NASW maintains a successful and strong presence at the Utah State Capitol. We develop and draft legislation relevant to social work; we provide testimony to the legislature and educate its members about the importance of our profession, we lead the charge to remove unnecessary and arbitrary barriers and work to ensure a level playing field with the ever-growing competition for clients and dollars. NASW advocates for you and for social work.
We have developed partnerships and formed coalitions with many advocacy partners to ensure appropriate funding for services, supportive and viable policies, and that social work is respected and protected in the legislature.
Over the past several years, our advocacy efforts have accomplished the following:
- SB 90: NASW strengthened the scope of practice for SSW’s, matched the licensing cycle with the CEU cycle, amended requirements for licensure by endorsement, increased rigor for non-BSW’s applying for the SSW level license, and enabled Utah State University MSW graduates to apply for licensure by amending the language in the practice act to encompass MSW programs in candidacy for accreditation
- SB 108: NASW worked to pass title protection for licensed social workers and non-licensed Ph.D., MSW, or BSW-level social work degrees
- HB 100: NASW drafted and passed a law to provide two additional hours on the ASWB exam for social work graduates whose first language is not English. This has enhanced culturally sensitive service delivery to Utah’s growing population of immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers.
- HB 56: NASW, with its partners, developed and passed statutory language to allow remote supervision and legislate best practices for Utah social workers engaging in remote therapy. It also restricts the provision of remote therapy in Utah to social workers licensed to practice in the state of Utah. This will stem the tide of ever-increasing numbers of out-of-state social workers seeking to practice in Utah via electronically mediated means.
- HB 294: NASW, with its partners, advocated for and passed legislation that allows social workers to lawfully engage in the practice of neurofeedback.
- HB 244: Grants rulemaking authority to the Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing to determine whether an applicant for a license as a substance use disorder counselor (SUDC) has met educational requirements. Basically, this amendment adds the words "or equivalent” to educational requirements for substance abuse counseling students—to accommodate qualified students in programs where an Associate’s degree is not offered.
- DOPL Rule Change: DOPL recently approved an exemption to allow social workers to practice without a CSW license for 45 days upon completion of all courses required for graduation. The exemption ends 45 days from the date it begins, or upon licensure, whichever is earlier and may not be extended and used a second time.
Your NASW membership assures a strong Utah Chapter and a strong Utah Chapter assures that we are here to fight for you. I do encourage you to join, renew or reinstate your membership today. Social workers need a collective voice. NASW is that voice!