Letters to the Editor (January 2015)

Social workers can be true to their faith and profession

I want to respond to the letter in the October 2014 NASW News in which Rick Ralston expressed his appreciation of the article in the July 2014 News, titled “Theology a Natural Fit for Some Social Workers.”

Mr. Ralston states that “It has been difficult to read many issues of the primary news magazine of my professional organization due to NASW’s liberal stance on so many issues.”

I re-read the original article in which two social workers who completed dual degrees (MSW & MDiv) discussed their experiences and their work. There is nothing in the article to indicate that either of these social workers have any conflict with the liberal stance of the profession.

Being a Christian does not automatically mean that one does not uphold or believe in the basic tenets of the profession. Mr. Ralston’s pleasure regarding the article seemed to indicate that somehow he felt a kinship with them based on their shared Christian identity.

The reality is there are many people in our profession who are both committed to their faith and committed to social work, which includes what Mr. Ralston refers to as our “liberal stance.”

Stacey Peyer, MSW, LCSW
Los Angeles, Calif.

NASW should say so if only aligning with Democrats

I read with interest the October article on NASW’s candidate endorsements. Out of curiosity, I followed the web link and did a search on each candidate who received an endorsement.

What I learned was that of 169 endorsements, all were affiliated with the Democratic Party. This finding begs a couple of questions.

First, why was this fact nowhere to be found in the article? Second, why did I have to search separately for each candidate’s party affiliation, even on the linked web page to the PACE endorsements?

This gives the impression of trying to conceal the fact that politically we seem to be functioning as an arm of the Democratic National Committee.

I actually have no problem with a mental health association such as the NASW aligning itself so exclusively with one political party. My complaint is that we do not openly acknowledge such a statistically impossible lack of diversity in our political endorsements when compared to the political makeup of the American population we serve.

If we are to be honest and transparent with the public, should not the self-description of our association include the admission that we are an unwavering supporter of the Democratic Party?

Christopher Rosik, Ph.D.
Fresno, Calif.