issue of BPD Update has unification and service integration as its theme. Unification is a very important
current issue with which BPD and the other social work education organizations are struggling today.
All of us recognize the current threats
to our profession, as social work professional roles have been eroded over the years. We see jobs previously
held by professional social workers now being held by nurses, corrections officers, police, and other professionals.
It is important that the profession of
social work have a mechanism to speak with one voice to address this trend. NASW’s Help Starts Here
campaign has been one important step in that direction. The co-location of CSWE, NADD, and BPD is a second.
The development of the Wingspread group is a third.
However, a major issue that remains is the fragmentation in our profession, with
many separate organizations, all advocating independently and sometimes in conflict with each other.
This had made it difficult for social
work as a profession to succeed in its lobbying efforts for important social legislation.
Alternatively, we have many important professional
organizations in social work and in social work education, each of which successfully serves an important, separate constituency.
The challenge for us, as a profession,
is to find a way to move ahead on this important issue without losing the strength and passion of these separate organizations.
In this issue of Update,
you will find three articles on the broad issue of unification/service integration.
Hopefully they will form the basis for
future dialogue and progress in addressing this important issue.