BPD Update Online, Fall 2003
ANSWER Update: The Center for Social Work Research Act
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David J. Dempsey, ACSW, Manager
Government Relations/Political Action
National Association of Social Workers, Inc.

Since the beginning of the year, the Action Network for Social Work Education and Research (ANSWER) Coalition, to which SSWR belongs, has been working hard on Capitol Hill to obtain co-sponsors for the National Center for Social Work Research Act (S.73/H.R.844). If passed, S.73/H.R.844 would authorize the establishment of a social work research center to support, promote, and disseminate research on the prevention and treatment of critical health and social problems. Originally the ANSWER Coalition sought to have the research center placed within the National Institutes of Health (NIH), however, NIH is in the process of consolidating programs and institutes rather than establishing new ones. Therefore, the focus is expanding to include other potential locations to house the research center, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Health and Human Services.

Both the Senate and House versions of the bill, introduced by Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-HI) and Rep. Ciro Rodriguez (D-TX) respectively, now have bipartisan support! In addition to Sen. Inouye's sponsorship, S.73 is now co-sponsored by Sens. Mikulski (D-MD), who is a social worker, and Snowe (R-ME). H.R.844 currently has 40 co-sponsors, five of whom are Republicans. The ANSWER Coalition is especially pleased to have bi-partisan support of the bills. Since the Republican Party holds the majority in the Senate and House, support of the bill by Republicans is essential for bill passage. The full list of co-sponsors may be viewed at:


Co-sponsorship of the bills has increased mainly due to the efforts made by the ANSWER Coalition's member organizations, as well as by individual social workers across the country. During the ANSWER Coalition meeting in April 2003, participants visited the Capitol Hill offices of several Senators and Representatives to discuss the bills. The coalition will have its next meeting in September; when once again members will be visiting their members of Congress. In addition to these meetings, individual social workers have written, called, and visited with their members of Congress in both Washington and in their home state offices. These advocacy efforts have proven to be effective and will continue through the end of the year.

To find out more about the ANSWER Coalition and the National Center for Social Work Research Act, including how you as an individual or as an entire social work education program can advocate for the passage of the legislation, please visit the ANSWER web page at:


Who are the newest members of BPD? Look on the next page!!!

Spiral, Horizontal Line Spinning

BPD Update Online, Volume 25, No. 3, Fall 2003

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