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November 2020
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TopOfPageMessage from Chapter President 
Dear Colleagues,

Now that the elections are largely over we can look ahead to 2021. We know that change is coming.  We will have new leadership in the White House.  We still have work to do. There are run offs coming up in Georgia that will influence control of the Senate. I encourage you to help those efforts in any way you can.  

Closer to home, I'm thrilled to share that Miami-Dade County's new mayor is Daniela Levine Cava, who is a social worker and card carrying member of NASW. In addition, one of our past presidents, Dr. Mitch Rosenwald, also won his seat as a commissioner in Oakland Park. Congratulations to them both. 

NASW-FL has been busy. We had a virtual Board Meeting last week and we approved our Legislative Agenda as well as our Program Priorities for 2022. 
Christina Cazanave and I have been hosting regularly scheduled student chats, which will continue in the Spring. 

Our Racial Justice Committee, Immigration Justice Task Force and our Licensure and Supervision Committee continue to meet regularly, planning and taking action.

We've begun to plan LEAD, which we expect will be virtual, and our June Conference, which we hope can be a hybrid of in-person and virtual. Please consider submitting your proposals. We will keep you posted. 

Although we have our eyes fixed toward the future, I'd like to take moment to remember lost lives. The below was written as the result of an important conversation and with the support of Kryss Shane, MSW and NASW-FL member.

11/20 is 2020's Transgender Day of Remembrance. 

"Transgender Day of Remembrance seeks to highlight the losses we face due to anti-transgender bigotry and violence. I am no stranger to the need to fight for our rights, and the right to simply exist is first and foremost. With so many seeking to erase transgender people -- sometimes in the most brutal ways possible -- it is vitally important that those we lose are remembered, and that we continue to fight for justice."

- Transgender Day of Remembrance founder Gwendolyn Ann Smith

As we at NASW-FL work to continue to improve our focus on and dedication to meeting the needs of people in marginalized communities, we must continue to work to highlight traumas and honor the lives of those lost.

Anti-transgender violence isn't just directed at adults. Statistics from the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) show that in schools, 16.2% of transgender students report being physically assaulted as a result of gender expression, while 32.5% experience physical harassment.

While the losses are immense and while we are all lesser when our society loses any individual to violence, this is a reminder that we can all do more to become better informed, to step up, and to speak out.

Consider whether you are prepared with the knowledge necessary to work with a transgender client or their loved one. If not, consider taking time to read and learn or to seek out training (some even count toward licensing CEs).  Consider spending time researching the meaning of this day and to read the names of people being remembered this year. Consider posting about this day on your social media and/or speaking about this day with a youth in your life. Share that you not only stand with the transgender community but that your social work identity ties to being a vocal supporter of transgender people. Consider a dedicated moment of silence in your workplace to honor those taken from us and to allow a moment of thought for how each can do better to create a society where this stops happening. In summary, I encourage you to consider what ways you can honor and call attention to this day and to ending the necessity of this day. 

Stay safe, practice some necessary self-care and continue your good work.

Susan

Susan Mankita, MSW, LCSW
NASW-FL President
Student Representatives Column

Ending My BSW Classroom Experience During COVID-19
by Neal Sinha

I returned to school to earn my BSW in January 2018 in a distance learning program at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. I began at Florida Atlantic University (FAU) in September 2019 as a full-time transfer student. I believed, and now I could feel like FAU would give me so much more than my last program. If you were to ask my husband to describe me in the months before Spring Break in 2019, he uses one of two phrases, "the happiest I've ever seen him," and "I've never seen him so alive."

As a full-time student who has felt and is still feeling the full effects of how COVID affects social work education, I would like to share what I think students are benefitting from and what students are losing in their Social Work education because of COVID-19.

There is something about attending an in-person lecture that is irreplaceable, even over zoom, not by watching a video. The interaction between having a professor speak directly to the class, their students listening and asking questions, and the back of forth of a good lecturer with some active involvement from the students is college academics at its best. That is when I learn and retain the most information.

Another aspect of the in-person, on-campus experience missing is the relationships formed by mentorships between professors and students.  Professors see something special in students, some special gift that they decide to groom academically, to work together and teach.

During NASW-FL Board meetings, as the BSW Student Representative, I learn about what is going on in the community and what social workers are doing. These Zoom meetings have given me a well-rounded education about what is going on in the here and now and what the culture is like in the local area today. Students need to be kept up to date on these issues while still in their BSW program. Those situations are better to teach social work students with, rather than the scenarios used in the textbooks, at least in my own experience as a student.

While we have several months before spring graduations, I would like that four-year universities and colleges to do more to provide an in-person commencement ceremony and graduation to celebrate graduating students.


Top of Page.  
2021 NASW-FL Legislative Priorities 
and Statewide Meeting

The NASW-FL Legislative Committee approved 16 Legislative Priorities for the 2021 legislative session. Click here to read the Legislative Priorities.

The legislative Committee is sponsoring a December 4, Zoom meeting from 12:00 - 1:00 pm ET to discuss the  priorities and the upcoming 2021 legislative session with Dawn Brown, NASW-FL Legislative Chair, Mike Cusick NASW-FL's Lobbyist, Susan Mankita, NASW-FL President and Jim Akin NASW-FL Executive Director. 

Please click here to register for this meeting.


  
On October 13, 2020, the FBI's Office of Private Sector issued a Liaison Information Report ["LIR"] to warn medical providers of a nationwide fraud scheme targeting them. The LIR summarized multiple instances in which criminals contacted medical providers by phone, email, and mail, claiming to be from either a state's Board of Medicine, the U.S. Department of Justice, and/or the Drug Enforcement Administration ["DEA"]. At times, the criminals advised a provider that his or her medical license had been suspended, and then demanded to be wired payment immediately to avoid legal action. On other occasions, criminals claimed that the provider was under federal investigation for "illegal drug trafficking and money laundering" or "opioid distribution," and that immediate payment was required to prevent professional license suspension.
 
The following link provides an overview of the scam and offers best practices to avoid becoming a victim. 
 
Please share as you deem appropriate to members and colleagues.  

As always, Florida licensees may check the status of their license at any time by visiting:  https://mqa-internet.doh.state.fl.us/MQASearchServices/HealthCareProviders


Updated Emotional Support 
Animals Guidelines

A new disciplinary guideline was added (64B4-5.001 pp) providing information, including written documentation, indicating that a person has a disability or supporting a person's need for emotional support animal without personal knowledge of the person's disability or disability-related need. (section 456.072(1)(pp). FS

The new guideline is based on SB1084 which became law on July 1, 2020.

According to the website ESA Doctors:
 
The requirements you need to meet in Florida to qualify for an emotional support animal letter are the same as in the other states. The only distinction is that you will need to get a letter from a Florida licensed mental health professional in order to qualify. This is because ESA laws are based on the Air Carrier Access Act and the Fair Housing Act.
These are the basic Florida emotional support animal letter requirements for owners:
  • A licensed mental health professional needs to determine that you have an emotional disability
  • Your mental disability is in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
  • The identified condition substantially limits your ability to participate in at least one major life activity
  • The professional has to determine that an emotional support animal would help treat the condition or ease your symptoms
  • You need to get an emotional support animal letter which is a prescription for an ESA
  • The letter must come from a licensed mental health professional (Includes LCSWs)
  • Your letter must be on your therapist's official letterhead
  • Must include your therapist's license details, issue date, and state
Click here to read the full guideline.

Social Work Exam Prep Course

Social Work Exam Prep Course


You Are Invited to 
Sponsor, Exhibit and / or Advertise at 
NASW-FL's Annual Conference

2021 NASW-FL Annual Conference Sponsor Prospectus

You are invited to participate in the 2021 NASW-FL Annual Social Work Conference, June 17 - 19, at The Florida Hotel and Conference Center in Orlando, FL.  

The opportunities listed are for an in-person Conference; however, based on the COVID pandemic the Conference may be a hybrid meeting: in-person and virtual, or only virtual. All opportunities listed will be adjusted to meet the needs of the sponsors.
 
Save 10% on all sponsorship / advertising opportunities by entering Promo Code SPONSOR21 when you register online by January 15, 2021


Call for Proposals Open
Deadline is January 15, 2021

NASW-FL Annual Conference Call for Proposals

Practice Alert
ACA Open Enrollment for 2021

Affordable Care Act 
Health Insurance Marketplace Open Enrollment for 2021

November 2020
 
Open Enrollment for the Affordable Care Act health insurance marketplace is Sunday, November 1 through Tuesday, December 15, 2020. For coverage to begin on January 1, 2021, enrollment must be completed by December 15, 2020. 

Today, more than ever, health insurance coverage is necessary to enable millions of Americans to stay healthy and access quality medical care. During the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 10 million people in the United States have contracted the novel coronavirus. At the same time, record unemployment has left millions of individuals without employer-sponsored health insurance coverage. Disturbing trends also show that the rate of uninsured children has been rising since 2016 and health care service utilization for children in Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program has been decreasing (CMS, 2020).

Click here to read the full Practice Alert.


Stay Updated with 
NASW Information and Resources

We are here for you, and we value your continued support. We encourage you to access the resources below to stay up-to-date on NASW advocacy, practice tools, and training, and connected with your colleagues across the country:
 
Social Work Month
Social Workers Are Essential
 
100 Essential Social Workers in the US
Social Work Month in March is a time to celebrate the great profession of social work.

The theme for Social Work Month 2021 is Social Workers Are Essential.
Social workers are essential to community well-being.

As practitioners, social workers are trained to help people address personal and systemic barriers to optimal living. They are employed to effect positive change with individuals, families, groups and entire communities.

During Social Work Month, take time to learn more about the many positive contributions of the profession, and use the items in our toolkit to celebrate Social Work Month 2021!

NASW-FL developed a 11x17 poster to use for Social Work Month.

 Click here to download the poster

 
Social Work Awards Nominations Open

University Updates
From Around the State

Social work education is an important part of NASW, and maintaining relationships with students and their universities is even more important. Check out our latest University News and Updates on our website.

Local Unit News & Events
What's Going on Near You!

NASW Florida is broken up into  18 volunteer-led units that hold meetings, continuing education events, community projects, and social events for its members. This local network is one of our greatest membership benefits! Use the links below to find out what's going on in your local area.

UNIT NAME 
COUNTIES INCLUDED 
Ecambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Walton 
Franklin, Gadsden, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Taylor, Wakulla
Gainesville Unit 
Alachua, Bradford, Dixie, Gilchrist, Lafayette, Levy, Marion, Putnam, Suwannee, Union
Baker, Clay, Columbia, Duval, Hamilton, Nassau, St. Johns
Central Unit
Orange, Osceola, Seminole
Emerald Coast Unit
Bay, Calhoun, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, Washington
Tampa Bay Unit
Hillsborough, Pinellas
Space Coast Unit
Brevard
Palm Beach Unit
Palm Beach, Glades
Broward Unit
Broward
Miami-Dade Unit
Dade, Monroe
Southwest Unit
Charlotte, Collier, De Soto, Hendry, Lee
Heartland Unit
Hardee, Highlands, Polk
Sarasota/Manatee Unit
Manatee, Sarasota
Treasure Coast Unit
Indian River, Martin, St. Lucie, Okeechobee
Nature Coast Unit
Citrus, Hernando, Pasco
Lake/Sumter Unit
Lake, Sumter
Volusia/Flagler Unit
Flagler, Volusia


Here's a listing of events for the coming month. Additional details are available on our Calendar of Events or, if a unit event, on the local unit's page.

November 2020

November 19, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Volusia/Flagler Unit presents "Social Work Virtual Coffee Hour" Kim Devine, LCSW, LMFT, from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. (ET). Please join us for our monthly virtual check in with fellow social workers. Let's support each other through these difficult times! This is a virtual event. Please email us for the zoom link at

November 19, 2020 * Virtual 
*NASW-FL Central Unit is holding a "Child Welfare Social Worker Peer Support Group" hosted by Amy Moncion, MSW, LCSW, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. This is a Monthly meeting held on the 4th Thursday of the month.

This meeting is open to both members/non-members of NASW throughout the state for sharing of community resources, collaboration, networking and case consultation. This meeting will be virtual until further notice. If you have questions for our facilitator, please submit them in advance
to central.naswfl@socialworker.org. You will receive the Zoom login prior to the meeting.

November 21, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Broward Unit presents "Human Trafficking and Exploitation of Men and Boys" with Nathan Earl, CEO, Ark of Freedom Alliance, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. You will receive a zoom link and login on the day of the workshop. Registration is FREE for NASW Members and $10 for Non-members and $5 for non-students attendees.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

November 21, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Miami-Dade Unit presents a Social Workers Peer Support Group & Meditation, with Martha Vallejo, LCSW and Edith Caballero, LCSW, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. We will continue our discussions on the pertinent issues that influence our lives personally and professionally. We will share our intentions to help our community come together with hope and gratitude during this Thanksgiving Season. You will receive the zoom login prior to the event.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

December 2020

December 1, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Tampa Bay Unit presents "Integrative Health Care: Social Workers in the Primary Care Setting" with Peter Downes, LCSW, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Registration $5.00 for NASW members and $10 for non-members. You will receive the Zoom link prior to the workshop.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

December 2, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Palm Beach Unit presents "Racial Equity Action Group Meeting" facilitated by Keisha Henry, LCSW & Rorri Geller-Mohamed, LCSW from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Join us for our monthly Racial Equity Action Committee meeting. We will be having a speaker from NASW-NYC Unit to share their journey of bringing anti-racism training to the NYC social Work community. Join us as we take action together. All are welcome. This is a virtual event. You will receive a link prior to the event. 
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

December 4, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Legislative Committee presents "Racial Equity Action Group Meeting" with Dawn Brown, NASW-FL Legislative Chair, Mike Cusick NASW-FL's Lobbyist, Susan Mankita, NASW-FL President and Jim Akin NASW-FL Executive Director from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. (ET) Join us to discuss the priorities and the upcoming 2021 legislative session You will receive the Zoom link when you register
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE!

December 7, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Palm Beach Unit is holding a Cyber Annual Holiday Party
from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.(ET). Come celebrate! Join us for fun, games and networking. Spare no costs on your favorite cuisine and libations. We deserve it after the year we've had! Show up in your favorite, crazy or stylish hat or costume. You will receive the Zoom link when you register.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

December 8, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Northeast Unit is holding a Virtual Book Club hosted by Fred Sacklow, LCSW, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Please join us for "The Body Keep the Score" by Bessel Van Der Kolk, MD. There will be a discussion of this seminal work on psychological trauma. It is essential reading for anyone interested in and treating traumatic stress. The author synthesizes the new developments in the field. You will receive the Zoom link prior to the event.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

December 11 - 12, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL presents "Social Work Licensure Exam Prep Course" with Sophia F. Dziegielewski, PhD, LCSW, from 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. (ET) both days. Registration is: $195 Members and $250 Non-Members. Workbooks will be mailed. After November 24 a $20.00 charge will be added for expedited mailing. Registration ends December 4 at 5:00 p.m. (ET). The Zoom link will be sent prior to the event.CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

December 12, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Nature Coast Unit presents "LBGTQ+ Older Adults and Long Term Care" with Kathy Curci-DeGaro, MSW, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. You will receive a zoom link and login on the day of the workshop. Registration is FREE.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

December 12, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Sarasota/Manatee Unit presents "What if you Clients Says Yes? Suicide Prevention and Intervention" with Kerry Dennis, ACSW, LCSW, MCAP, CSAT, from 9 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Registration is $20 for NASW members, $30 for non-members and free for students. You will receive the Zoom link and login the day before the workshop.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION 
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

December 17, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Central Unit is holding a "Child Welfare Social Worker Peer Support Group" hosted by Amy Moncion, MSW, LCSW, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. This is a Monthly meeting held on the 4th Thursday of the month.

This meeting is open to both members/non-members of NASW throughout the state for sharing of community resources, collaboration, networking and case consultation. This meeting will be virtual until further notice. If you have questions for our facilitator, please submit them in advance
to central.naswfl@socialworker.org. You will receive the Zoom login prior to the meeting.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

December 17, 2020 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Treasure Coast Unit presents "Breakfast Club for Private Practitioners" with Facilitator, Candice Rasa, LCSW, from 8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. This is a monthly meeting. We welcome all professionals in the behavioral health field to join us. This meeting will be a virtual meeting until further notice. Registration is free. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

January 2021

January 11, 2021 * Virtual
*NASW-FL Palm Beach Unit - North presents "The Use of Authenticity for Self-Care in the Field of Social Work", from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. This presentation will summarize the application of self-care concepts based on Brene Brown's book, "The Gifts of Imperfection". Registration is FREE for NASW members and $10 for non-members. You will receive the Zoom link prior to the workshop. This workshop is sponsored by Benjamin Greenberg, Esq., of Greenberg Elder Law Services, LLC.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE



Happy Thanksgiving