January, 2001                                               Volume 7, Issue 1

Social Welfare Policy

The Newsletter of the Social Welfare Policy and Policy Practice Group

Kahn Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Alfred J. Kahn, Professor Emeritus, Special Research Scholar and Special Lecturer at the Columbia University School of Social Work, has been named to receive the Social Welfare Policy and Policy Practice Group Lifetime Achievement Award.

Ronald Dear, chair of the Selection Committee, said the committee considered at least two dozen potential recipients before deciding on Dr. Kahn.

"We feel that Al Kahn’s extraordinary fruitful career needs to be recognized. Dr. Kahn’s contribution to the field spans over a half-century of consistent achievement. His positive impact on social welfare policy in the United States and throughout the world is impossible to measure."

Rick Hoefer, president of the Policy and Policy Practice Group, echoed Dear’s assessment. "Dr. Kahn, singly and with collaborators such as Dr. Sheila Kamerman, has influenced every social policy scholar in the United States, and many more overseas. Dr. Kahn’s productivity has been extraordinary: his vita lists over 30 books, 250 monographs, articles and book chapters."

The award will be presented to Dr. Kahn, in abstentia, at the Council for Social Work Annual Program Meeting in Dallas on March 9, when the Policy and Policy Practice Group meets. Dr. Kahn, who will not able to attend the meeting, notes "While I have been similarly honored by NASW (1996) and CSWE (1990), I regard and value the selection by the policy and Policy Practice Group as recognition by my policy peers—and thus special. Please thank the members for me since I shall not be able to attend in Dallas."

Born February 8, 1919, Alfred J. Kahn received a B.S.S. in 1939 from the City College of New York. After serving in the US Army Air Force from 1942-1945, he earned a M.S. from the Columbia School of Social Welfare in 1946, followed in 1952 with a Doctor of Social Welfare Degree, also from Columbia University. He began teaching at Columbia in 1947 as an instructor, moving upward in rank quickly: in 1947 Kahn became an assistant professor, associate professor in 1952 and professor in 1954.

The Lifetime Achievement Award was instituted in 1999. This award is to be presented to a social worker who has made a significant, sustained contribution to the advancement of the study or practice of social policy.

The first award was presented at the 1999 CSWE APM at the joint meeting of the Policy and Policy Practice Group and Influencing State   Policy. It was given to Bruce S. Jansson. The award given to Dr. Kahn will be the second time the Policy and Policy Practice Group has bestowed its highest honor.

President Rick Hoefer hopes the award will continue to be given. "There is no lack of people who deserve this honor. Starting this award, so that the social work policy community has a formal way of recognizing their own, is an important step forward. With each year, the award should be seen as an even greater honor than it is now. We would like to develop a Web page to immortalize the careers of award recipients even further."

Social Welfare Policy & Policy Practice Group Meeting at CSWE-APM

The members of the Policy and Policy Practice Group and anyone else who is interested in attending should come to the PPPG membership meeting to be held in Dallas in conjunction with the CSWE APM. The meeting will be held Friday, March 9 at 12:00 p.m. (noon) in Majestic 2. We look forward to seeing you there.

Agenda items include electing a new Policy and Policy Group President, an update on the Social Policy Journal and planning for the 2002 Policy and Policy Practice Symposium.

"The time of the meeting should facilitate participation by members and interested others (who can become members at the meeting)" according to group president Rick Hoefer. "Some years we receive a 7 a.m. time slot. That really reduces people’s desire to attend!" While no food will be served, Hoefer hopes for a good turnout to help map the organization’s future.

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Social Welfare Policy & Policy Practice Group Symposium Papers at 2001 CSWE-APM

Symposia Co-Chairs, Peg Pittman-Munke and Rick Hoefer, announce an exciting list of presenters at the 2001 APM. The chairs wish to thank all who submitted papers to the symposium and hope you will continue. Below is the final list of presentations for the symposium.

Sandra Butler, University of Maine, "Evaluating a Post-Secondary Education Program for Welfare Recipients."

Elizabeth Lightfoot, University of Minnesota, "The Policy Borrowing Model: A Tool to Promote Successful Social Welfare Policymaking."

Richard Hoefer and Catheleen Jordan, University of Texas at Arlington, "Home and Work: Family Friendly Policies in Human Services Agencies."

Margaret Sherraden, University of Missouri at St. Louis, Betsy Slosar, Missouri Association of Social Work, and Antonia Chastain, University of Missouri at St. Louis, "Community Economic Development (CED): Taking Stock of Policy Innovation."

Johnny Jones and Wendy Crook, Florida State University, "Social Welfare Policy and Homelessness: One Family’s Story."

University, Robert Schneider, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Sunny Harris Rome, George Mason University, "Survey of Social Workers as State Legislators: New Resources for Policy Education."

Katherine Byers, Indiana University, Dwight Hymans, Ball State University and Marion Wagner, Indiana University, "400 Voices at the Statehouse: Empowering Students in Policy Practice

Faculty Development Institutes at APM

Four faculty development institutes at the 2001 Annual Program Meeting of CSWE will be of special interest to members of our group. All of the Institutes take place on Thursday, March 8, 2001.

From 9 a.m. to 12 noon, Deborah Page-Adams (University of Kansas) and Michael Sherraden and Elizabeth Johnson (Washington University) will present Asset-Building Anti-Poverty Strategies: Implications for Research, Policy and Practice in Social Work Education. According to CSWE materials, this institute provides participants with overviews of asset-building theory, Individual Development Accounts (IDAs); federal and state asset-based policies and policy proposals ;and two national IDA policy demonstrations.

During the afternoon of March 8, Susan Fineran, Rebecca Bolen and Mary Urban-Keary (Boston University) will present Community Build: An Experiential Exercise for Teaching about Oppression and Empowerment. This institute describes the use of a simulation called "Community Build" to teach about social injustice and discrimination.

 Teaching Aging Content in Practice and Policy is the title of the institute presented from 1 to 4 p.m. by Nancy Kropf (University of Georgia) and Robert Schneider (Virginia Commonwealth University). This institute will provide an overview of practice and policy issues that can be used to increase aging content in the curriculum. It will highlight content on normative ageing, at-risk and problem situations with older clients. In addition, policy content will include political strategies to impact policy for older adults, and specific eligibility and entitlement programs for the older population.

Yolanda Padilla (University of Texas at Austin) will present the institute called Community Based Research in Policy Analysis and Practice, also from 1 to 4 p.m. The purpose of this institute is to consider the potential of community-based research for enhancing traditional method of research in all phases of social policy analysis and practice.

All of these CSWE Institutes will offer something of value to macro social work educators and to policy faculty in particular.


An Institute for Social Work Educators and Practitioners

"Politics, Policy, and Social Change" (The Policy Conference) will be convened by the College of Social Work at the University of South Carolina. This year's conference will be held in Charleston, SC from June 16 -19, and proposals will be accepted until April 1. Influencing State Policy will present the awards for the annual State Policy Plus contest at the conference luncheon on June 18th. The conference brochure/call is available online at www.sc.edu/cosw/polconf2001.html

and online registration is available at www.pware.com/2118

The Policy conference offers an unique opportunity to learn approaches to teach policy and policy analysis. This year a concerted is being made to include social action and advocacy groups so that educators and those in the "front lines" of social change can collaborate. This is also a great opportunity for those who are already teaching, directing, and coordinating efforts to influence state policy to network with other educators and practitioners.




The first issue of the Social Policy Journal, the official journal of the Policy and Policy Practice Group, is scheduled to be distributed in January, 2002.

"We are right on target for our first issue’s publication," reports Rick Hoefer, editor. "We have an outstanding editorial board, interesting articles, and a growing sense of excitement that the only American journal devoted to social policy will soon be launched."

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Membership Benefits

The Social Policy and Policy Practice Group is always trying to do something with almost nothing. What we (those who volunteer to keep the APM symposium running, the electrons moving in the right places and all these types of things that promote the study of policy-making and politics in social work) ask in return for this effort is that you send in a check for $35. This should be made out to Rick Hoefer (Policy and Policy Practice Group), and sent to Rick Hoefer, School of Social Work, Box 19129, University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX 76019.

We have recently enhanced the benefits you receive for your membership dues. First, you get a subscription to the Social Policy Journal, the only American journal devoted to social policy issues and the official journal of the Social Policy and Policy Practice Group.

Other benefits include the chance to chair or review papers for the Social Policy and Policy Practice Symposium at the CSWE APM. The work is not difficult, and the glimpse you get into the inner workings of CSWE is valuable indeed.

Networking opportunities are enhanced when you attend the CSWE APM and come to the Policy and Policy Practice Group meeting.

Finally, you get the sense of knowing you did the right thing and knowing that we will continue to fight the good fight within CSWE to maintain policy as a vital part of social workers’ education. As an example, several group members have been very active, in conjunction with Influencing State Policy, in evaluating the new EPAS. If you examine the first and second drafts of this document, you’ll see considerable changes, driven by the input of policy faculty across the country.


Manuscripts are needed for the Social Policy Journal. For a copy of the call for papers, editorial information, a list of editorial board members and updates on the status of your manuscript see the official web site of the Social Policy Journal:


SWPPG Listserv Is Ready

John McNutt has set up a listserv for the Policy and Practice Group. The address for the listserv is swpolicy@listserv.bc.edu and instructions for subscribing can be found on our webpage. Please be sure to follow the instructions carefully. Subscribe and join the discussion on issues about Policy and Policy practice.