2016 Interim Session Agenda
1. Increase pay levels for salaries for social workers and expand loan repayment program
2. Develop partnerships with state agencies to increase retention and reduce turnover of social workers
3. Advocate for the correct classification of LCSW’s within the TMHP and all other Medicaid provider lists
4. Establish equal reimbursement for licensed clinical social workers who participate in Texas Medicaid and all other payers when providing the same psychotherapy services; increase payments for tenure and specialized training
5. Make changes in regulations at the state level regarding Social Work sub-specialties with emphasis on:
A. Texas State Board of Social Work Examiners to recognize social work practice in hospitals and health care agencies toward licensure at the LCSW level
B. Adding a definition of school social work services work definition to the Texas Education Code; thereby recognizing their role in a diverse array of service
6. Monitor the emerging quality, scope of practice, access and legal compliance of social work within the framework of developing technologies
7. Support initiatives to create evidence based practices that provide data for outcomes in publicly funded programs
8. Work with Coalition Partners an equitable taxation and revenue system which funds important social service programs
9. Promote covering the Medicaid gap to support all Texans
10. Advocate with our partners for an opt-out voter registration system and the creation of on-line voter registration
11. Take a lead role in the advancement of equality for all Texans
2015 Legislative Agenda
1. Advocating for higher pay levels for state salaries of social worker-dominated positions.
- Higher pay levels for state salaries for social workers
- Raise classification level for social work positions
- Hire licensed social work professionals in state agencies
- Provide retention programs for social work staff in state agencies
- Establish loan repayment programs for social workers in state agencies
- Raise social worker salaries and employ only trained social workers in positions that primarily use social work skills.
2. Advocating for higher rates of pay for licensed clinical social workers who participate in Texas Medicaid.
3. Advocating for the inclusion of social workers as providers of any and all services for which they are trained (assessment, diagnosis, treatment, testimony in court proceedings).
4. Advocating for change in regulations at the state level on Social Work subspecialties with emphasis on:
- Texas State Board of Social Work Examiners to recognize social work practice in hospitals and health care agencies toward licensure at the LCSW level.
- To add school social work definition to the Texas Education Code thereby recognizing their role in school mental health services.
5. Advocating for appropriations for funding of social service programs in the state budget, with emphasis on the following:
- Promote Medicaid expansion to cover more Texans who fall between the gaps in current Medicaid eligibility and to assist the working poor.
- Support more funding to alleviate hunger in Texas.
- Pursue greater protections of Texas’ lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender (LGBT) citizens to include workplace nondiscrimination, same-sex partner hospital visitation, consumer rights and actively opposing any legislation to further oppress the LGBT community.
- Continue participation in various coalitions to support many issues that impact the clients of social workers (child protection, juvenile justice, mental health, education, health care, corrections, social justice, balanced budgeting, etc.)
6. Advocating for liability protections for social workers who serve as volunteers during a disaster.
7. Advocating for funding of social work research in partnership with Texas Schools of Social Work.
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