Development of an interstate compact for social work licensure has been underway for nearly a year, with draft legislation expected to be released for stakeholder review and public comment in July 2022. The goal is to have model legislation available to states for passage, starting in 2023 state legislative sessions.
The development of a social work licensure compact is vital to ensuring licensure portability and interstate practice, especially as the landscape of practice continues to evolve, including the expansion of telehealth and the re-examination of how (and where) social workers engage with clients in the midst of the ongoing pandemic and beyond.
The social work compact development process has been led by the Council on State Governments (CSG), through funding from the Department of Defense. The grant, awarded through a competitive proposal process, was provided to CSG, which is overseeing the development of the compact. The Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) is the lead on the effort; the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and the Clinical Social Work Association (CSWA) are partners.
NASW cares deeply about social work licensure, supports the development of an interstate licensure compact, and has advocated for the social work profession by informing various steps of the compact development process. Participating stakeholders listed in CSG’s most recent update include organizations and states that had contributors on the technical assistance group and/or the legislation drafting team. Of note, the list of individuals representing groups outlined in CSG’s June 2022 update is not available to the public at this time.
While it was impossible to include voices from every state in the nation at this stage of development, the next step in the compact development process (stakeholder review and public comment) includes an opportunity for all interested social workers to provide input. It will be vitally important for all of us to participate in this next stage and NASW will share additional information about the stakeholder review and public comment process in the coming weeks.
To learn more, FAQs about the Interstate Licensure Compact are posted on the NASW website; a News Release announcing the awarding of a federal grant for the social work profession to develop an Interstate Licensure Compact is also available. For the most comprehensive information about the purpose of licensure compacts, please visit the Council on State Governments website at CSG.org.