Social Worker Task Force – April–August 2021 Report

The group met 2-3 times this reporting period.

Recent Activities

First Activity
Completed "Guidance for Social Work Positions at the Library" handout outlining best practices for incorporating professional social work in a library system.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice, Organizational Excellence

Second Activity
Continuing work on manuscript for Trauma-Informed Lens Workbook (as yet un-titled) that outlines the pervasive impacts of trauma on library communities and offers a toolkit approach for how library staff can engage with the public to mitigate re-traumatization. We are hoping to have the workbook finalized and published in the Fall of 2021.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice

Third Activity
Provide guidance to ALA/PLA members on questions that are delivered to the committee through direct communication and the Social Work Interest Group. Examples include information on peer programs, security programs, intern supervision, and developing social work programs in libraries.
Meets PLA’s strategic goals for Advocacy and Awareness

What will your group be working on for the next six months?
Our main focus will be to promote the forthcoming Trauma-Informed Lens Workbook. We are planning a pre-conference session on the content of the book. Additionally, we will look into other ways to share the content of the workbook (webinar series, etc).

Does the group have any policy recommendations, ideas with financial impact, or other items to bring to the PLA Board for discussion or action
Not at this time

Do you have any suggestions for future products or resources (excluding conference programs) to be developed based on your group’s work?
Not at this time

Are there other PLA/ALA committees your group might collaborate with to benefit the work of all?
The Social Work Task Force could be a consultant for the Advocacy and Strategic Partnerships Committee and the Committee on Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice.

Have there been any issues related to meeting participation/attendance for any of the group’s members?
Yes (if yes, PLA will contact you for more information)

Is there anything PLA could have provided during this time that would have helped your group with its work?
Related to the attendance question, we have lost several members this year due to their library systems no longer funding their PLA memberships. Our task force is unique in that none of our members are librarians, and we are required to join a library professional organization to participate. This has resulted in the task force's group work being focused on an increasingly smaller number of social service professionals who, by the nature of their work in social services, are always taxed, and especially so during the pandemic response.

Submitted by Debra Keane (co-chairs Patrick Lloyd, Tiffany Russel) on 08/19/2021