________________________

 

Thank you all for your ongoing efforts in pursuit of equality and justice for everyone. Each member is so valuable in the promotion of human dignity in our society. Make sure your voice is heard. NASW-WA will be continuing to make our voices heard at the state level to ensure accountability of our state leaders to administer policies that uphold human dignity and social safety nets, while ensuring the safety that all Washingtonians deserve to feel in their communities.

 

Sincerely,

NASW-WA Chapter Legislative Action Committee

Garrett Hebel, MSW, LSWAIC, SUDP, Chair

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Lethal Force Against People of Color Must Stop

Social Work is rooted in human rights, social justice, and respect for diversity. It is with this lens that the Washington Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers condemns the latest in a long series of police killings – the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis at the hands of police officers -- and hopes to contribute to the work of both healing and of bending the long arc of the moral universe, as Dr. Martin Luther King noted, toward justice.

 

Many people across Washington are protesting Floyd’s death, mostly peacefully. But, pent up anger and rage in communities of color are understandable, and should not be the focus going forward. Instead, we need – and NASW-WA pledges – to work toward systemic change to address baked-in, systemic racism that causes unnecessary pain, suffering and death in communities of color.

 

Yes, economic loss from a small number of people who attach themselves to legitimate protests can be painful. But it is far from the pain caused by the loss of life and liberty that disproportionally falls on our brothers and sisters of color.

 

No mother should have to fear that her black son will not come home because he has been killed by police while simply living his life like any other American. No wife should have to fear her brown husband will die while simply jogging. No one should have to fear they will be shot and killed in their own home while doing nothing wrong, simply because they are not white.

 

And we cannot let the current outrage at the death of Mr. Floyd dissipate. We must continue to work to change the systems that allow this to happen.

 

Our chapter supported stronger police accountability laws championed by Not This Time. We have worked to help alleviate the poverty often caused by systemic racism and an inability to participate in society. We continue to call for economic and housing justice, in addition to equitable access to quality, affordable healthcare in this time of pandemic and quarantine. Furthermore, we will advance the call for social workers to examine our own implicit biases and call out racial bias and micro-aggressions in the administration of healthcare across our state. Our brothers and sisters from minority communities deserve to feel safe both receiving and providing the healthcare they access. 

 

In short, we want and strive for a more just society where we don’t have to mourn the deaths of people such as George Floyd, Philando Castile, Botham Jean, Breonna Taylor, Eric Garner, Michael Brown or hundreds of other people of color who died because of actions of police and our government.

 

As Social Workers, we pledge to do what we can with the skills we have to address mental health needs, social and economic needs, and to work for the political changes necessary to create a more just society.  

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Black Lives Matter

We stand in solidarity with Black social workers who continue

to provide essential mental health services to their clients and

communities. We stand in solidarity with Black social workers

who heal trauma and provide hope for Black clients and Black

families. We stand in solidarity with Black social workers, who

are organizing their friends, families, communities, and the

public to advocate for Black lives. We stand in solidarity with

Black social workers who are social justice warriors, fighting for

their own futures, and the future for our children. We stand in

solidarity with Black social workers.

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