Document Type

Conference Proceeding

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In 2014 the North American Association of Christians in Social Work (NACSW) convention offered a workshop whose abstract stated coverage of controversies, ethics, governmental policies, and faith related to reparative therapy. In this workshop, presenters expressed support for using reparative therapy at clients’ requests. In response to this, a member of the Caucus of LGBT Faculty and Doctoral Students in Social Work (LGBT Caucus) organized a letter with over 120 social work faculty and practitioner signatures and submitted it to NACSW expressing concern that reparative/conversion therapy was offered as a viable mental health treatment at a professional social work conference, and requesting that future proposals regarding LGBT issues be reviewed for ethical and culturally sensitive practice. Simultaneously, Shelley Craig of the CSWE Commission on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Expression (CSOGIE) convened a caucus group for dialogue around larger religious issues in social work education and accreditation. Several NACSW members were also concerned about the reparative therapy workshop and supportive of an opportunity to work with CSWE in support of LGBT populations. Monthly collaborative conference calls between the LGBT Caucus and NACSW board members have resulted in a revision of NACSW convention and journal review practices, the development of a FAQ document addressing these issues, and continuing discussion of the ongoing work needed in this area of practice.

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