Advocating for Macro Social Work: ACOSA turns 30 in 2017!

Thursday December 15th is ACOSA night at #MacroSW Twitter Chats

Chat Transcript 

By Rachel L. West
ACOSA Board Member

The Association for Community Organization and Social Administration (ACOSA) is a membership organization for community organizers, activists, field instructors, community builders, policy practitioners, students, and educators. Since its formation in 1987, it has promoted teaching, research, and social work in the area of community practice by accomplishing the following:

  • Hosting a website for community practice curriculum material, event announcements, Special Commission resources; actions from the field, and student viewpoints;
  • Establishing and operating the Journal of Community Practice;
  • Soliciting and reviewing proposals for the community practice track at CSWE’s Annual Program Meeting;
  • Recognizing emerging scholars, contributions to the field, and lifetime achievement in community practice with its awards; and
  • Supporting the establishment of Macro Social Work Student Network chapters.

The Special Commission to Advance Macro Practice in Social Work (SC) was formed in 2013 to address the low percent of all MSW students enrolled a macro concentration/specialization, and limited macro content in many BSW and MSW programs. “20 in 2020” is one of the initiates undertaken by the commission. The goal is to have enrollment in a macro concentration or method up to 20% of all social work graduate students country-wide by the year 2020. SC has now partnered with ACOSA; SC materials are posted on the ACOSA website.

As part of its 30th anniversary, ACOSA will be conducting a strategic visioning session in June. This chat will give you the opportunity to learn more about ACOSA and the Special Commission and contribute your ideas to how this professional association might lead in the future.

The Chat starts at 9:00 PM EST/6:00 PM PST. I will be hosting (@poliSW) and will be joined by incoming ACOSA Chair Rebecca Sanders.

Questions:

  1. What concerns do you have about the current state of social work macro practice?
  2. What can be done to strengthen macro practice?
  3. Are you a member of ACOSA? If not, why not? What would draw you in?
  4. Were you aware of the Special Commission? Have you seen the materials it has produced?
  5. Looking ahead, what should be ACOSA’s top priorities?

Resources:

The ACOSA website

Get Out the Vote 11/3/16

By Rachel L. West, LMSW

Thursday November 3rd #MacroSW Chats will cover get out the vote efforts. I (@poliSW) will host the chat starting at 9:00 PM EST/6:00 PM PST.

The chat will delve into specific actions we can take to get voters to the polls on November 8th. We will also discuss long term efforts that can be taken to increase voter participation.

same-day-reg

Questions:

Q1: What GOTV efforts are you undertaking this year?

Q2: What action can be taken to reform campaign finance?

Q3: What are your ideas to positively reform the electoral process?

early-voting

Resources:

N.A. (N.D). FairVote. Retrieved from http://www.fairvote.org/.

N.A. (N.D). Voting Reform Agenda. Brennen Center for Justice. Retrieved from https://www.brennancenter.org/issues/voting-reform-agenda.

N.A. (N.D.) Yes on 5 More Voice. Retrieved from http://www.rcvmaine.com/faq.

Theroux, K. (2008). Strengthening U.S. Democracy Through Campaign Finance Reform. Carnegie Corporation of New York. Retrieved from  https://www.carnegie.org/media/filer_public/4b/5e/4b5e1520-7c54-40e3-92da-99eb2b528552/ccny_creview_2008_reform.pdf.

Breaking Down Advocacy Silos to Strengthen Macro-Level Change

Read the chat summary on Storify here.

Social Workers & Community Psychologists, Allies from Intersecting Domains

With pressing social issues and conflicts around the globe regularly calling out for intelligent, effective, and compassion solutions, the need for greater cooperation among diverse disciplines in the fields of community-related work is stronger now more than ever. Fostering interdisciplinary collaborations can go a long way in creating the macro-level societal change that impacts those issues. But as can be the case in academic fields of discourse, professionals hunker down in their “advocacy silos” (in the scientific professional, this can be called “stovepiping”) not aware of the larger context of other related fields and their resources, their interdependent relationships, and the great potential for healthful, societally beneficial collaboration.

Two fields in particular — community psychology and macro social work — share overlapping values and each field has unique talents and resources that they can share. How are the practices of macro social work and community psychology similar yet distinct? What can social workers and community psychologists do to collaborate for macro-level social change? Join us for a Twitter chat on Thursday, July 21, 9-10 p.m. EDT, for a discussion on these and other questions and related topics, including sharing of resources, practices, and research across these disciplines that are at the intersection of social change and working toward greater community well-being.

Hosts

Rachel L. West (@poliSW), L.M.S.W., Advocacy & Community Outreach Consultant, ACOSA (@acosaorg) Board Member, & Instructor at Stony Brook University-School of Social Welfare

Peter Charles Benedict, M.A. (@petebenedict), Outreach and Communications Specialist, Society for Community Research and Action (@scra)

Taylor Scott (@jtaybscott), Administrative Coordinator, Society for Community Research and Action

Special Guests

Jean Hill , Ph.D. (@jeanhillnm), SCRA Past President, and Director of Institutional Research, New Mexico Highlands University

James R. Cook, Ph.D. (@jimcookuncc), SCRA Past President, and Professor of Psychology, The University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Questions we will consider in this twitter chat

— What is community psychology and how is it distinct yet similar to social work?

— What are the primary goals and motivations of community psychology?

— What resources (practices, research, etc.) does community psychology offer?

— What resources does macro social work offer?

— What questions do you have about either community psychology or macro social work?

— How can social workers and community psychologists better work together to share resources and collaborate?

— What were some good collaborations you were a part of, and what were the benefits?

— What types of circumstances have you found yourself in that would have benefited from a collaboration, and if it didn’t happen, then why not?

Resources

What is Community Psychology?

Check out a brief VIDEO that describes community psychology. You can find additional information on the website for the Society for Community Research and Action (SCRA), which describes CP research, training programs, and includes information on and relevant resources. Also find SCRA on Twitter (@scra), Facebook, and LinkedIn.

What is Macro Social Work?

The Association for Community Organization and Social Administration

The Society for Community Research and Action (@scra), a division of the American Psychological Association, is an 1,100-member professional organization devoted to advancing community research and social action, and it also serves and supports many different disciplines engaged in community work. SCRA members are committed to promoting health and empowerment and to preventing problems in communities, groups, and individuals. SCRA’s vision is to have a strong, global impact on enhancing well-being and promoting social justice for all people by fostering collaboration where there is division and empowerment where there is oppression. Learn more at scra27.org.

Get Out the Vote

An edited chat transcript for this chat can be found here.

By Rachel L. West, LMSW

With the general election just seven months I thought it would be a good idea to explore the role social workers can play in voter outreach.

The NASW Code of Ethics states that:

Social workers should facilitate informed participation by the public in shaping social policies and institutions.

This Thursday’s chat will focus on Getting out the vote. We will cover voter education and voter registration. This includes a discussion of barriers faced by oppressed populations.

In addition to using the #MacroSW hashtag we will also be using #PoliticsNow tag. The chat starts at 9:00 PM EDT / 6:00 PM PDT.

Resources:

Video: How to Register People at a Clinic or Anywhere

DEFENDING DEMOCRACY: CONFRONTING MODERN BARRIERS TO VOTING RIGHTS IN AMERICA

Questions:

Q1: Those of you who have attempted to register clients what have you experienced? ie: what barriers from administration have you encountered? What was the response from clients?

Q2: For those of you who have advocated for voter registration in the work place, what was the argument you made?

Q3: Have/do you work at an organization that provides voter education; such as a voter’s guide or meet the candidate’s event.

Q4: What are some barriers to voting that the communities we serve might face?

Q4a: As social workers, what methods can we use to decrease/eradicate these barriers?

Links to State Board of Elections:

Alabama Louisiana Ohio
Alaska Maine Oklahoma
Arizona Maryland Oregon
Arkansas Massachusetts Pennsylvania
California Michigan Rhode Island
Colorado Minnesota South Carolina
Connecticut Mississippi South Dakota
Delaware Missouri Tennessee
Florida Montana Texas
Georgia Nebraska Utah
Hawaii Nevada Vermont
Idaho New Hampshire Virginia
Illinois New Jersey Washington
Indiana New Mexico West Virginia
Iowa New York Wisconsin
Kansas North Carolina Wyoming
Kentucky North Dakota

 

Photo Credit: Joebeone at the English language Wikipedia [CC BY 2.5 , GFDL  or CC-BY-SA-3.0 ], from Wikimedia Commons

The Key to Macro Change

Read the chat transcript here

By Rachel L. West

The next #MacroSW Twitter Chat will take place on December 10th at 9:00 PM EST. The Topic will be Social Capital: The Key to Macro Change. Jeff Fromknecht (@Sideprojectinc) will be our special guest host. He will be joined by Dr. Al Condeluci, (@acondeluci) and Jamie Curran (@JamieVCurran). They are the lead organizers of the Interdependence Network. The Interdependence Network (IN) is a collective impact effort made up of human service organizations from around the United States, Canada and Australia. Member agencies have committed to shifting their emphasis from the traditional medical model approach to rehabilitation, to an interdependence model, which builds and fosters social capital and social inclusion within communities as the primary strategy for enabling people with disabilities to become full members of society.

The chat will explore interdependence and social capital, and the role these concepts play in macro change.

Resources:

Organizational Self-Assessment – What Type of Community is Your Organization Building

Al Condeluci’s Tedx Pittsburgh Talk on Social Capital and the Power of Relationships

Resources about social capital can be found on the Interdependence Network website

About us:

#MacroSW is a collaboration of social workers, organizations, social work schools, and individuals working to promote macro social work practice. Macro social work practice focuses on changing larger systems, such as communities and organizations. It encompasses a broad spectrum of actions and ideas, ranging from community organizing and education to legislative advocacy and policy analysis. The chats are held bimonthly on Twitter on the second and fourth Thursday of each month at 9 p.m. EST (6 p.m. PST).

For information about how to participate in the MacroSW chat, view our FAQs. For chat schedule and chat archives check out: https://macrosw.wordpress.com.

Photo Credit: By The All-Nite Images from NY, NY, USA (Ferguson Protest, NYC 25th Nov 2014) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

 

Macro Matters: 20% by 2020

By Rachel L. West
ACOSA Board Member

Update: Chat transcript can be found here.

The Special Commission to Advance Macro Practice in Social Work is calling on the CSWE and other social work organizations to make a commitment to macro practice. Current data shows only 9-10% of social work students plan to pursue macro practice. The commission wants to raise that number to 20% by 2020.

As Michael Reisch pointed out in his eloquent essay, macro is an important component of social work practice.

It pushes the boundaries of the profession by fostering a “big picture” perspective that enables social workers and society as a whole to analyze people’s issues “outside the box” and focus on the prevention of problems, not merely their amelioration. Macro practice explicitly embodies social work’s commitment to social justice and social change by promoting structural solutions to systemic inequalities and various forms of oppression that go beyond individual adaptation and resilience.

The Rothman report brought to light serious concerns that if not dealt with endanger the future of macro practice.

On Thursday November 5th #MacroSW Twitter Chats will discuss the work of The Special Commission to Advance Macro Practice in Social Work and the 20% by 2020 initiative. The chat starts at 9:00 PM EST. I will host the chat from @acosaorg account.

Before the chat please read the following:

The Special Commission to Advance Macro Social Work Practice

Why Macro Practice Matters
By Michael Reisch, University of Maryland

NOW! MAKE MACRO MATTER: Taking Further Action to Address the Macro Imbalance in Social Work Education

 Our partners include:

  • Association for Community Organizing and Social Administration (ACOSA), @acosaorg
  • Karen Zgoda, MSW, LCSW, Instructor of Social Work at Bridgewater State University, @karenzgoda
  • Rachel West, The Political Social Worker, @poliSW
  • University at Buffalo School of Social Work, @ubssw
  • Sunya Folayan, MSW, ACSW, founder/executive director, The Empowerment Project, Inc., @SunyaFolayan
  • Laurel Hitchcock, PhD, Assistant Professor of Social Work, University of Alabama at Birmingham,@Laurelhitchcock
  • Kristin Battista-Frazee, MSW, Author and Marketing Consultant, @porndaughter

In addition to the active partners above, founding chat partners include:

Political Activity at 501(c)3 Nonprofit Organizations: #MacroSW Twitter Chat July 9th at 9pm EST

US_Capital_Building

By Rachel L. West
Advocacy & Community Outreach Consultant

Jeff Fromknecht from Side Project, Inc. will be the special guest expert for the July 9th #MacroSW Twitter chat at 9pm EST. The chat topic will be Political Activity at 501(c)3 Nonprofit Organizations.

Jeff is a lawyer and social worker. He serves as Chief Executive Officer and Attorney at Law for Side Project Inc. The Organization supports and advocates for charities and philanthropic work.

“Side Project Inc. supports charitable and philanthropic efforts–large and small.  Our legal and development services focus on growing your ideas and projects into sustainable activities that have a positive impact on the community. We help people and organizations who want to change the world. No matter what your legal or development needs are, we promise to deliver objective, informed advice and actionable plans focused on helping you to make a difference in the community.

We work with tax-exempt nonprofit organizations, social enterprises, individual & grassroots projects, private foundations, small businesses, and law firms.”

The chat will cover laws and regulations governing political activity at 501(c)3 nonprofits. Topics will include how nonprofits can influence public policy, how IRS regulations affect the work of 501(c)3s, and issue advocacy.

Resources for the chat:

The Restriction of Political Campaign Intervention by Section 501(c)(3) Tax-Exempt Organizations

Advocacy & Public Policy

The chat starts at 9:00 PM EST. To participate use the hashtag #MacroSW. I will be moderating from @poliSW account. Jeff will be Tweeting from Side Project, Inc. account (@Sideprojectinc).

#MacroSW Tweet chats a bi monthly chats that ta
ke place on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of each month at 9:00 EDT/6:00 CT PM. The chats are collaboration between the following individuals and organizations.

  • Association for Community Organizing and Social Administration (ACOSA), @acosaorg
  • Karen Zgoda, MSW, LCSW, Instructor of Social Work at Bridgewater State University, @karenzgoda
  • Network for Social Work Management (NSWM), @TheNSWM
  • Rachel West, The Political Social Worker, @poliSW
  • University at Buffalo School of Social Work, @ubssw
  • University of Southern California School of Social Work, @mswatusc
  • Sunya Folayan, MSW, ACSW, founder/executive director, The Empowerment Project, Inc., @SunyaFolayan
  • Laurel Hitchcock, PhD, Assistant Professor of Social Work, University of
    Alabama at Birmingham,@Laurelhitchcock
  • Kristin Battista-Frazee, MSW, Author and Marketing Consultant, @porndaughter

January 22nd – Roe V. Wade

To mark the 42nd anniversary of the Supreme Court of the United States landmark Roe V. Wade decision, #MacroSW Chats will be discussing this historic ruling on Thursday January 22nd at 9:00 PM EST.

The chat will cover:

  • the role of the social worker as reproductive justice advocate.
  • the current state of abortion laws.

Rachel West will be moderating the chat on behalf of ACOSA (@acosaorg).

Resources:

NASW Policy Statement on Family Planning & Reproductive Choice

Social Workers for Reproductive Justice

Infusing Social Work and Reproductive Justice to Advocate for Women’s Sexual Health

Nicole Clark Consulting

#MacroSW Chats is collaboration Between the Association for Community Organization and Social Administration (ACOSA), University at Buffalo School of Social Work, the Network for Social Work Management (NSWM), and Karen Zgoda (Instructor at Bridgewater State University). The chats are held on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month at 9:00 PM EST/ 6:00 PM PST.

Transcript from 11/20/14 Chat

The 2014 Midterm Elections: Implications for Social Work

You read the transcript from the November 20th chat below.