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  • NASW-IL Staff

From the Pen of the Executive Director: September 2023

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

NASW-Illinois Chapter Executive Director

NASW-Illinois Chapter Executive Director, Joel L. Rubin, LSW, ACSW, CAE

As I write this note, we are concluding a summer of challenges, whether severe weather (both heat, rain, and wildfires), or senseless hate crimes, as well as achievements.

On August 4, 2023, Illinois Governor Pritzker signed House Bill 2365, a groundbreaking bill that establishes an alternative to the ASWB test for clinical licensure. This landmark legislation, the first of its kind in the nation, marks a significant milestone in the quest to create a more equitable path for aspiring social workers, ensuring that opportunities are accessible to a diverse pool of talent across Illinois. We thank all who supported these efforts to strengthen our state’s mental health workforce.

Many of you are also aware that this past July, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) officially removed the in-person CE requirement for the current licensure renewal cycle that ends on November 30, 2023. As noted in the official announcement on the chapter’s website, we extend a major thanks to the staff at IDFPR for making this critical change a priority this cycle, as well as the NASW-IL members who helped get this requirement lifted from licensure. The chapter has ramped up its many virtual (and still some in-person) offerings for the last three months of the licensure cycle, culminating in our fall virtual 2023 NASW Chapters Conference: A Meeting of the Profession, scheduled for November 2 & 3, 2023. Up to 11 live virtual CEUs will be offered. I hope you will be able to join us.

As we enter the fall, we encourage many of you to get involved. Here are just some current ways to utilize your NASW membership:

In other news:

The Pritzker Administration Announces $10M in Grants to Strengthen Mental Health Services in Schools and is accepting applications until September 8, 2023

Our annual information brochure should be arriving in your mailboxes in September. It is a wonderful resource for licensure renewal requirements, telehealth info, updates on the Social Work Licensure Compact, and more. To make sure you get your copy, check to make sure your mailing address is up-to-date in your NASW member profile.

Sadly, this past summer, we lost some longtime NASW-Illinois Chapter members:

  • Joe Marlin, a graduate of the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration (now the Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice), worked as a social work administrator at the Jewish Children’s Bureau and Mt. Sinai Hospital in Chicago. A member for close to 64 years, Joe was a founding member of the chapter’s Retired Social Workers Shared Interest Group.

  • Natalie Ross, PhD, graduated from the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration (now the Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice) and was a member for close to 50 years. Natalie's career in social work began in Detroit in social service, health care, and teaching. She furthered her commitment to social justice and service in Chicago where she worked at Jewish Family and Community Services for nearly 25 years, ultimately serving as its executive director.

We look to your continued involvement and support of the profession and the association. And as always, if you have questions/comments, please do not hesitate to contact me.

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