Thursday, June 27, 2013

The Political Social Worker's Overview of the 2012 Rothman Report at Hunter College

Rachel West, MSW, LMSW, founder and author of the Political Social Worker, attended the Macro in a Micro World: What the 2012 Rothman Report Means for Social Change Hopefulness conference at the Hunter College’s Silberman School of Social Work in New York City. She provided an excellent overview of the conference. West stated: 

"The purpose of the event was to gather macro social workers from around the United States to discuss the Rothman Report and to come up with solutions to the problems highlighted in the report. If you haven’t you can read the report here." 

She opens her blog post with a quote by a renowned social work professor, Dr. John Rothman (2013): “I wanted to be Jane Addams but I found myself in the world of Mary Richmond.” This quote is symbolic because the social work profession often neglects (and even ostracizes) macro social work. It is deeply rooted in the Jane Addams settlement house movement, which focused on social statistics, community organizing, and social policy). Unfortunately, the general public and prospective students usually perceive social work as clinical (mental health), child welfare, or case management. This perspective threatens the future of macro social work. Social workers have a responsibility to advocate for economic and social justice so that the clients we serve can improve their circumstances.

On my blog, I critically discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the social work profession. One of the weaknesses I highlighted was the lack of professional focus and support for macro social work practice. Meanwhile, learn how social workers can get more politically involved by the Congressional Research Institute for Social Work and Policy.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Video of the 50th Anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s Freedom Walk in Detroit

I found a YouTube video of the 2013 Detroit Freedom March. Enjoy!

On June 22, 2013, thousands attended "Take a Step" in the 50th anniversary march in honor of the original Walk to Freedom/Freedom Walk led in Detroit by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. On that day 50 years ago, in what is considered to be the original debut of his now-famous "I Have a Dream Speech," King told tens of thousands of people that it was time for the government and society to get serious about providing opportunities and parity in employment, education, housing and the overall quality of life for persons of color. Sponsored by UAW-Ford and the Detroit Branch NAACP, this year's walk serves as a reminder of that legacy and its pivotal role in the city's transition from one of isolation to inclusion. But it also is a chance for those who recognize the need for further progress to join in that call.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

50th anniversary of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Freedom Walk on Woodward Avenue

Congratulations, Detroit, for making the 50th anniversary of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Freedom Walk on Woodward Avenue a major success! I loved the huge turnout! It was such a beautiful day! The struggle for  jobs and freedom continues. I felt so proud to be an American.


When you talk with people who marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Detroit's "Walk to Freedom" 50 years ago, they will speak about the spirit of pride, unity, purpose and hope that permeated the crowd of 125,000 as they made their way through Detroit.
The march, held June 23, 1963, was the largest-ever civil rights demonstration in the country at that time. It was also the first time King delivered a version of his now-famous I Have A Dream speech.
On Saturday, the Detroit branch of the NAACP, the United Auto Workers and numerous other religious, civic and community organizations will commemorate the march.
"While we celebrate the dream and the legacy of Dr. King, we are compelled to work to make that dream a reality," said Rev. Wendell Anthony, president of the Detroit NAACP branch. "This is more than a march; it's a call to action."
Saturday's demonstration lands at the apex of a critical moment in Detroit history. As the city teeters on the verge of bankruptcy and uncertainty, reigniting a spirit of unity, pride and purpose is crucial, march organizers have said.
"It's not solely because there's an emergency manager in Detroit; it's not solely because this state has become a right-to-work state or because we are having financial issues all over the state of Michigan, including in Detroit. It's because of all of those issues, but it's mostly because the work of Dr. King is not finished," Anthony said. "We've made a great deal of strides since Dr. King walked down Woodward. But we cannot afford to rest. We're doing this to remind everyone that there is still work to be done."
The Detroit march preceeded the "March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom" in August 1963. A national march commemorating the 50th anniversary of the demonstration will be held Aug. 28 in Washington.