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Legislative Education and Advocacy Day
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2018 Legislative Education and Advocacy Day (LEAD)

WHEN: April 23, 2018 | 7:30am – 3:00pm
WHERE: Pennsylvania State Capitol | Harrisburg, PA

What is Legislative Education and Advocacy Day?
Legislative Education and Advocacy Day (LEAD) is an annual event hosted by NASW-PA, at which nearly 1,000 social work students and professionals gather to advocate for legislation that is relevant to the social work profession. Attendees visit their legislators throughout the day and tell them why such legislation is important and how it will serve the Commonwealth.

What to Expect:
Legislative Education and Advocacy Day (LEAD) is for social work students and professionals. We expect student attendees from PA schools of social work as well as professional social workers from all across the Commonwealth. This is a great chance for you to experience legislative advocacy as well as the law-making process. This is also a great chance for professionals, experienced in the legislative process, to come show their support for the social work profession. Last year we had six legislators speak at our rally and we gained multiple supporters for our bill. We expect this year to be just as successful, if not more.

What We Advocate For:
NASW-PA advocates for legislation that benefits the social work profession and clients throughout the Commonwealth. Our legislative agenda – which is available on the NASW-PA website – provides an expansive view of the legislation that we advocate for, covering issues ranging from practice protection and licensure to discrimination in health care. The landscape of General Assembly changes constantly, so it serves the Chapter best to determine the exact pieces of legislation to focus on until a date closer to April 23rd. That said, there are two examples below of legislation that the Chapter will likely consider for LEAD 2018.

Senate Bill 65 would forgive student loans of Commonwealth residents who use their degrees to work in child welfare. Child welfare workers serve the most vulnerable segment of our society. While the work is vital, recruitment and retention remain difficult challenges. According to US News and World Report, social workers who specialize in child and family welfare had a lower average salary in 2016 than in 2010. It is extremely difficult to cover life expenses, including student loans, when one makes eight percent less in absolute dollars...which does not factor in the ten percent inflation that took place during the time period.

The creation of loan forgiveness for child welfare workers in Pennsylvania will help ensure that competent, qualified workers continue protecting Pennsylvania’s children. It would also help maintain the continuum of care that children receive, and save the Commonwealth the time and resources that would be necessary to hire new workers.

Senate Bill 530 would amend the Social Workers, Marriage & Family Therapists and Professional Counselors Act to create practice protection and update the scope of practice for clinical social workers. NASW-PA is working in collaboration with Pennsylvania Society for Clinical Social Workers (PSCSW) and other health care professionals to pass SB 530.

The State Board of Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists, and Professional Counselors is the only regulated board that does not have legal practice protection in place. A modest step forward, the proposed basic practice protection ensures that individuals providing clinical social work services are regulated in some way by the government.

This legislation would ensure Pennsylvania joins every state in the nation, other than Montana, in establishing a method of protection for Pennsylvania citizens in the receipt of mental health services.

Agenda for the Day (Note: the Capitol is within walking distance of the Forum)


7:30am – 8:30am | Registration

8:30am – 8:40am | Welcome to LEAD

8:40am – 9:40am | Legislative Process, What to Expect, and Talking Points


9:30am – 1:00pm | Attend legislative visits and committee meetings. NASW-PA will schedule legislative visits ahead of time. The time and location of your legislative visits will be provided during morning registration.

1:00pm – 2:00pm | Attend legislative sessions, lunch, and/or touring the Capitol. Social workers may watch legislative sessions live from the 4th floor balcony in the Senate Chamber.

2:00pm – 3:00pm | Rally at the Capitol featuring remarks from members of the General Assembly on social work and practice protection.

Watch the following recording, which is meant to help you prepare for LEAD!

Interested in sponsoring Legislative Advocacy Day? click HERE for the sponsorship opportunities flyer.

If you have questions about Legislative Advocacy Day contact Benny Brown at

Enter your address below to find out who your legislators are and how to contact them!

Click here to see highlights from Legislative Education and Advocacy Day 2016
Click here to see highlights from Legislative Education and Advocacy Day 2015





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