16 April

In this edition, we cover:

  • AASW keeps you up-to-date with COVID-19, with lots of new resources
  • Work opportunities to cope with COVID-19
  • Be part of our second Facebook Live Q&A in our COVID-19 Facebook Group
  • Keep up with CPD and make the most of the Empowering Excellence 15% discount until the end of April.

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Coronavirus (COVID-19)


Coronavirus (COVID-19) - fever, cough, shortness of breath and sore throat.

The AASW is continuing to monitor the situation with COVID-19 and provide accurate and up-to-date information to members as soon as it becomes available. We recognise the effect that the recent developments with COVID-19 have had on members and the general community. It is a difficult time for many and we know that social workers are concerned about the impact of coronavirus on not only their wellbeing but the people they provide services to, their families, and the wider community. Social workers are, just as in the bushfires, working at the frontlines of this pandemic.

The AASW is monitoring Government announcements and developments in health and community support to keep you informed with up to date and accurate information. We have set up a webpage which links to the Department of Health’s fact sheets and resources, as well as responses to questions we are getting from members, and a member guide which provides in-depth information to help social workers navigate their practice during these difficult times.

Read more about the Coronavirus update.


New AASW member Facebook Group


AASW members COVID-19 Group

The AASW has started a new Facebook Group to discuss COVID-19.This group will provide daily updates for AASW members, access to key resources including professional development, opportunities to take part of live Q&As with AASW representatives, and networking for members.

We are holding a second Facebook Live Q&A in the group TONIGHT at 6.00pm AEST. Simply join the group and be online when it starts. If you have any questions, please send them to social.policy@aasw.asn.au and we will endeavour to answer them during the session.

Request to join today.


Work available: Canberra Health Services seeks social workers


It is anticipated that with the growing number of COVID-19 patients that there will be a need for more social workers to work in the acute space at Canberra Health Services. Social work provides expertise in the assessment and management of psychosocial distress. They plan to provide the following interventions in accordance with a priority indicator model:

  • Assessment – crisis, psychosocial, discharge, bereavement, family violence, child at risk
  • Crisis intervention
  • Complex discharge planning
  • Psychological first aid
  • Bereavement counselling and support
  • Resource mobilisation and referral
  • Advocacy
  • Psychoeducation
  • Consultation

During the COVID-19 health crisis, where very high levels of community disruption and bereavement are expected, social work will prioritise support to vulnerable and unsupported patients who require complex discharge; to people at risk from violence or neglect, and to families who are bereaved.

CHS is calling for social workers to come and work on a casual basis. The hours could be flexible as we move to covering 24 hours. There will be orientation and good supervision and support.

Read more about the Canberra Health Service opportunity


Horizon Career Centre: spike in COVID-19 roles


Horizon Career Centre: Dedicated Jobs website for social workers - girl smiling

A number of new roles have been advertised recently due to the COVID-19 crisis. Please keep checking Horizon Career Centre for new opportunities.

Members can create free locum listings.

We are also seeking a Member Services Team Leader.  Applications close on 23 April.


AASW submissions and inquiries


The AASW is currently working on the following submissions:

  • Select Committee on Autism
  • NDIS Workforce
  • Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability

The social policy team welcomes input from any members who have expertise or interest in these topics. Please contact the social policy team at social.policy@aasw.asn.au if you would like to contribute to any of these submissions.

The AASW has recently made the following submissions:

  • Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety
  • Paid Parental Leave Amendment (Flexibility Measures) Bill 2020

All submissions are posted to the social policy webpage when we have permission to make them public (as required).

Current submissions

The AASW continues to work on a number of submissions however most have taken a backseat while we work to support members through the issues surrounding COVID-19 and social work practice.


Online infection control training


The Department of Health commissioned the development of online infection control training.

An Infection Control training module has been developed for use by care workers across the health, aged care, disability and childcare sector: https://covid-19training.com.au/


DVA and COVID-19


DVA have mirrored the MBS in rolling out telehealth to all recipients of DVA and new items for telephone consultations where video-conferencing is not available have been announced. A new schedule has been released as well. More information on DVA and COVID-19 is available on our webpage.




The NDIA has made a number of changes to help NDIS providers to continue to deliver supports to participants through this time. A FAQ page is available to help providers understand these changes.


COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Multilingual Resource Library


Ethnolink has developed a resource on COVID-19 in 24 languages so far, with more to come. 

Access the Covid-19 multilingual library.

Please get in touch with Ethnolink business@ethnolink.com.au if you require resources in other languages.


DVA provider webinars: services available to support older veterans


DVA in conjunction with OPAN are hosting a series of webinars on the services available to support older veterans. Topics include Veterans Home Care and Respite Care. Registrations are required but if you miss any they will be hosted on the OPAN website once available.


Resources to support shared parenting in the time of COVID-19


Families are spending more time at home together during this time of COVID-19, but for families with shared parenting there are extra challenges. Both parents might be balancing supervision of the children’s learning, family time, and work commitments. The Institute of Child Protection Studies (ICPS) has developed two new practice tools to help you support parents and children:

These resources and other new topics will soon available on the Safeguarding Children and Young People Portal.




Disability webinarRoyal Commission into Disability

The Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability has released its first progress report.

The AASW held a webinar on Thursday, 26 March to get members' input to guide our submission. Thank you to all who attended, your feedback was very useful and informative. We will be in touch with participants shortly on the next steps in the consultation process. It’s not too late to get involved though, email us at social.policy@aasw.asn.au if you would like to contribute.  

You can watch the webinar if you registered and missed it.

If you didn't register, you can do so, then watch it.

We also want member input into the NDIS Workforce Inquiry submission.

Read more about NDIS Workforce Inquiry.


CPD - World Social Work Day special


Promoting the Importance of Human Relationships: WSWD special - get your social distancing on with the Empowering Excellence program

We are extending our World Social Work Day offer for April. Get your social distancing on with our online Empowering Excellence courses! AASW members get 15% off the entire Empowering Excellence program during the promotion.


Completing your CPD with face-to-face activities postponed for now


Self-isolated learning

AASW on-demand training

  • AASW Empowering Excellence online courses – 15% discount for members extended throughout April. Log in to the member centre and purchase your course. You can complete your course anytime, on any device and when you need it.
  • A full list of all AASW on-demand courses can be found on our website

AASW live-online activities

  • Many of our face-to-face seminars and workshops will be converted to an online format. See your branch event listings for information.
  • Practice Group discussions and networking events will now be run online, please contact your local branch for more information.

Read more about how to keep up with CPD during the COVID-19 crisis


Documenting your CPD


CPD recording


Now is the time to begin documenting your CPD, if you haven't been doing so already. See our instructions on how to do it. 


Log into our website


Did you know that once logged on to the website, not only will you be able to benefit from access to the Member Only resources on the website, you can:

  • Register and pay the discounted member price for events
  • Create a listing for yourself in our "Find a Social Worker" or "Find a Supervisor" directories
  • Update your contact/profile information
  • Manage your subscriptions
  • Access your online CPD record
  • Register for the Social Worker, Accredited Social Worker and other trademarks
  • Download your membership and insurance certificates
  • Download all invoice copies?

Log into the website.


Global survey on the working conditions of social workers


The International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW) is leading a long-term, global campaign, working closely with national member organisations, to improve the working conditions and environment of social workers. Working through IFSW member organisations and social media, a pilot global study of social workers was launched in November 2019. Social workers everywhere are invited to complete the online survey, which is available in several languages. The research is being undertaken in a partnership between IFSW and Bath Spa University Centre for Health and Cognition (in association with Ulster University Social Work Department).

Complete the survey now.


Find a Social Worker: Make sure your details are up to date!


UpdateWith an increasing number of people seeking to access services via telehealth, we are referring members of the public to our Find a Social Worker portal. Make sure your details are up-to-date so that people requiring support can contact you. If you need any help setting up or editing your listing, contact the membership team on 1800 630 124 or email membership@aasw.asn.au.


Australia’s Human Rights Scorecard


Over 200 NGOs have endorsed a report released by Human Rights Law Centre, the Kingsford Legal Centre and the Caxton Legal Centre last week. The report was compiled ahead of Australia’s Universal Periodic Review by the UN Human Rights Council which will take place in early 2021. It calls on the Australian Government to strengthen its commitment to human rights, especially in light of the impacts of COVID-19 on marginalised groups. The AASW was a contributor to the report and is one of the endorsing organisations.


Bushfire recovery


Bushfire recovery

The AASW is continuing to monitor the bushfire crisis as we move into recovery stage. Our thoughts remain with those impacted. We recognise the important work social workers are doing during this time, with mental health support and general recovery efforts.

The Australian Government has announced free counselling and additional mental health supports for those affected by the bushfires. From 17 January 2020 those people who have been affected by the bushfires or who were/are first responders, emergency management employees or volunteers who worked during the bushfires will be able to access Medicare benefits for ten sessions in addition to those already available under the Better Access Program. The new item numbers are available and more information is available. Email mhadvocacy@aasw.asn.au if you have any further questions.

Information about the bushfires and what is available

Please see the Australian Department of Human Services’ guide to support for people affected by bushfires.

Read more about the bushfire recovery.


NDIS registration support


Allied Health Professions Australia logo

Allied Health Professionals Australia (APHA) have set up a website to assist with the NDIS registration process. There are a series of webinars available on their website as well. The site takes you through a comprehensive step by step process on getting set up as a registered NDIS provider and is an easy to use resource for what can be a complicated system. 


Social Work Focus


Social Work Focus: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples


We are seeking articles for the next edition of Social Work Focus. How are you practising social work during Coronavirus and bushfire recovery? We want to hear your practice experiences during this period.

Find out how to contribute to Social Work Focus.


Australian Social Work


Australian Social WorkThe latest edition of Australian Social Work is out now. Read it now!

Australian Social Work is calling for papers from practitioners and scholars on the topic of Embodiment and Social Work. The Special Issue guest Editors are Dr Jo Mensinga (James Cook University) jo.mensinga@jcu.edu.au and Professor Loretta Pyles lpyles@albany.edu

We are accepting submissions.

Deadline for submission of manuscripts is 30 July 2020.

Read more about what we are looking for in Australian Social Work.


Participate in research


We have research participation opportunities available:

Participating in research counts towards CPD.


Resources to help with Coronavirus lockdown


Below are resources to assist with mental health and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and remote communities and

Mental health and wellbeing Keep our mob safe, wash your hands




#InThisTogether: Tips for mental health and wellbeing


Free Phoenix Australia COVID-19 resources


Phoenix Australia has set up COVID-19 web page, with resources and training which is being updated. 

They have developed a range of information and resources, including a series of targeted videos and tip sheets for practitioners and for the community.


Client violence towards workers in the child, family and community welfare sector


This paper explores the prevalence and presentation of client violence towards workers, considering any violent or aggressive behaviour from clients, direct associates of clients, and friends or family members of clients. It compares current research on client violence towards workers to official data reports, and considers why there might be a discrepancy between the two sets of data. It details the effects that client violence has on workers personally and the implications for their practice. Finally, it outlines strategies for improving responses to client violence towards workers, including practical responses that can be implemented at an organisational, educational and policy level.

Access the full paper via the CFCA Website


AASW CPD events


All AASW branch and online events can be found in the events calendar or on SWOT.

Australian Capital Territory

ACT Branch May Student and New Graduate Practice Group Meeting
Wednesday, 13 May

ACT Branch June Private Practice Group Meeting
Tuesday, 16 June

New South Wales

Connect:ED Webinar Series
Wednesday, 22 April

North Queensland

Mackay Social Workers Networking Group
Tuesday, 5 May


Webinar - Legal Ed Seminar - Slater+Gordon - The Chronic Psycho-social Impact of Traumatic Injury in the Compensation Context

Three online training modules:

Or you can register for all three training modules at a discounted cost.

South Australia

Low Intensity CBT Interventions
Tuesday, 21 April

Legal Evening Series - Social Workers being successful at Tribunals
Wednesday, 27 May


Social Interventions Using Brain Science with Dr Geraldene Mackay
Tuesday, 12 May

Skilful Use of Mindfulness in Therapeutic Work with Clients and Individual Practice
Tuesday, 9 June

Western Australia

Non-Fatal Strangulation in Domestic Family Violence - SJOG Midland
Monday, 15 June

Non-Fatal Strangulation in Domestic Family Violence - Fiona Stanley Hospital
Monday, 22 June




Trauma Education with Dr Leah Giarratano offered in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and Auckland in 2020.

Treating PTSD (Day 1-2) and Treating Complex Trauma (Day 3-4). Offered in capital cities in October and November 2020, or as a pre-recorded online on-demand package over three months, or live streamed over two days each. These two acclaimed, highly practical, evidence-based workshops will underpin your clinical practice in this field for both adult and adolescent populations. Endorsed by AASW, ACA & ACMHN. Please note that you must attend Day 1-2 in order to attend Day 3-4.  Leah Giarratano is a clinical psychologist with 25 years clinical and teaching expertise in traumatology.

For details and to register, please visit http://www.talominbooks.com 


The Self-Compassion for Social Workers & Health Professionals

This 6-week online brief course of Mindful Self-Compassion is presented by senior certified MSC teacher John Julian with Paola Cheng

2019 research showed this program led to reduced stress, depression, secondary traumatic stress and burnout, and increases compassion, mindfulness, and job satisfaction in healthcare professionals.

Starting on Thursday 14 May 2020 from 8:00pm to 9:00pm then weekly. Special Cost: $106.00 to $133.00

For questions: 0439901795 or email john.julian56@gmail.com

Register today.


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