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  • NASW-IL Staff

From the Pen of the Executive Director: March 2023

Joel L. Rubin, MSW, LSW, ACSW, CAE

NASW-Illinois Chapter Executive Director

Happy Social Work Month! This year’s theme is Social Work Breaks Barriers. We strive to do that in the NASW-Illinois Chapter and, as many of you are aware, have been at the forefront of breaking barriers around access to licensure for all social workers over the recent past.

This past month saw several major national NASW announcements in which the NASW-Illinois Chapter has had significant input and influence, including a national statement opposing ASWB testing and the an update on the revised interstate social work licensure compact language. I am a member of the national NASW Licensure Task Force and have had the opportunity to share the Illinois perspective with the task on these two barrier–breaking issues in our profession. Related to these discussions, I had the opportunity to appear on The Social Work Podcast regarding the elimination of the LSW test in Illinois. You can listen to the podcast here:

Early this February the NASW-Illinois Chapter met again with Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation (IDFPR) officials who informed us that rules had been drafted by lawyers for a proposal that would entirely remove the in-person continuing education requirement from licensure renewal: The state’s The Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) has posted the proposed language here (pg. 3, subsection titled "Social Workers"). To make comments on the rulemakings through 03/20/23, contact Craig Cellini, DFPR, 320 W. Washington, 2nd Floor, Springfield IL 62786, 217/785-0810, Fax: 217/557-4451. The chapter will continue to update the social work community on these proposed CEU rule changes.

Additionally, this past month Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker announced recommendations from the Children’s Behavioral Health Transformation Initiative. The Blueprint for Transformation: A Vision for Improved Behavioral Healthcare can be found at The primary author, Dana A. Weiner, PhD, Director, Children’s Behavioral Health Transformation Initiative Senior Policy Fellow, Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, addressed the NASW-Illinois Chapter Board of Directors at its February quarterly meeting in advance of the release of the report.

March will be a very active Social Work Month. The Events page on our website includes all the month’s activities. I hope many of you will find time to attend some of these events either virtually or in-person. The following are some highlights of those and other activities:

Chapter President Kenna Dunlap Johnson welcomed our new CEO Dr. Anthony Estreet last month in her “From the Pen…” article. As we begin Social Work Month, I would like to add my welcome to Dr. Estreet. We look forward to your leadership!

Celebrate our month!

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