Look for these articles in the upcoming October issue, available soon at NASW NEWS online.
By Elizabeth J. Clark, PhD, ACSW, MPH
America is described by experts as a death-avoiding society – but only when we are talking about the physical death of a loved one. Out of touch with death as a natural phenomenon, we have become fascinated with death in many other forms. We are surrounded by death imagery, and we use death to sell things such as newspapers, magazines, movies and video games. In the past few months, death also has been used to sell a political viewpoint in the health care reform debate. This happened when the term “death panels” entered our everyday lexicon.
Unification Transition Team Releases Final Report
In June 2007, a unification transition team was charged with examining possible organization structures, identifying resources and skills needed for transition, and engaging social work members in unification. The team released its final report this summer. The team was created at the conference Social Work: Future of the Profession, which brought together 33 representatives from 10 organizations, including NASW.
NASW Lauds Work of New NIH Director Collins
NASW is looking forward to working with social work supporter Dr. Francis S. Collins, the newly appointed Director of the National Institutes of Health. Social workers have an important and growing role at NIH through clinical social services and research grants on psychosocial care; health disparities; family caregiving; and innovative, community-based health, mental health, and substance abuse intervention.
Income-Based Repayment Gives Financial Relief to Student Borrowers
NASW is partnering with the Income-Based Repayment (IBR) program to help spread the news about a new way to reduce student loan repayments. The IBR became available on July 1, providing much-needed financial relief for hundreds of thousands of federal student loan borrowers. IBR allows a borrower to make student loan repayments based on his or her income. The program also sets a cap on monthly payments based on income, and any remaining debt—including interest—is forgiven after 25 years of payments or after as few as 10 years if the borrower works in a non-profit, government, or other public service job.