Shea-Porter Introduces Social Work Bill

WASHINGTON-- Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter yesterday introduced House Resolution 266 in support of the goals and ideals of professional social workers. March is Professional Social Work Month, and March 26th was World Social Work Day. The legislation passed the House.

Shea-Porter worked as a social worker and teacher before winning election to Congress in November. Resolution 266 was co-sponsored by six other members of the House who are social workers, Susan Davis (D-CA), Barbara Lee(D-CA), Allyson Schwartz (D-PA), Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-OH), Ciro Rodriguez(D-TX) and Edolphus Towns (D-NY).

Shea-Porter made the following statement on the floor of the House of Representatives:

"Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to offer House Resolution 266, which honors the dedication and compassion of professional social workers. Our highest calling to humans is to provide service to others, especially those less fortunate than ourselves. At the turn of the twentieth century, thousands of people lived in despair and poverty and it was the early Progressive movement in which the social worker movement was born, providing food, clothing, and education to the less fortunate. Social workers had a role in Civil Rights and in women's freedom.

Today's social workers continue this fight to ensure that vulnerable families have the support and the health care that they need. Social workers are everywhere in our society, caring for all of us. They help people in all stages of life, from children to the elderly, and in all situations from adoption to hospice care. You can find social workers in hospitals, police departments, mental health clinics, military facilities and corporations.

Professional social workers are the nation's largest providers of health care services. They provide more mental health services than psychologists, psychiatrists and psychiatric nurses combined. More than 600,000 people in the United States hold social work degrees. The Veterans Administration employs more than 4,400social workers to assist veterans and their families with individual and family counseling, client education, end of life planning, substance abuse treatment, crisis intervention and other services."

"This resolution honors professional social workers who dedicate their lives to the service of others," said Shea-Porter. "Our children, our seniors and our veterans need social workers now more than ever."

The Congresswoman received her undergraduate degree in social services from the University of New Hampshire. She worked for many years as a social worker and teacher. Before her election to Congress this past November, she volunteered for a month to help victims of Hurricane Katrina.