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Efforts to Recruit, Retain and Research Nation's Social Workers Gain Bipartisan Support in Congress
Date:2/27/2008

Dr. Dorothy I. Height Joined U.S. Congressman Ed Towns Today to Seek Support for H.R. 5447, The Dorothy I. Height and Whitney M. Young, Jr. Social Work Reinvestment Act

WASHINGTON, Feb. 27 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Congress is being asked to help the nation's 600,000 professional social workers better serve families and communities in need. U.S. Representative Edolphus Towns (D-NY) has introduced a bill that will establish a Social Work Reinvestment Commission to study policy issues associated with recruitment, retention, research and reinvestment in the profession of social work, and will support replicable programs of excellence throughout the country.

Original cosponsors include Rep. Christopher Shays (R-CT), Rep. Susan Davis (D-CA), Rep. Ciro Rodriguez (D-TX), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), and Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-OH).

The United States is experiencing unprecedented levels of human, social service and health care needs. These needs now transcend social and economic strata, affect the old and the young, and place tremendous burdens on those in the middle. As a result, millions of Americans, from all walks of life, are served daily by social workers.

However, competing policy priorities, fiscal constraints, significant educational debt, comparatively insufficient salaries, increased administrative burdens, and unsupportive work environments are just a few of the common obstacles encountered by professional social workers. These barriers impede the delivery of essential services, affect recruitment and retention in the profession, and compromise access to necessary care -- especially for the most vulnerable.

Social Work Reinvestment Commission

H.R. 5447 will create a commission to research social work's impact in practice areas such as aging, child welfare, military and veteran's affairs, mental and behavioral health and disability, criminal justice, and health. It w
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SOURCE National Association of Social Workers
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