WHO’s aging-friendly communities guide turns 15 in 2020

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

Plant closings and opioid deaths are closely connected

It's not news that economic displacement is linked with higher death rates among people suffering it - however distressing it remains that our economic system is a virtual engine of displacement, with scant help afforded its victims. But now a study just published by JAMA Internal Medicine specifically links auto plant closings and opioid overdose … Continue reading Plant closings and opioid deaths are closely connected

The Evil Twins of Climate Crisis and Militarism

Too few in the various movements attempting to address the climate crisis make a direct connection between climate and U.S. militarism.  Peace activist Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CodePink (https://www.codepink.org) is one of the more notable exceptions.  Benjamin identifies at least 10 points of connection.  Here are just the first five: The U.S. military provides protection … Continue reading The Evil Twins of Climate Crisis and Militarism

Social work should be promoting mutual aid networks

As overlapping political, economic, and ecological crises deepen, the ability of people in localized community to meet their needs through mutual aid is growing in importance, and may well become the very linchpin of survival, to borrow Bill McKibben's phrase, "on a tough new planet." In one form or another, mutual aid - people exchanging … Continue reading Social work should be promoting mutual aid networks

America needs to facilitate union organizing

The "Protecting the Right to Organize Act," sponsored by U.S. Senator Patty Murray and Congressman Bobby Scott, is a vital piece of legislation that could do wonders for union organizing in this country. Union organizing – what's good about that?  Quite a lot, actually.  While it’s arguable that the U.S. economy has worked well enough … Continue reading America needs to facilitate union organizing

Mississippi needs to dance more for the health of it

Few facts are more evident than Mississippi's overall poor health.  Cite a negative health indicator - cancer, diabetes and its myriad complications, high blood pressure, health attacks, stroke, dementia, and on and on - and you can bet Mississippi occupies space at the head of the list.  Not for nothing, then, does the state Department … Continue reading Mississippi needs to dance more for the health of it

COP 25 failure: Is climate breakdown now inevitable?

The pseudo-"debate" over the reality of the climate crisis is effectively over.  It seems that only President Trump, his Republican minions and sycophants, and a motley collection of wingnuts are willing to carry on with outright crisis denialism.  (In fact, I suspect that one of the President's biggest lies is that he doesn't accept the … Continue reading COP 25 failure: Is climate breakdown now inevitable?

Does social work understand “class”?

The social work profession insistently stresses "cultural competence," demanding that  its practitioners grasp the significance of a range of important contextual factors - race, ethnicity, gender, identity in the sense of language, traditions, norms, etc., among the most prominent.  Social work educational texts and classroom discussions are replete with nuanced attention to such concerns.  But … Continue reading Does social work understand “class”?