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NASW Announces Opposition to Social Work Interstate Compact Legislation if ASWB Licensure Exams Mandated

NASW has released a statement saying it is prepared to oppose the Social Work Interstate Compact legislation under development by the Council of State Governments (CSG) if the bill is not substantially improved, including the removal of provisions that codify the Association of Social Work Boards’ (ASWB) exams.


NASW opposes these social work licensing exams after a review of ASWB data showed significant disparities in pass rates for prospective social workers of color, older adults, and those who speak English as a second language.


In an August 2022 statement after the data release, NASW committed to working closely with its partners to propose innovative solutions that reduce harm and increase diversity at all levels of social work practice. The organization remains eager to work with CSG to develop multi-state social work practice legislation.


These efforts will initially target removal of non-independent social work practice exams that may be biased, and support efforts to strengthen competency measures.


NASW looks forward to working with its partners to implement these strategic initiatives and to promoting the diversity and well-being of the social work profession and the health and well-being of the populations social workers serve.

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