The #MacroSW Twitter Chat will be on break for the month of August

 

As we take a break for #selfcare (vacations, retreats and other adventures), please enjoy transcripts of past chats from our archives.

Empty beach chairs, each painted a different colors face an ocean seascape
UVB rays from sunlight trigger vitamin D3 manufacture in the skin. But overexposure is too much of this good thing! Image: Wall Paper Safari

We’ll be back September 7th with chat partner @laurelhitchcock and new chat contributor @alyssalotmore.

Learn how you can become a contributor or a new chat partner here.

Chat partner Karen Zgoda enjoying community kayaking at Constitution Beach in Boston, MA
Chat partner Karen Zgoda enjoying community kayaking at Constitution Beach in Boston, MA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#MacroSW Chat 7/13/2017: Social Work in a Post-Election Nation

View the chat transcript.

The 2016 presidential election left many social workers wondering about the future of the profession and what Donald Trump’s victory would mean for social workers and the populations they serve. Now, more than eight months later, we’d like to hear about what you’ve been doing since the election.

Join us on Thursday, July 13, at 9 p.m. Eastern (6 p.m. Pacific) for the #MacroSW chat co-hosted with Social Work Today (@SocialWorkToday). We’ll explore social work in a post-election nation, share ideas about how to get/stay involved in advocacy and discuss ways social workers can help heal the deep divisions exposed by the election.

Chat Questions:

  1. How has the election affected you as a social worker and the populations you serve (clients, students, etc.)?
  2. Has your involvement in political action/advocacy changed since the election? In what ways?
  3. What advice would you give a fellow social worker who wants to get more involved but isn’t sure how?
  4. Have you experienced “resistance fatigue”? How do you combat it?
  5. What can social workers do to foster respectful dialogue with individuals who have different political opinions?

Shortly after the election, Social Work Today magazine spoke with social workers around the country as they contemplated the effects of a Trump administration. Many worried about cuts to social programs, rollbacks of legislation protecting vulnerable groups, an exacerbation of income inequality and an increasing polarization of political discourse. As evidenced over the past several months, these fears were not an overreaction. Programs to help low-income people are on the chopping block, the Affordable Care Act is under threat, and immigrants, people of color and LGBTQ individuals worry about their safety. And the political environment in governments across the country seems more toxic than ever.

However, social workers also expressed hope that the election would ignite a new sense of purpose among social workers and drive them to more actively advocate, engage in the political process and educate people about the profession’s role in promoting equality. These hopes, too, have been largely realized, and social workers are more involved in political protests, reaching out to their legislators and even contemplating running for office. They also are standing up for people who may feel confused, anxious or threatened in a post-election world.

Resources:

Campbell, O. (2017, May 9). Liberals and conservatives are equally likely to seek out political bubbles. New York. Retrieved from http://nymag.com/scienceofus/2017/05/the-right-and-left-are-both-bad-at-hearing-opposing-views.html

Dale, M. (2015). Social work tips for creating grassroots advocacy. NASW News, 60(6). Retrieved from http://www.socialworkers.org/pubs/news/2015/06/grassroots-advocacy.asp

National Association of Social Workers. (2008). Code of ethics. Retrieved from https://www.socialworkers.org/pubs/code/code.asp

National Association of Social Workers. (2017). Advancing the American agenda: How the social work profession will help. Retrieved from http://www.naswdc.org/advocacy/issues/EX-BRO-24617.TrumpTransitionBro.pdf

Reardon, C.C. (2017). Social work in a post-election nation: Facing challenges, encouraging hope. Social Work Today, 17(2). Retrieved from http://www.socialworktoday.com/archive/032117p10.shtml

Weinstein, E. (2017, January 30). Are you experiencing resistance fatigue? HuffPost. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/are-you-experiencing-resistance-fatigue_us_588ff968e4b080b3dad6faf1

 

#MacroSW Chat 7/6: ADA & Section 504: Disabled Students’ Rights on College Campuses

Image of an empty classroom. Classroom has three rows of tables with blue chairs. In front of the classroom is 3 large white boards.
Some rights reserved by Steven Brewer

Chat archive available!

Disabled students’ rights to receive an education and accommodations are protected under two important policies.  The Americans with Disabilities (Act) prohibits the discrimination of Americans who are disabled, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 states that all colleges and universities that receive federal funding (most public and private institutions) have to provide accommodations to disabled students.  

Though these policies exist, disabled college students receive pushback from their colleges and professors in accessing and acknowledging the accommodations they need to succeed in the classroom.  These barriers impede on students’ ability to engage, learn, and feel included and respected.  The growing trend of ignoring that accommodations are vital and not a hindrance is one that must be addressed.  

As we prepare to celebrate the 27th anniversary of the ADA on July 26th, and the start of the 2017-2018 academic year in a few weeks, it is fitting for students, professors, and social workers to understand the barriers disabled students on campuses experience, and how to advocate for their rights.  

Here are a few resources that goes in-depth about the mandates that protect disabled college students, stories of failing to receive or allow accommodations, and how to advocate:

A Comparison of ADA, IDEA, & Section 504
https://dredf.org/advocacy/comparison.html

Despite accommodations, some UMN students clash with professors over “unseen” disabilities
http://www.mndaily.com/article/2017/04/despite-accommodations-some-umn-students-clash-with-professors-over-unseen-disabilities

How Can Universities Better Support Disabled Students to Graduate
http://www.rootedinrights.org/how-can-universities-better-support-disabled-students-to-graduate/

Why I Dread the Accommodations Talk
http://www.chronicle.com/article/Why-I-Dread-the-Accommodations/239571

The Neglected Demographic:  Faculty Members with Disabilities
http://www.chronicle.com/article/The-Neglected-Demographic-/240439

Self-Advocacy:  Know Yourself, Know What You Need, Know How to Get It
http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/sec504.selfadvo.ld.johnson.htm

Our #MacroSW Partner facilitating the chat is Vilissa Thompson (@VilissaThompson).

Here are the questions we hope to discuss during the chat:

  1. Is the thinking about accommodations for disabled students tied to ableism, ignorance, or both?
  2. Has your college campus prioritized ensuring that students receive the accommodations they have a right to?  Why or why not?
  3. Have you witnessed or experienced resistance to acknowledging the accommodations of disabled students?
  4. Academics: How do you view providing accommodations to students in your classrooms?
  5. Students: Do you feel that professors understand why accommodations are important?  Why or why not?
  6. All: What can be done to eliminate stigma and resistance to respecting the accommodation needs of disabled students?

 

#MacroSW 6/29: Toxic Inequality Chat w/ Dr. Thomas Shapiro

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Image source: http://www.sociologyatwork.org/international-womens-day-jane-addams/

Chat archive available!

At #MacroSW, we often address inequality issues and the seemingly impenetrable macro systems that sustain them. We explored the AASWSW Grand Challenge: Financial Capability and Asset Building for All. Economic justice and equity were one of NASW’s top five social justice priorities for 2016. As Dr. Thomas Shapiro, the Director of the Institute on Assets and Social Policy and the Pokross Professor of Law and Social Policy at The Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University, has said:

Inequality goes far deeper than just income and wealth. It determines who can overcome obstacles: some have them cleared from their path, while others have trouble recovering from even minor mishaps. At its heart, inequality is about access, opportunity, and just rewards. For too long, toxic inequality has defined the landscape of our country, dictating where people live, how they fare, and what futures their children face. Its mechanisms can seem invisible, even inevitable. But they are man-made, forged by history and preserved by policy. Changing them is up to us.

Professor Shapiro’s primary interest is in racial inequality and public policy. He is a leader in the asset field with a particular focus on closing the racial wealth gap.  He co-authored a groundbreaking study, The Roots of the Widening Racial Wealth Gap: 

shapriohorizontal.jpgExplaining the Black-White Economic Divide. The Hidden Cost of Being African American: How Wealth Perpetuates Inequality, 2004 was widely reviewed. With Dr. Melvin Oliver, he wrote the award-winning Black Wealth/White Wealth, which received the 1997 Distinguished Scholarly Publication Award from the American Sociological Association. In 2011 he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study the wealth gap in South Africa.

Shapiro - Toxic InequalityJoin us this Thursday, June 29 at 9pm EST, as we welcome Dr. Shapiro to #MacroSW and discuss his latest book,Toxic Inequality. Dr. Shapiro’s widely anticipated new book Toxic Inequality: How America’s Wealth Gap Destroys Mobility, Deepens the Racial Divide, & Threatens Our Future was recently released March 2017.

Chat questions:

  1. How do you define toxic inequality? Why is it important?
  2. Describe how wealth is a “fundamental pillar of economic security” (pg. 14).
  3. Describe the role of racial disparities in wealth and income inequality.
  4. How can social workers and others fight toxic inequality?

#MacroSW Chat 6/22/17: Self-Care for Sustaining Our Social Work Practice

View the chat archive.

Over several decades, social work and other helping professions have become increasingly cognizant that professional stress too frequently leads to burnout, compassion fatigue, and vicarious trauma. These pandemic phenomena contribute to practitioner impairment, staff turnover, compromised services, risk management concerns, and professional crises. Attention to self-care is necessary for sustaining individual practitioners and our profession and essential for professional effectiveness.

Join us on Thursday, June 22 at 9 pm EST (6 pm Pacific) for the #MacroSW chat to discuss self-care co-hosted with media partner The New Social Worker Magazine (@newsocialworker)‏ and featuring guest experts:

Dr. Erlene Grise-Owens, Ed.D., LCSW, LMFT, MSW, MRE, Partner, The Wellness Group, ETC and co-author of  The A-to-Z Self-Care Handbook for Social Workers and Other Helping Professionals

@DrGriseOwens

 

 

Laura Escobar-Ratliff, MSW, CSW, Partner, The Wellness Group, ETC, Division Director, Centerstone of Kentucky

@LauraE_R

Focus on self-care requires acknowledging the interaction between micro, mezzo, macro, and even meta dimensions.  The emphasis on self-care as a core element of ethical and competent practice requires developing knowledge, skills, and resources. The A-to-Z Self-Care Handbook for Social Workers and Other Helping Professionals is for individuals, agencies, and educational programs to guide the development of self-care as a core aspect of professional practice.

Five Questions We’ll Explore:

  1. How do you define self-care?
  2. What are your successes, struggles, and strategies with self-care?
  3. In what ways do you integrate self-care in HOW you do your work?
  4. What are some connections between macro practice and self-care?
  5. What is one self-care commitment you will make to sustain YOUR social work practice?

Self-care is a lived experience. Dr. Erlene Grise-Owens was fired from a full, tenured faculty position, and simultaneously, Laura Escobar-Ratliff (and other colleagues) resigned from the same university. This difficult path required radical self-care, especially since this development was made public through media coverage of the comprehensive and censuring investigative report by the American Association of University Professors (AAUP’s) report. AAUP officially censured the university on June 17, 2017. Also, read Erlene’s recent blog post, Fired Up to Spark Self-Care.

Self-care sustains us, personally—and is essential to sustaining the profession of social work! We look forward to an engaged and important discussion with you about macro social work and #SelfCare!

Resources

  • The New Social Worker’s Self-Care Section, includes Eriene Grise-Owens’ Self-Care A-to-Z blog and other articles on self-care, The New Social Worker magazine
  • Self-Care Solutions: Facing the Challenge of Asking for Help, Liza Greville, MA, LCSW, Social Work Today
  • The International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW)’s Statement of Ethical Principles (approved in 2004) states: “ Social workers have a duty to take necessary steps to care for themselves professionally and personally in the workplace and society” (Article 5, Professional Conduct, #6)
  • NASW published in 2008 an Issue and Policy Statement on Professional Self-Care and Social Work The statement delineates key aspects for both individual and systemic attention. This compact and compelling statement on the crucial importance of self-care should be required reading for every social worker on a regular basis.
  • This blog post on Self-care and Organizational Wellness provides a succinct contextual understanding of the interactive nature of (micro) self-care and larger systems (e.g., teams, organizations, etc).
  • University of Buffalo’s online Self-Care Starter Kit hosted by Dr. Lisa Butler and colleagues.
  • The Wellness Group, ETC which provides evaluation, training and consultation to human service professionals and organizations.

#MacroSW Chat 6/15/17: Aging in the 21st Century with Dr. Nathalie P. Jones

Update: the archive for this chat can be found here

For our Thursday chat on June 15th, #MacroSW chat will cover Aging in the 21s Century.

digital life

When thinking about aging in the 21st Century, consider that individuals are: living longer, making more healthy life choices, using technology to stimulate their minds, and becoming more physically active.

The current condition of the aging population is a focus of heightened discussion within the social work profession (one example of this focus is the upcoming virtual NASW conference, Aging Through the Social Work Lens). According to the National Institute on Aging, in 2010 there were 524 million people aged 65 years and older, representing eight percent of the global population. Moreover, older adults are increasing participation in physical activities, and have demonstrated increased technology use, which increases cognitive stimulation. This suggests possible explanations for increased life expectancy. As a result, academic and practical social workers are seeking deeper insights for this life expectancy, and overall quality of life.  Research emphasizes the life choices that the older adults are making as it relates to health, physical activity and brain activity through technology use. When older adults become more active, their heart rate increases and their confidence is heightened by their independence (Berlin, Kruger and Klenosky, 2017).

According to Pew Research Center, 79% of people in the United States use technology on a regular basis. Of this percentage, adults aged 65 to 69 are known to spend large amounts of time online. Technology use has become popular across the board with populations ranging from infancy to older adults. In particular, it has impacted the older population by increasing their cognitive activity; provided support for safety precautions (security cameras); and has allowed for overall heightened independence (Rogers, Stronge and Fisk, 2005). While the aging population has more choices to prolong life, it seems that they are in need of more social workers to support and advocate on their behalf. While discussing and exploring aging in the 21st Century, the limitations include current literature in practice and social work education on aging in the 21st century. The strengths include the ability to explore and to add to this body of literature as well as to increase the emphasis on social work with aging populations within social work education.ProfNJones

Our guest host will be Nathalie P. Jones, PhD, MSW (@DrNJonesTSU), Assistant Professor in the Department of Social Work at Tarleton State University.

Nathalie enjoys working with the aging population and has a research interest that includes Healthy Aging. As a Masters level student Nathalie completed her internship serving the older population. Also, while in practice Nathalie was a gerontology social worker for the West Palm Beach Housing Authority. Currently, she is a Faculty Fellow and is proud to have the opportunity to discuss Aging in the 21st Century during the #MacroSW chat.

Possible discussion questions for the #MacroSW chat:

  • When you were younger how did “aging” look to you?
  • As you got older, how did your impression of aging change?
  • What age is considered the late adulthood phase?
  • What does aging look like to you in the 21st Century?
  • What impact does the younger generation have on the aging population?
  • How has technology impacted the aging population currently, like social media?
  • How can social workers support the aging population in the 21st century?

Additional Questions:

  • In what ways have you seen technology among members of the aging population?
  • What barriers to physical activity have you seen older adults struggle with?
  • How should social workers become more visible/interactive with and to the aging population?

About #MacroSW:

#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 weekly on Twitter every Thursday at 9 p.m. EST (6 p.m. PST). Click here for a list of chat partners. For information about how to participate in the #MacroSW chat, view our FAQs. For chat schedule and chat archives check out: http://macrosw.com.

References:

Anderson, M. & Perrin, A. (2017), Tech Adoption Climbs Among Older Adults. Pew Research Center Retrieved from http://www.pewinternet.org/2017/05/17/tech-adoption-climbs-among-older-adults/

Berlin, K., Kruger, T., & Klenosky, D. B. (2016). A mixed-methods investigation of successful aging among older women engaged in sports-based versus exercise-based leisure time physical activities. Journal of Women & Aging, 1-11.

National Institute on Aging Retrieved from https://www.nia.nih.gov/research/publication/global-health-and-aging/living-longer

Rogers, W. A., Stronge, A. J., & Fisk, A. D. (2005). Technology and aging. Reviews of human factors and ergonomics, 1(1), 130-171.

Building the #MacroSW Syllabus Chat, 6/8 at 9pm EST

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The author’s “it’s on the syllabus” T-shirt, lying on a syllabus.

Chat archive now available!

It’s on the syllabus” may be one of the most common refrains in the classroom and educator email inbox. It is a phrase meant to tactfully remind students that they may already possess the answer to the question they are asking. However, we do not yet have a syllabus for #MacroSW, and we need your help to build one.

The #MacroSW Syllabus (http://bit.ly/macroswsyllabus) is an open source document created by #MacroSW Chat Partners that enables macro social work practitioners to share community practice resources. It is a free resource whose aim is to gather resources for students and professionals who are engaging in macro practice. #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.

If you have questions or problems accessing the document please email us at OfficalMacroSW@gmail.com. You can also connect with us on Twitter (@OfficalMacroSW) and Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/macrosw). We encourage you to share the link with other macro social workers. This includes sharing the syllabus link via email, social networking account or through other forms of media. When sharing through social networking sites, such as twitter, please use the hashtag #MacroSW.

Submission Guidelines:

  1. Material must be focused on macro practice social work
  2. Shared resources must be easy to access
  3. Resources should be free or low cost
  4. Please use APA style
  5. The #MacroSW Syllabus uses a Creative Commons license. Please read the licensing guidelines here.

Chat Questions:

  1. Why does #MacroSW matter to you? What is your #MacroSW story/journey?
  2. What are your favorite #MacroSW resources?
  3. What #MacroSW resources do you still need?
  4. Help us develop this resource by adding directly to the syllabus here: http://bit.ly/macroswsyllabus Please share with at least 5 contacts!

We will use this discussion to develop the #MacroSW syllabus – your feedback and syllabus additions will help us make sure it best reflects our community, concerns, experiences, and voice.

Fighting an Anti-Social Work Agenda: Building a Better World #MacroSW Chat, May 4th at 9pm EST

Update: Chat archive now available!

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The organizing chat series was born out of a need to fight back against an anti-social work agenda being pushed by the current president and his administration, but also to start a dialogue about the role of social work in organizing and direct action. Is our work simply to ameliorate the suffering of the oppressed or is it to transform systems to end oppression?

Now more than 100 days into a new presidential administration, this question–and the answer to it–is becoming increasingly critical.

Many social workers are engaging in various forms of resistance both individually and collectively. Whether developing new programs and resources for oppressed people being increasingly marginalized, advocating for policy change, or participating in public actions, social workers are on the front lines in the fight for a just and equitable society. But what does that society look like and how do we get there?

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This discussion is the last in the first ever #MacroSW organizing chat series. The first chat focused on understanding power as organized people and organized money. The second chat discussed how we can effectively build relationships to develop grassroots power. The third chat focused on the power of protest as a tactic among many to achieve strategic change. How can we now take these concepts into the real world? And to what end?

In the fourth chat of the series, we will answer the following questions:

  1. What is your vision for a world consistent with social work values?
  2. What needs to change to make make your vision for a better world a reality? What are you doing to make that happen?
  3. Which social work skills do you think are most useful in your work to build a better world?
  4. How can #MacroSW help? What topics would you like to see discussed in future organizing chats?

About the Host
IMG_20170120_121533_860.jpgJustin Vest is the lead organizer for Montgomery County at Progressive Maryland where he leads issue-based advocacy campaigns and develops volunteer organizers to fight for social and economic justice. He earned his BSW from the University of Montevallo and MSW from the University of Alabama before relocating to the DC Metro area.

Fighting an Anti-Social Work Agenda: The Power of Protest #MacroSW Chat 4/13 at 9pm EST

Update: Chat archive available!

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At first glance, social work may not appear to be intrinsically linked to protest. After all, we’re more likely to be found working behind a cluttered desk or our car between home visits. But in the earliest days of the profession social workers were integrated within the communities they served. Settlement houses were often used as meeting locations for community activists to organize strikes and other public demonstrations.

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Image source. Photograph shows the American delegates to the International Congress of Women which was held at the Hague, the Netherlands in 1915. The delegates include: feminist and peace activist Emmeline Pethick-Lawrence (1867-1954), social activist and writer Jane Addams (1860-1935), and Annie E. Malloy, president of the Boston Telephone Operators Union. To the right of Malloy may be labor journalist and activist Mary Heaton Vorst (1874-1966) and the woman wearing a hat on the far right may be Lillian Kohlhamer of Chicago. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2012)

Since the election of Donald Trump, America has seen a resurgence in public activism in

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Left to right: Rudra Kapila, Sunya Folayan, Karen Zgoda, Kristin Battista-Frazee at the Women’s March in DC, January 2017. See more #MacroSW at the March here.

the form of mass protests and actions. Social workers of course have taken part in many of these actions as individuals or small groups, but our profession’s collective presence has been limited. The current administration has taken many actions that are explicitly contrary to social work values. With calls from the NASW and other social work institutions to organize, oppose, resist, and educate in response to an anti-social work agenda, it is time for social workers to consider how we can take bolder action to resist unjust policies.

Fighting Anti-SW Agenda Twitter.png

This discussion continues the #MacroSW organizing chat series. The first chat focused on understanding power as organized people and organized money. The second chat discussed how we can effectively build relationships to develop grassroots power. How can we now take these concepts to develop public demonstrations of our power? And to what end? In the third chat of the series, we will answer the following questions:

Q1: Have you ever taken part in an action (rally, protest, disruption, etc)? What was it? Describe the experience. #MacroSW

Q2: Was the action effective? Why or why not? If so, what did it achieve? #MacroSW

Q3: Are there specific forms of protest or tactics you think social workers should be engaging in? #MacroSW

Q4: Do you have plans to participate in an upcoming action? What is it? If not, what would you like to see in your area? #MacroSW

About the Host

Justin Vest is the lead organizer for Montgomery County at Progressive Maryland where he leads issue-based advocacy campaigns and develops volunteer organizers to fight for social and economic justice. He earned his BSW from the University of Montevallo and MSW from the University of Alabama before relocating to the DC Metro area.