Read Justice Brief for Update on NASW Activities Regarding Ferguson

Cover of Social Justice Brief.

Cover of Social Justice Brief.

It has been more than two months since a policeman in Ferguson, MO, shot and killed unarmed African American teenager Michael Brown, sparking protests in that city and around the nation.

Despite the tragedy the National Association of Social Workers and other organizations see the incident as opportunity to end police profiling of people of color and apply best practices when police are apprehending people who are severely mentally ill.

The NASW Social Justice Brief “Ferguson, Missouri Aftermath: National Implications for Disparities in the Criminal Justice Continuum offers an update on activities NASW is participating in to try to prevent future incidents such as Ferguson.

These include a Congressional briefing that highlighted legislation from Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) to end racial profiling. NASW representatives were also at a gathering of more than 100 civil rights organizations where concrete strategies were developed to prevent future Fergusons.

Read the Social Justice Brief to get the latest information on Ferguson from NASW headquarters. And to learn more about how you can get involved contact Mel Wilson, MBA, LCSW, manager of NASW’s Department of Social Justice and Human Rights, at


  1. I think that it is highly irresponsible for an organization like the NASW to make such assertions when so few facts are known. The fact that Officer Wilson is Caucasian and Mr. Brown is African American does not provide sufficient information to essentially state that Officer Wilson is racist, that Mr. Brown was profiled, or that this was not a justifiable act by Officer Wilson.

    Maybe it was racially motivated. Maybe Mr. Brown was profiled. Maybe Officer Wilson murdered Mr. Brown. But maybe none of those things are true. None of us know enough of the facts to make any of these conclusions. I’m disappointed that an organization that prides itself on seeking equality and justice for all is apparently so quick to pass judgement and make racially charged accusations towards what may be nothing more than a police officer protecting himself. Let’s reserve our judgements, condemnations, and calls for action until we know what we’re talking about. Jumping to conclusions and subsequently being wrong minimizes the efforts and public opinion of those that are truly seeking equality and fair treatment for everyone.

  2. I agree that our law enforcement needs to be educated on assisting people with mental health issues etc., but I’m not in agreement in prosecuting someone before all the facts are! Like in this incident. Why aren’t we just as outraged at all the African Americans that are killed DAILY in cities like Chicago etc. Again, sometimes making a difference means you have to address issues that are controversial and base your actions ON FACTs VS. MEDIA ATTENTION that can be very misleading. And NO. I’m not racist! I too, am “a minority”. I don’t want special rights! I can reach success like everyone else! You work for it. That opportunity is for all Americans. THAT I am:) We’d be further ahead if we stopped blaming and made EACH PERSON, FAMILY, to COMMUNITY accountable for what they want THEIR LEGACY TO BE!

    • Renae, If you have to make the disclaimer “I’m not racist but” take it as sign you need to do some personal exploration before speaking further. Especially when it comes to the matter of state sanctioned human rights violations in the US.
      Do better.

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