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.

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