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Social Work Policy Practice

Changing Our Community, Nation, and the World (Second Edition)
Jessica A. Ritter
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The second edition of Social Work Policy Practice: Changing Our Community, Nation, and the World demystifies policymaking for social work students and demonstrates why policy practice is a critical dimension of social work. The text provides a comprehensive introduction to political advocacy, the political process, and how laws are enacted to inspire social work students to enter the field with a mind for political advocacy and social justice.

The book is divided into three parts. In Part I, students learn a brief history of social welfare legislation in the United States and the role of social workers in policy development. Part II provides concrete information on how policies become law. It includes an overview of the levels and branches of government, in-depth descriptions of the policy change process, and various strategies advocates employ to enact change. Part III consists of real-world stories of advocates and advocacy organizations that have attempted to change policies on behalf of vulnerable populations.

This edition includes up-to-date information regarding policy issues in child welfare, aging, healthcare, mental health, poverty and income equality, rights for racial minorities, and immigration. New material addresses policy issues pertaining to gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and the #MeToo and #BlackLivesMatter social movements.

Engaging and accessible, Social Work Policy Practice is an ideal resource for courses that introduce policymaking to students of social work.

Jessica A. Ritter is a professor of social work at Metropolitan State University in Denver, where she teaches undergraduate- and graduate-level social work courses. Dr. Ritter earned her doctoral degree in social work and master’s degree in social work with a concentration in administration and planning from the University of Texas at Austin. As a practicing social worker, she is committed to improving and protecting children’s rights in the United States and around the world. Dr. Ritter has authored and coauthored numerous books, book chapters, and articles within the field.
“Excellent social welfare policy text for undergraduate social work majors: up-to-date, readable, and includes valuable information on social welfare history, values, diversity, advocacy, and fields of practice.”
John C. Rife, MSW, Ph.D., Professor of Social Work, University of North Carolina at Greensboro

“Social Work Policy Practice by Jessica Ritter is a timely, relevant, and applied social welfare policy practice textbook which will help train future social workers in the important work of social change.”
LeaAnne DeRigne, Ph.D., Professor of Social Work, Florida Atlantic University

“Dr. Ritter has a way of making social work policy come alive. Her quality of writing and ease of reading makes students feel an increased confidence and understanding while gaining valuable insight to multiple aspects of policy practice.”
Scott W. Gaffney, Assistant Professor of Social Work, Southeastern University

“Ritter provides an engaging, thorough, and passionate look at social welfare policy, with an emphasis on advocacy efforts. This is truly a text devoted to policy as it relates to social and economic justice.”
John Quinton Hodges, Ph.D., Professor of Social Work, University of North Alabama

“A contemporary analysis of important issues and policies impacting social workers that can easily be adopted for many other fields including human development, psychology, sociology, criminal justice, and education.”
Mary H. Garcia, Instructor of Human Development, Washington State University