So this is probably an instance of me preaching what I don’t practice myself, but still… My feeling is we need more social worker politicians, social worker lawyers, social worker journalists, and even social worker CEOs- those with BSW/MSW in actual positions of influence and power.
The thing is, it seems to me that most of us (including myself) social workers don’t want to be any of those things. In general social work is a field that prefers change to be bottom-up rather than top-down, for power to be shared, grassroots and empowering, rather than arbitrated and contained. So understandably for many social workers (again, I’d include myself here), the notion of being in a position of power or influence makes them feel uneasy and uncomfortable.
I did a quick google search and turns out there are currently 2 MSW senators and 4 social worker congresswomen (https://socialworkcaucus-lee.house.gov/congressional-social-workers). I think it’s actually pretty cool that these women are there, cause I wasn’t expecting any actually, but yea, that’s the social work congressional caucus. And now I’m sure there are some social workers who got into fields like law, journalism, and corporate management, so I feel optimistic about that.
The social work profession’s passion to helping and empowering the most vulnerable and to minimize/eliminate harm is something I’m so grateful to be part of. But as uncomfortable as it may feel, I think it’s going to become more and more important to realize that the helping change social workers wish to achieve can’t have the necessary reach without also focusing on changing the larger power structure affecting masses and masses of people everyday.