NASW/TX Leads Effort to Transform Social Work Board- Your Membership Hard at Work!
Thursday, January 12, 2017
Posted by: Deanna Gabelein
NASW/TX has been leading the effort to have the Texas State Board of Social Worker Examiners operate in an effective and efficient manner. Yesterday, the Legislative Sunset Commission authorized the creation of the Texas Behavioral Health Executive Council. This Council will house the Social Work, Psychology, Professional Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists, Chemical Dependency Counselors, and the Sex Offender Treatment boards. The Commission also realized that there will need to be more monies devoted to the boards so that they can clear out the backlog of ethics cases and process applications in a timely manner.
We believe this new entity, which will be fully operational on September 1, 2018, will be better equipped to do this. The current appointed boards will remain intact and retain responsibility for developing, guiding, and establishing matters related to their respective professions.
Each board would appoint one public and one professional member to serve on the 9-member Executive Council. The Governor would appoint a public member to serve as chair and the Council would hire an executive director and additional staff for administrative and investigative functions. The Council would have review and approval authority over rules relating to scope of practice, standards of care, and ethics as written by the independent boards. If the Council fails to approve a rule, it would return the rule to the board with an explanation for the denial.
NASW/TX can focus on these efforts because of our members. Without NASW/TX leading the way, our board would have continued to languish at DSHS or worse yet, be overseen by an agency in state government that has no experience in managing professional boards. Our members as well as all licensees will benefit from this effort. We ask that all members reach out to their colleagues to ask them to join their professional association so that NASW/TX can be actively involved in writing the legislation to enact this new agency. Our primary goal is to ensure that our board operates in a way that is both effective and efficient.