NASW 60th Anniversary

This interactive online timeline features important events in NASW’s history. Use it to learn more about the impact NASW and its members have had on society and the profession in the past 60 years.

For instance, NASW has worked to provide health care to the elderly through Medicare, secure voting rights for all Americans, and ensure equal rights for African Americans, women, the LGBT community and other marginalized groups. It also helped improve the social work profession by developing the NASW Code of Ethics, providing leadership and skills development, and leading public education and other advocacy efforts.

Use this interactive timeline to learn some of the accomplishments and milestones NASW has achieved during its 60-year-history.


Looking Ahead

The "Mother" of the Social Work Profession

1889-01-01 21:59:24

1889-01-01 21:59:24

Social Work Pioneer Jane Addams

Jane Addams and Ellen Gates Star opened Hull House in Chicago to provide social services to the area, which had a large immigrant population. These services included children’s clubs, nurseries, a library, an employment bureau, a lunchroom, and classes in history, music, language, painting, dancing, and mathematics. Addams's activities demonstrated the ethics and values that would become the basis of the social work profession. Addams won a Nobel Peace Prize in 1931 for her pacifist work.

Modern Social Work Era Begins

1898-08-01 21:59:24

1898-08-01 21:59:24

First social work courses offered at Columbia University in New York City

The first formal classes in “social philanthropy” are offered by the Charity Organization Society (COS) of New York City during the summer of 1898. COS had its roots in the late 19th-century movement to address urban poverty. The launch of these courses is considered the start of the modern social work profession in the United States.

NASW's Earliest Origin

1917-01-01 21:59:24

1917-01-01 21:59:24

National Social Workers’ Exchange Begins

The National Social Workers' Exchange, the first social work group that would later form NASW, is launched. The organization addressed issues of concern, set professional standards, and in its early years served as a placement bureau for social workers.

Getting Started

1955-01-01 21:59:24

1955-01-01 21:59:24

Beginning in 1948 social work organizations began studying whether they should join forces to pool resources and strengthen social welfare programs.

The Merger

1955-03-02 21:59:24

1955-03-02 21:59:24

NASW is established

Seven joined forces to become the National Association of Social Workers. They were the the American Association of Social Workers, American Association of Psychiatric Social Workers, American Association of Group Workers, Association for the Study of Community Organization, American Association of Medical Social Workers, National Association of School Social Workers and Social Work Research Group. The organization is originally headquartered a One Park Avenue in New York City.

The First Officers

1955-04-01 00:00:00

1955-04-01 00:00:00

Nathan E. Cohen becomes first NASW president and Joseph P. Anderson the first executive director.

Cohen served as NASW president from 1955-57 and Anderson was executive director from 1955-69.

First Issue of NASW News

1955-11-01 01:09:00

1955-11-01 01:09:00

NASW News, the official newspaper of the association, begins publication.

Social Work Journal Launches

1956-01-01 00:00:00

1956-01-01 00:00:00

NASW begins publishing its flagship journal Social Work. It eventually publishes five social work journals.

First Delegate Assembly

1956-05-17 04:00:58

1956-05-20 04:00:58

NASW holds first Delegate Assembly in St. Louis May 17-19.

First National Conference

1956-05-20 04:00:58

1956-05-25 04:00:58

The first NASW National Conference is held in St. Louis.

About 250 delegates from 140 chapters attended the conference at the Hotel Coronado on May 17-19. The delegates worked on policy statements on personnel practices, social welfare, and social policy and action. Chapter representatives were also able to comment on proposed commissions and committees and what activities these bodies should do.

Setting Social Work Values

1958-01-01 01:38:42

1958-01-01 01:38:42

“A Working Definition of Social Work Practice"

The NASW-published book delineates the values, purposes and methods of the social work profession.

NASW Strengthens Civil Rights Stance

1959-01-01 21:59:24

1959-01-01 21:59:24

As equal rights movement intensifies, NASW involvement grows

By the late 1950s the Civil Rights Movement was growing and becoming increasingly violent, especially in the South.

The American Association of Social Workers, one of the groups that formed NASW, as early as 1944 announced it wanted equal rights for African Americans.

NASW in 1959 released its Goals on Public Social Policy, which publicly stated and strengthened the association's support for civil rights.

The following year NASW's Code of Ethics again highlighted the association's pro-civil rights stance.

Joseph P. Anderson, NASW's first executive director, and other elected association officials advocated for equal rights for African Americans.

NASW also partnered with other organizations, including the National Urban League, Council on Social Work Education, and the National Federation of Settlements, to push for equal rights.

Some NASW chapters took part in civil rights protests and actions, sponsored workshops on how to improve social work practice with people of color, or surveyed discriminatory practices in social welfare agencies.

NASW's national office supported these actions and organized a multi-chapter conference in the South on improving race relations.

At the time, public welfare programs in some states refused to address the needs of clients who were African American or offered services to people of color that were restrictive or punitive.

Esther Lazarus, director of public welfare in Baltimore, was one of the first social workers to publicly denounce such restrictive measures.

Kurt Reichert, PhD, ACSW, president of NASW from 1963-65, once spoke about the mood at NASW during this period.

“We felt that we were ahead of other professions and we saw ourselves on the cutting edge. That is until we came face to face with the realities in the early ‘60s. We had to ask ourselves whether we had been too patient, too passive. Or our efforts had been too fragmented, too sporadic. Whether the majority of us, white liberals, had been too paternalistic. Maybe we were not immune to racism. I believe minority social workers also had to go through some soul searching. Where was their allegiance during the Civil Rights Movement? Had they been militant enough? Many of us, black and white, were inspired by Whitney Young, who was director of the National Urban League since 1961. (He) had taken on the task of stirring middle class America, especially corporations and professions, and whose grand idea for a domestic Marshall Plan (embodied in President Johnson's later War on Poverty) had been rooted in his social work experience.”

NASW creates ACSW credential

1960-01-01 01:38:42

1960-01-01 01:38:42

The Academy of Certified Social Workers

The Academy of Certified Social Workers (ACSW) remains a widely recognized social work credential. Social workers who hold the ACSW are qualified providers of social services.

First Code of Ethics

1960-01-01 01:38:42

1960-01-01 01:38:42

The NASW Delegate Assembly adopts the first NASW Code of Ethics.

The Code of Ethics provide a guide to the everyday professional conduct of social workers. The code is repeatedly revised in decades ahead.

Peace Corps Initiative

1961-01-01 01:38:42

1961-01-01 01:38:42

NASW and Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) meet with Peace Corps to lay the groundwork for social worker participation.

Social work organizations had a crucial rule in selecting, training and assigning Peace Corps volunteers.

Social Work Month Starts

1963-01-01 01:38:42

1963-01-01 01:38:42

NASW introduces National Social Work Month in March for the first time.

Mobilizing for Equal Rights

1963-01-01 21:08:42

1963-01-01 21:08:42

NASW urges chapters to get more involved in Civil Rights Movement

NASW's Board of Directors on May 19 adopts a strong resolution in support of civil rights. This resolution is distributed to the national news media.

NASW President Norman Lourie and Charles Schottland, chairman of the NASW Commission on Social Policy in Action, also urge chapters to increase pro-civil rights actions

By July 1963 NASW makes civil rights its No. 1 priority.

The association also consults with nationally recognized black social workers -- including Naomi Gray of Planned Parenthood, John Turner of Case Western Reserve University and Nelson Jackson of the National Urban League -- on its civil rights strategies.

Kennedy's Civil Rights Speech

1963-06-11 21:08:42

1963-06-11 21:08:42

NASW supports call for legislation upholding civil rights

President John F. Kennedy, in an historic June 11 speech broadcast on television and radio, calls for a new law to protect the civil rights of African Americans.

NASW sends a supportive telegram to the White House and copies to Congressional leaders.

Speaker of the House John McCormack (D-Mass.) is the first to respond to NASW's telegram.

"There is as you say a moral issue," McCormack said. "And the moral issue is of paramount and transcending importance."

Kennedy is assassinated in November but the Civil Rights Act becomes law the following year.

March on Washington

1963-08-01 21:08:42

1963-08-01 21:08:42

NASW members take part in March on Washington calling for equal rights for African Americans.

Social work leaders Whitney M. Young Jr. and Dorothy I. Height are organizers. Young, who will become president of NASW, also speaks at the march.

NASW does not have enough time to organize a national presence at the march but urges members participate.

About 200 NASW members march under the banners of the NASW Washington, D.C. and New York City chapters.

Many other NASW members participate as part of other organizations and the NASW European Chapter organizes a simultaneous demonstration in Geneva, Switzerland.

NASW charter member John "Jack" Hansan is part of a delegation of NASW members from Ohio.

"We had to get rid of this — I don't know how you would say it — this discrimination that was so prevalent in communities like our education system, our churches," Hansan said in an NPR interview. "So participating in the march was like climbing a mountain, and for us, we wanted to be on the top."

The Civil Rights Act

1964-07-02 21:08:42

1964-07-02 21:08:42

President Johnson signs Civil Rights Bill into law on July 2. NASW pushed for passage of the legislation.

NASW had supported the Civil Rights Act since President John F. Kennedy announced he would introduce the bill in June 1963.

On March 24-26, 1964 NASW holds an Emergency Human Rights Assembly in Washington, D.C. to mobilize members to urge passage of the Civil Rights Act as well as human rights reforms in social services.

The assembly is the idea of prominent New York City social worker Aminda Wilkins, wife of NAACP Executive Secretary Roy Wilkins.

NASW had orginally planned to hold this assembly on November 24-26, 1963 but postponed it due to President Kennedy's assassination.

Social worker Whitney Young, who also pushed for passage of the bill as executive director of the National Urban League, receives a pen from President Lyndon B. Johnson at the bill signing.

Young went on to become president of NASW in 1969.

Medicare Becomes Law

1965-07-30 08:18:36

1965-07-30 08:18:36

President Johnson signs Medicare, a program to provide health care for the elderly, into law.

NASW supported the law and NASW Washington Representative Harold Hagen, who developed proposals for social welfare legislation, is invited to the signing. NASW later supports President Johnson’s War on Poverty.

Getting Involved

1965-08-01 08:18:36

1965-08-01 08:18:36

Voting Rights Law

1965-08-06 08:18:36

1965-08-06 08:18:36

National Voting Rights Act, which protects the right of African Americans and other minorities to vote, becomes law with NASW support.

Enforcing Ethical Conduct

1967-10-07 23:33:36

1967-10-07 23:33:36

NASW establishes Procedures for Professional Review

This peer review process was created to hold members accountable for ethical practices and to address alleged violations of the NASW Code of Ethics.

NASW Founder Joins Cabinet

1968-01-01 01:37:12

1968-01-01 01:37:12

Wilbur Cohen

Cohen, a social worker and economist who helped found NASW, is appointed Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare (HEW).

Membership Expanded

1969-01-01 23:33:36

1969-01-01 23:33:36

NASW, which formerly only had members with master’s degrees, opens membership to people with qualified bachelor’s degrees.

Political Action

1969-06-01 23:33:36

1969-06-01 23:33:36

NASW creates the Educational Legislative Action Network (ELAN).

The Educational Legislative Action Network's political action duties are later assumed by local NASW chapters and departments at NASW headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Quest for Licensing Begins

1969-06-01 23:33:36

1969-06-01 23:33:36

NASW Delegate Assembly approves resolution to pursue licensing of social work practice in each state.

Move to Washington, D.C.

1972-01-01 01:52:46

1972-01-01 01:52:46

NASW moves from New York City to Washington, D.C. on 15th and H Street N.W. to be closer to federal government.

NASW Legal Defense Fund Launched

1972-06-01 01:52:46

1972-06-01 01:52:46

Fund provides legal assistance to social workers and helps educate profession on legal issues.

NASW Legal Defense Services was established to assist NASW members by providing financial assistance for legal cases and issues concerning NASW members and the social work profession. The name was later changed to Legal Defense Fund (LDF). The fund also supports educational projects to increase social workers’ knowledge about legal issues in social work practice. LDF legal briefs are filed in relevant state and federal court cases to protect social work principles and establish precedents in lawsuits that advance the policies of NASW.

Increasing Membership

1973-06-15 16:20:10

1973-06-15 16:20:10

NASW does first nationwide membership drive.

Each of the association’s then 60,000 members are asked to contact a social worker who was not a member and persuade them to join.

Chapter Reorganization

1974-05-31 16:20:10

1974-05-31 16:20:10

NASW Delegate Assembly votes to reorganize chapters by state, taking the total number of chapters down to 55.

States get Funding to Support Social Services

1974-09-15 16:20:10

1974-09-15 16:20:10

Title XX of the Social Security Act

NASW supported and advocated for legislation to give states social service block grant funding for programs to end child abuse and neglect and provide homemaker services, transportation services, adult day care services, training for employment, information and referral, nutrition assistance, and health support.

Pardon the Poor

1974-09-15 16:20:10

1974-09-15 16:20:10

Pardon of disgraced President Richard Nixon prompts NASW CEO Chauncey Alexander to call for pardon of the poor.

CEO Chauncey Alexander during a series of press conferences in Missouri says President Gerald Ford should have pardoned the poor, who are often blamed for being responsible for their plight, instead of Nixon.

Advocating for Women

1975-04-01 00:00:00

1975-04-01 00:00:00

NASW Launches National Committee on Women’s Issues (NCOWI)

The NASW National Committee on Women's Issues (NCOWI) was formed to develop, promote and/or collaborate on methods to ensure women's issues are included in NASW polices and programs. The committee also develops, reviews and monitors NASW programs and makes recommendations on how the association can become involved in national and international issues affecting the health, welfare, and economic life of women.

Achieving Racial Equity, Diversity

1975-06-01 23:33:36

1975-06-01 23:33:36

NASW's National Committee on Racial and Ethnic Diversity (NCORED)

The National Committee on Racial and Ethnic Diversity (NCORED) promotes conditions which encourage respect for the diversity of cultures, including equality of opportunity in all activities of the association. A particular focus is on those groups that have historically been subject to racism. The committee's origins date back to 1969 when the NASW Delegate assembly launched the Task Force on Minority Concerns. This task force after five years of study created the National Committee on Minority Affairs (NCOMA). NASW changed NCOMA's name to NCORED in 1996.

Political Activism

1976-01-01 15:15:18

1976-01-01 15:15:18

Task Force Tackles Gay Rights

1976-01-01 22:28:48

1976-01-01 22:28:48

NASW creates Task Force on Gay Issues to promote the rights of gay and lesbian people.

The Task Force on Gay Issues later expands its scope to include people who are transgender or bisexual. The committee is now the NASW National Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Issues.

Political Action for Candidate Election

1976-02-01 15:15:18

1976-02-01 15:15:18

NASW creates a Political Action for Candidate Election (PACE)

PACE endorses and financially contributes to candidates from any party who support NASW's policy agenda.

First NASW School Social Work Conference

1978-01-01 15:15:18

1978-01-01 15:15:18

NASW holds National Conference on School of Social Work, a national conference for school social workers.

Move to Maryland

1982-01-01 15:15:18

1982-01-01 15:15:18

NASW relocates to more affordable location at 7981 Eastern Avenue in Silver Spring, MD.

Moving Forward

1984-03-22 23:41:42

1984-03-22 23:41:42

Social Work Month Becomes Official

1984-03-22 23:41:42

1984-03-22 23:41:42

President Ronald Reagan officially recognizes March as National Social Work Month.

NASW Addresses HIV/AIDS

1987-01-01 21:22:12

1987-01-01 21:22:12

NASW issues guide to help people living with AIDS and their families.

NASW publishes “AIDS: Helping Families Cope - Recommendations for Meeting the Psychosocial Needs of Persons with AIDS and their Families.” Association submits report to the National Institute of Mental Health.

Improving the Image of Social Workers

1989-05-01 23:21:00

1989-05-01 23:21:00

NASW National Communications Network (NCN), holds its first annual media conference and Social Issues Awards Presentation in Los Angeles.

NASW National Communications Network (NCN) was created to improve how social workers are portrayed in television and film. It was founded by past NASW President Suzanne Dworak-Peck.

NASW Press Launches

1990-01-01 23:21:00

1990-01-01 23:21:00

NASW creates NASW Press to advance social work scholarship through the publication of books, journals, and other resources.

Moving Back to Washington, D.C.

1992-01-01 00:00:00

1992-01-01 00:00:00

NASW moves to 750 1st Street, N.E. to be closer to Congress.

Honoring NASW's Heroes

1994-05-20 04:00:58

1994-05-20 04:00:58

NASW Begins Social Work Pioneers Program

NASW created the NASW Social Work Pioneers program to honor social workers who have explored new territories and built outposts for human services on many frontiers.

Family Medical Leave Act

1995-01-01 00:00:00

1995-01-01 00:00:00

NASW successfully pushes to have clinical social workers included as medical providers under the Family and Medical Leave Act.

NASW Launches HIV/AIDS Spectrum Project

1995-07-20 00:00:00

1995-07-20 00:00:00

Helping Social Workers Help People Living with HIV/AIDS

NASW, with a grant from Center for Mental Health Services and the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration, begins to train social workers to address the mental health issues of people living with HIV/AIDS. The project is continually funded successive grants totaling more than $2 million.

Continuing Tradition

1996-01-01 01:52:46

1996-01-01 01:52:46

Supreme Court: Protecting Client-Psychotherapist Privilege

1996-06-01 01:52:46

1996-06-01 01:52:46

Jaffe vs. Redmond

NASW’s amicus brief in Jaffe v. Redmond gained recognition by the U.S. Supreme Court of psychotherapist-client privilege in the federal court system, specifically the communications between clinical social workers and their clients. NASW’s brief was referenced in three separate parts of the Court’s majority opinion. Based in part on the information provided in NASW’s brief, the Court shielded the client’s clinical treatment records from disclosure and extended the psychotherapist-patient privilege to licensed social workers, an evidentiary privilege which is now recognized in federal courts throughout the country.

Educating Social Workers about Law

1997-11-12 00:00:00

1997-11-12 00:00:00

NASW's first General Counsel Law Note

The first General Counsel Law Note, "Confidentiality and Privileged Communications," was published by the Legal Defense Fund. Other legal topics of interest and importance to social workers were addressed in subsequent Law Notes, reaching a total of 14 by 2015. Law notes are available through NASW Press.

Honoring Social Work History, 100th Anniversary of Social Work Profession

1998-11-12 00:00:00

1998-11-12 00:00:00

NASW donates social work treasures, including rocking chair from Jane Addams’ Hull House, to the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. NASW and its chapters also held numerous events throughout the year to celebrate the Centennial of the social work profession.

Tackling Racism

1999-04-01 00:00:00

1999-04-01 00:00:00

NASW holds “Dialogue on Race: Challenges and Opportunities of Diversity in the Millennium.”

Then NASW President Josephine Allen instituted the dialogue as a presidential initiative.

NASW Condemns Gay Reparative Therapy

2000-01-01 00:00:00

2000-01-01 00:00:00

NASW Board of Directors approves statement that condemns gay reparative therapy.

NASW says the practice does not change the sexuality and harms the psychological well-being of people who are gay or lesbian.

Cultural Competency

2001-01-01 00:00:00

2001-01-01 00:00:00

NASW prepares social workers to work in an increasingly diverse nation

NASW develops and releases "NASW Standards for Cultural Competence in Social Work Practice." The standards give social workers guidance on how to better serve an increasingly broad base of clients of different races, genders, languages, social classes,religious and spiritual beliefs, sexual orientations, ages, and physical and mental abilities.

NASW Foundation Established

2001-01-01 00:00:00

2001-01-01 00:00:00

The NASW Foundation was created to enhance the well-being of individuals, families, and communities through the advancement of social work practice.

September 11 Terrorist Attacks

2001-09-11 00:00:00

2001-09-11 00:00:00

NASW members and social workers rallied to help victims of the attacks and their survivors.

NASW members provided grief counseling and crisis intervention at companies, hospitals, community mental health centers, in schools, and as part of numerous Red Cross and Salvation Army emergency assistance teams.

Keeping Social Workers Aware of Major Legal Issues

2002-11-12 00:00:00

2002-11-12 00:00:00

NASW Legal Defense Fund “Legal Issue of the Month” series

The series began in response to demand for legal information that would focus attention on a single topic or case of interest to social workers. The "Legal Issue of the Month" articles provide social workers with access to summaries addressing commonly asked legal questions, new legislation, and court decisions, as well as highlights of emerging legal and social policy topics. Since 2002, the NASW Legal Defense Fund has published more than 300 legal articles without charge to NASW members.

Same-Sex Marriage

2003-11-01 00:00:00

2003-11-01 00:00:00

Massachusetts becomes first state to legalize same-sex marriage marriage.

NASW and NASW Massachusetts chapter file amicus brief in support of the decision. NASW continues to support legalization of same-sex marriage across the United States in years to come.

Women's Rights

2004-04-25 00:00:00

2004-04-25 00:00:00

NASW is one of the sponsors for the March for Women’s Lives.

The march attracts more than a million demonstrators to Washington, D.C. The event was called to protect women’s civil and reproductive rights.

WebEd Begins

2004-06-01 00:00:00

2004-06-01 00:00:00

NASW launches Web Ed, online courses for social workers.

Helping Social Workers Understand Legal and Ethical Issues

2005-01-01 00:00:00

2005-01-01 00:00:00

NASW Social Work Ethics and Law Institute

The NASW Legal Defense Fund established the Social Work Ethics and Law Institute (SWELI) to enhance social workers’ understanding and knowledge of legal and ethical issues affecting the social work profession.

Social Work Congress

2005-03-16 00:00:00

2005-03-18 00:00:00

NASW convenes first Social Work Congress

The Congress establishes a set of social work imperatives for the profession over the next decade. These imperatives include mobilizing the profession to engage in politics and advocating for quality, universal health care.

Raising Public Awareness

2005-05-01 00:00:00

2005-05-01 00:00:00

NASW launches Public Education Campaign.

The campaign educates stakeholders, including American citizens, the media, policymakers, employers and social workers, about the importance of this profession. Campaign includes advertising, public relations and marketing materials.

Assisting Hurricane Survivors

2005-08-01 00:00:00

2005-08-01 00:00:00

Hurricane Katrina, the costliest and one of the most deadly hurricane in U.S. history, strikes the Gulf States.

NASW chapters mobilize to provide assistance to victims of the storm. NASW also raises funds for relief efforts.

Raising Visibility

2006-01-01 00:00:00

2006-01-01 00:00:00

Improving Social Work Ethics Training

2006-03-16 00:00:00

2006-03-16 00:00:00

NASW Social Work Ethics Summit

A summit was held that explored the relevance of the NASW Code of Ethics and the future needs for ethics training as well as the creation of two online continuing education courses.

Institutional Racism

2007-12-01 00:00:00

2007-12-01 00:00:00

NASW report "Institutional Racism and the Social Work Profession" offers social workers guidance on ending deeply rooted racism in American society.

NASW Code of Ethics Available in Spanish

2008-01-01 00:00:00

2008-01-01 00:00:00

Codigo de Etica

Bolstering the Social Work Profession

2008-02-01 00:00:00

2008-02-01 00:00:00

Dorothy I. Height and Whitney M. Young, Jr. Social Work Reinvestment Act first introduced

The bill would create a commission to propose commendations and strategies to maximize the ability of America’s social workers to serve their clients with expertise and care.

National Health Care Decisions Day

2008-04-16 00:00:00

2008-04-16 00:00:00

NASW supports the first annual National Healthcare Decisions Day.

This day is used to educate people about the benefits of advanced health care planning.

Pushing for Social Work Reimbursement

2008-07-01 00:00:00

2008-07-01 00:00:00

Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008

U.S. Senate and House override President Bush’s veto of Rep. Charlie Rangel's (D-NY) H.R. 6331, the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008, restoring funding for clinical social work payments cut in 2007. NASW supported the congressional action and asked the association’s advocates to contact their local lawmakers to bring about the veto override.

NASW Legal Analysis Cited in U.S. Supreme Court Death Penalty Ruling

2008-09-11 00:00:00

2008-09-11 00:00:00

Kennedy v. Louisiana

NASW’s amicus brief in Kennedy v. Louisiana was quoted by the U.S. Supreme Court in ruling that the death penalty could not be imposed for a non-homicide crime of child rape. NASW’s brief was cited for two propositions: 1) The repetitive recounting of the crime in multiple court proceedings that are common in death penalty cases increases the victim’s emotional trauma; and 2) “when the punishment is death, both the victim and the victim’s family members may be more likely to shield the perpetrator from discovery, thus increase underreporting.

Helping Military Personnel, Families

2008-11-11 00:00:00

2008-11-11 00:00:00

NASW Joins Give an Hour

NASW joins the American Association of Pastoral Counselors, American Psychiatric Association, and the American Psychological Association to support Give An Hour. Give An Hour is a national nonprofit organization that allows mental health professionals to donate one hour a week to provide counseling to returning troops and their families.

Equal Pay for Women

2009-01-01 00:00:00

2009-01-01 00:00:00

NASW backs Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act

The law reversed a U.S. Supreme Court decision that limited women and other workers’ ability to sue for wage discrimination. NASW supported the bill and NASW CEO Betsy Clark is invited to the White House signing ceremony.

U.S. Supreme Court Cites NASW in Student Right-to-Privacy Decision

2009-06-01 00:00:00

2009-06-01 00:00:00

Safford Unified School District #1 v. Redding

The U.S. Supreme Court in Safford Unified School District #1 v. Redding referenced NASW’s amicus brief and the relevant social science research presented in the brief that said a middle school student’s expectation of privacy against being strip searched at school was reasonable. NASW’s arguments in support of the student were grounded in social science research regarding adolescent development as well as NASW’s social policy statements supporting students’ rights.

Building Entertainment Industry Ties

2009-11-01 00:00:00

2009-11-01 00:00:00

NASW launches SocialWorkersSpeak.org

NASW launches SocialWorkersSpeak.org, a website that lets social workers follow and influence how the profession and issues important to social workers are portrayed in the news, on TV and in film. The website enables NASW to begin forging relationships with notable entertainment officials, including director and screenwriter Oren Moverman, the producers of the ABC Family drama "The Fosters," and actor and director Blair Underwood.

Affordable Care Act

2009-12-01 00:00:00

2009-12-01 00:00:00

NASW announces its support of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act expands health care coverage in the United States. President Obama signs the bill into law on March 23, 2010.

2010 Social Work Congress

2010-10-01 00:00:00

2010-10-01 00:00:00

NASW convened this follow up Congress to reaffirm, revisit and re-imagine the profession.

Social Workers in Congress Join Forces

2011-03-15 00:00:00

2011-03-15 00:00:00

Congressional Social Work Caucus Created with NASW Support

Rep. Edolphus Towns (D-NY), with the support of other social workers in Congress and NASW, launches the Congressional Social Work Caucus. The caucus will focus on social safety net programs in Congress.

Exposing Inequality of LGBT Families

2011-10-01 00:00:00

2011-10-01 00:00:00

NASW partners on groundbreaking report

NASW partners with Center for American Progress (CAP), Family Equality Council, and Movement Advancement Project (MAP) in ground-breaking research entitled, “All Children Matter: How Legal and Social Inequalities hurt LGBT Families.”

Children's Bureau 100th Anniversary

2012-06-01 01:38:42

2012-06-01 01:38:42

NASW celebrates first federal agency that focused on well-being of children

The Children's Bureau and social workers have long worked together to improve the welfare of children. NASW celebrated the 100th anniversary with a commemorative poster.

Energizing the Profession

2012-07-01 00:00:00

2012-07-01 00:00:00

NASW holds National Conference "Restoring Hope: The Power of Social Work"

More than 1,000 social workers from around the nation and globe attend. Speakers include Nobel laureate and social worker Leymah Gbowee, Bob and Lee Woodruff, political strategist Donna Brazile, and Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden.

Supporting Veterans, Military Families

2012-07-25 00:00:00

2012-07-25 00:00:00

Dr. Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Biden, announces partnership with NASW to train social workers to help veterans and their families.

NASW Supports High Court Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

2013-06-01 00:00:00

2013-06-01 00:00:00

The Supreme Court strikes down the Defense of Marriage Act, clearing the way for the legalization of same-sex marriage across the United States.

NASW is part of amicus brief in support of the court ruling.

Voting Rights Disappointment

2013-06-01 00:00:00

2013-06-01 00:00:00

NASW disappointed by U.S. Supreme Court ruling that weakens voting rights and begins working with groups to restore rights.

March on Washington 50th Anniversary

2013-08-01 00:00:00

2013-08-01 00:00:00

NASW members from across the nation take part in the 50th Anniversary March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.

The march was called to commemorate the 1963 March on Washington and urge continued action on creating jobs, restoring voting rights and ending gun violence. Reuters interviewed NASW Social Justice and Human Rights Manager Mel Wilson about why the march was important for social workers. "We still deal with massive unemployment, disproportionate unemployment among black and Hispanic youth and that needs to change," he said.

National Conference

2014-07-20 00:00:00

2014-07-20 00:00:00

NASW holds National Conference "Social Work: Courage, Hope and Leadership”

More than 1,500 social workers attend conference in Washington, D.C. Speakers include former labor secretary and economist Robert Reich, business leader and author Steve Pemberton, and New York Times best-selling author and social worker Brene Brown.

Assisting Older Adults

2014-12-01 00:00:00

2014-12-01 00:00:00

NASW awarded $1-million The John A. Hartford Foundation grant

NASW will use the grant improve delivery of health care and social services to older adults.

HIV/AIDS Grant

2014-12-01 00:00:00

2014-12-01 00:00:00

NASW builds on HIV/AIDS Spectrum Project through SAMHSA-funded collaboration

NASW and the NASW Foundation, in collaboration with Education Development Center, Inc., the American Psychiatric Association, and the American Psychological Association, will use $4 million grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to create a new Mental Health and HIV/AIDS Training Resource Center. The center will provide training and education to social workers and others on the mental health issues affecting those living with and affected by HIV/AIDS.

Improving Health Care Delivery

2014-12-01 00:00:00

2014-12-01 00:00:00

NASW and Council on Social Work Education win $585,000 New York Community Trust grant

The grant will be used to help social workers improve delivery of health care services in the United States.

Raising Mental Health Awareness

2015-03-04 00:00:00

2015-03-04 00:00:00

NASW joins Change Direction Campaign

The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) becomes a partner in the Campaign to Change Direction, a nationwide movement led by Give an Hour to address the urgent need to get more people to discuss mental health, mental illness and mental well-being. NASW pledges to work with its members to educate the public about the five signs someone may be suffering from a mental illness. The signs are their personality changes; they seem uncharacteristically angry, anxious, agitated or moody; they withdraw or isolate themselves from other people; they stop taking care of themselves and may engage in risky behavior; or they seem overcome with hopelessness and overwhelmed by their circumstances.

U.S. Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Affordable Care Act

2015-06-25 00:00:00

2015-06-25 00:00:00

NASW says court ruling will preserve health insurance for millions of Americans

In a 6-3 ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court dismissed the contention that providing subsidies to low-income persons to purchase health care through the Affordable Care Act was improper. The National Association of Social Workers hailed the ruling. The association had pushed for the subsidies to continue because they allow millions of Americans with lower incomes to affordable health insurance.

U.S. Supreme Court Issues Historic Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

2015-06-26 00:00:00

2015-06-26 00:00:00

NASW joins amicus brief in support of decision

The U.S. Supreme Court in a 5-4 majority opinion rules that the Fourteenth Amendment requires the states to license a marriage between two people of the same sex and to recognize lawfully licensed out-of-state marriages. The decision clears the way for the legalization of same-sex marriages in all 50 states. NASW had long supported same-sex marriage. The association joined the American Psychological Association, American Psychiatric Association and other organizations in an amicus brief filed with the Supreme Court urging the justices to make the historic decision.

Improving Mental Health Care for Older Adults

2015-10-08 04:00:58

2015-10-08 04:00:58

NASW supports Improving Mental Health Care Act of 2015

The Improving Access to Mental Health Act of 2015 was introduced by social workers Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA-13), members of the Congressional Social Work Caucus.

The bill would align Medicare payments for clinical social workers with that of other non-physician health care providers, such as nurse practitioners and nursing assistants, by increasing the reimbursement rate from 75 percent to 85 percent.

The new payment structure and change in reimbursements for clinical social workers at skilled nursing facilities will encourage trained and licensed professionals to care for more seniors in their communities.

The legislation would also give older Americans, no matter where they live, access to the full range of behavioral assessment and intervention services that clinical social workers provide.