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Advocacy News

October 20, 2021

Patients and Caregivers for Paid Leave
AOSW is proud to join more than 20 patient and caregiver organizations telling Congress and the Biden Administration that we need paid leave to help families balance care and work.
The letter reads in part:
“The 20 undersigned patient advocacy and partner organizations represent patients with serious illnesses and conditions including cancer, ALS, muscular dystrophy, epilepsy, hemophilia, Alzheimer’s, Long COVID and many others. While policymakers debate this legislation, every day new patients are diagnosed with these diseases – and patients and their families are faced with questions about how to balance work, treatment, and finances. While you are negotiating budget targets in the billions, we ask you to remember the working patients and caregivers who are struggling to balance their own budgets as they treat or recover from their illness, or give care to loved ones, and try to still earn a paycheck.

"The availability of paid family and medical leave for these people is vital, as treatment for and recovery from serious illnesses and conditions are often difficult and time consuming. The flexibility to balance treatment and employment is essential for patients and caregivers. For example, multiple studies show that cancer patients and caregivers who have paid leave have higher rates of job retention and lower rates of financial burden than those who do not have access to paid leave. Research demonstrates that paid family leave helps Alzheimer’s patients and their caregivers better navigate complex medical care. Not all patients or caregivers have access to paid family and medical leave, and without it they risk financial hardship or not getting the care they or their loved ones need.”

Read the full press release. #CareCantWait

Public Service Loan Forgiveness
In early October 2021, the Department of Education announced steps to overhaul the notoriously troubled ‎Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. AOSW and its members helped make this happen. Thanks to everyone ‎who participated in the campaign to demand the Biden Administration restore the promise of ‎Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF). Your efforts made it possible action was possible ‎because of your advocacy on behalf of public service workers across the country. Read the Department of Ed Press Release on the announcement.

Learn About Latest Sign-On Letters

With the knowledge that there is strength in numbers, AOSW often joins efforts with other allied organizations to achieve a shared goal and increase awareness of our professional opinion. Our current policy priorities are: 

  • Extending telehealth flexibilities beyond the public health emergency
  • Licensure reciprocity
  • Student loan forgiveness
  • Medicare reimbursement rate for clinical social workers

Read more about AOSW’s support of advocacy issues relevant to our members and patients.  ‎