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  • NASW-IL Staff

December 2023 - Southern District Update

Diona Shelton (she/her), DSW, LCSW, CATP, CCTP

Southern District Chair

Happy Holidays, Southern District!

Season’s Greetings!

The holiday season is now in full swing. As we wind down from the Thanksgiving holiday, I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving full of all the things and people you love most. As the holiday season can be a joyous occasion for many, it is also a time when the stress of the holidays can take a toll on mental health. I encourage each of you to pause to take inventory of your own mental health as well as that of your loved ones as we move full speed ahead into the holiday season. Some simple ways to take care of your mental health during the holiday season are to check in with yourself, manage holiday expectations, plan ahead, let go of extra stress, practice mindfulness and meditation, stay connected to your community, and breathe deeply.

Also, it is important to check in with friends and family who are experiencing grief and loss as this can be a particularly challenging time during the holidays. When we take time to care for ourselves and our loved ones, we are better equipped to cherish the moments that make up the beauty of today.

NASW-IL Southern District Chair Diona Shelton (she/her), DSW, LCSW, CATP, CCTP

I would like to thank our presenter, Crystal Rozelle-Bennett, LMSW, and our Southern and Calumet District members who attended our November CEU event. Crystal took us on an amazing journey of critical self-reflection and self-discovery and challenged our personal and professional growth. It was a pleasure to bring her forth to elevate her voice to enrich the profession further. If you know of others who may be interested in presenting for our district, please contact me at It is my joy to bring quality programming to the district, and I would love to hear from you!

Wishing You a Joyous Season,

Dr. Diona Shelton, DSW, LCSW, CATP, CCTP

NASW-IL Southern District Chair


Coming Soon! 2023–2025 IDFPR Renewal Requirements

December 1, 2023, marks the start of a new licensure cycle. With the start of a new licensure cycle comes new and updated requirements. Be sure to check our chapter News page for the latest changes on renewal requirements for the 2023–2025 renewal cycle. In the meanwhile, you can check out an early preview on our CEU Requirements page here:

Join the 2024 NASW-Illinois Chapter Board of Directors

DEADLINE: March 1, 2024

Want to make a difference for social workers in Illinois and beyond? Have expertise in a particular method or field of social work practice? Hold a unique perspective that you believe is under-represented? Joining the NASW-Illinois Chapter Board of Directors is a great way to implement change, share your knowledge, and voice your opinions! Getting involved in your professional association or consider nominating a colleague for a leadership position. Read more about the board responsibilities in the 2024 NASW-Illinois Chapter Board Leadership Recruitment Packet or our NASW Delegate Assembly flyer, or contact us to request a nomination form.

NASW-IL Advocacy At Work: HB2394 Passes, Addressing Licensure Processing Delays

The National Association of Social Workers, Illinois Chapter (NASW-IL) expresses heartfelt gratitude to the governor, the esteemed members of the Illinois General Assembly, and the secretary of the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) for their collaborative efforts in successfully passing HB2394 during this month’s veto session. First-time and reinstating social work licensees have been experiencing licensure processing delays as long as 6 months by the department. This extended wait time has been slowing down the pipeline of new social workers to the profession, heightening challenges to those in Illinois seeking access to mental health professionals. The passage of HB2394 not only enables emergency rulemaking to address these delays, but it also introduces a streamlined procurement process for new software, a crucial step toward ensuring faster licensure and, consequently, a more robust workforce to facilitate increased accessibility to mental health services for the residents of Illinois. Read more about HB2394 here:

Other Chapter News:

· NASW Applauds Senators on Historic Markup:

· Join the 2024 NASW-Illinois Chapter Board of Directors:

· NASW-IL Advocacy At Work: HB2394 Passes, Addressing Licensure Processing Delays -

· NASW Tips & Tools for Social Workers: Payment of Health Behavior Assessment and Intervention Service -

· Partial Loan Repayment Assistance Available to Those Working in Community Mental Health Centers:

· NASW-IL Advocacy At Work: Gov. Signs HB 2365 Providing Alternative to ASWB Exam:

· Get Ready to Update Records and Billing with New Nonbinary Gender Option in IL:

· Student Loan Payments to Resume: What You Need to Know -

· Social Work Profession One Step Closer to Interstate Licensure Compact:

· February 14, 2023 Update on the Social Work Interstate Compact:

For more news, go to the NASW-Illinois Chapter News page:

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