It’s well known that “right to work” Mississippi is not a union-friendly state. And public sector workers – including university faculty, staff and student employees – would seem to have the very least reason to unionize. After all, the state is prohibited, by law, from recognizing employee bargaining units. Why pay dues to an organization … Continue reading Why State Workers Should Join Unions
I usually catch only the highlights of so-called debates among presidential candidates, the stuff of news cycle-friendly sound bytes. Devoid of real discussion or dialog, the prime-time televised contests are far too heavy on theatrics and way too thin on substance to take seriously; they're surely not "debates" in any meaningful sense of the term. … Continue reading Will tonight’s Dem debate feature anti-war, truly progressive perspectives?
A Clarion-Ledger story today focused on Speaker of the House Philip Gunn's outlook for the legislative session just underway. It doesn't sound good, certainly not from a social work/social welfare perspective. Gunn offered no policy goals beyond "creating jobs." What's the signal there? Are still more incentives and tax giveaways to business (the bigger, the … Continue reading Republicans dominate Mississippi government: What should social workers do?
As much of the world worried whether the U.S. would plunge into yet another war in the Middle East, it became clear to many Americans that only mass public demonstrations might be "heard" by the Trump administration. Within what seemed just hours after the assassination of Iranian general Soleimani, antiwar protests were staged by tens … Continue reading Organizing people is more important than ever
Calls for significant policy development to deal with a rapidly aging U.S. population have been steady for over twenty years now. Like so many other areas of social welfare provision, however, this one remains sorely neglected. But demographic trends are relentless, and unless we're prepared to let older people simply "die in place," something's got … Continue reading What to do with the old and poor?
It's a commonplace that poverty is a major detriment to health. But what about income and wealth inequality, apart from poverty per se? Both cross-national studies and ones focused specifically on the United States arrive at the same definitive conclusion - Inequality in and of itself is harmful to your health. In the U.S., people … Continue reading Inequality makes people sick
What's a beleaguered fossil fuel industry to do, what with growing and increasingly organized protests and demands to "keep it in the ground," lawsuits from every direction, divestment movements, and the like? Clamorous insistence from young people that governments take radical and urgent action to confront the climate crisis is especially troubling to some of … Continue reading Fossil fuel industry is resourceful, in so many ways…
The history of social work's role in disaster response is already a long one. While the formal literature still seems a bit scanty, there's clearly been an increase of attention to the topic over the past two decades - no surprise, given the surge in disaster frequency, and the numbers of people affected, due to … Continue reading Social work and disaster management
It may be impossible to tell from mainstream media sources, but issue organizing and protest has been on the rise in the U.S. for more than a decade, dating to at least the 2008 financial meltdown. Early on it was the Tea Party and the Occupy movement (both of which did grab their share of … Continue reading 2020 will likely see escalating organizing and protest in the U.S.
Aiming to address two global mega-trends - aging populations and urbanization - the World Health Organization released its guide to assessing and improving the "aging friendliness" of urban communities in 2005. Put generally, WHO contends that an age-friendly city will encourage active aging by adapting its structures and services to include older people with varying … Continue reading WHO’s aging-friendly communities guide turns 15 in 2020