Anti-Racist Resources

Where We Stand on Racism

NASW is committed to social justice for all and to ending racism. Across the country, we are mobilized and increasing our efforts in the face of America’s racism pandemic.

Get Resources and learn about our Activities

NASW-WI is committed to ending racism through public education, social justice advocacy and professional training.

Our members understand cultural and ethnic diversity and strive to end discrimination, oppression, poverty, and other forms of social injustice. These activities may include direct practice, community organizing, supervision, consultation, administration, advocacy, social and political action, policy development and implementation, education, research and evaluation. The resources here can assist all social workers in their anti-racist efforts.

Read Board President Dawn Shelton William’s article from our Latest Newsletter

Read Executive Director Marc Herstand’s Blog on Black Lives Matter


In a joint message NASW, the Association of Social Work Boards and the Council on Social Work Education said just as the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg fought for racial equity in society, the social work profession must look inward to fight institutionalized systemic racism at the heart of its constructs. This includes recognizing that people of color — including Ida B. Wells and George Edmund Haynes — played a key role in creating the profession in the same way as Jane Addams. Take time to read their message.


Briefs and Reports on Racial Justice

NASW Demands End to Excessive Use of Force by Law Enforcement

Social Workers Must Help Dismantle Systems of Oppression and Fight Racism Within Social Work Profession

NASW Seeks to Dismantle Racist Policing


Racism is a Public Health Crisis

NASW joins the American Psychological Association and the American Psychiatric Association in calling on nation to declare systemic racism a public health crisis.

Read our op-ed in the Orlando Sentinel


An Important Message About Racism

It has been extremely disappointing and very concerning to learn of racist and unethical comments made by members of our professional social work community. This has caused even greater harm to colleagues facing one of the most traumatic times of their careers and lives.

Read the message from our Ethics, Diversity & Inclusion Department


NASW Seeks to Dismantle Racist Policing

Racism is real and must be eliminated. Police brutality is real and must be eliminated. Oppressive policing is real and must be eliminated.
Read the news release

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Social Work in the (In)Justice System

Recent incidents of racist police brutality have highlighted the need for social work to examine its relationship with the larger criminal (in)justice system. This Educator|Resource shows how the adult and juvenile systems have been used as tools to control people of color, especially Black communities. It also addresses the longstanding debate that has currently surfaced regarding whether we need to reform or dismantle our broken justice system.

Provided here are useful resources to help social work students effectively engage in the adult criminal and juvenile justice systems. The resources are organized in a way that covers the entirety of both systems from prevention to reentry. It starts with entry into the system and an overview of prevention efforts, moves to conditions of confinement, then to unduly long-term sentencing, and finally to reentry, which signals the continuation of a self-perpetuating cycle. Works on gender-responsive approaches to the different needs of men/boys and women/girls are included.

Teaching Resources

The resources include recommended books, articles, reports, films, podcasts, and websites. Links have been provided where available. To provide further insight into how to structure a class, links to syllabi that critically consider these systems of (in)justice are included. The syllabus by contributor Dr. Aaron Gottlieb for his course Policy Approaches to Reforming the Adult Criminal Justice System is also included. The resources are organized as they apply to the adult criminal justice system, women in the criminal justice system, and the juvenile justice system.

Syllabus: Policy Approaches to Reforming the Adult Criminal Justice System


Mental Health Issues Facing the Black Community

  • How Racism Causes Mental Health Issues
  • The Importance of Culturally Competent Care
  • Why Don’t Black People Seek Mental Health Help
  • Black Mental Health Providers

Click here for more information and resources


This document is intended to serve as a resource to white people and parents to deepen our anti-racism work. If you haven’t engaged in anti-racism work in the past, start now. Feel free to circulate this document on social media and with your friends, family, and colleagues.

Resources for white parents to raise anti-racist children:

Videos to watch:

Podcasts to subscribe to:

Books to read:

Films and TV series to watch:

  • 13th (Ava DuVernay) — Netflix
  • American Son (Kenny Leon) — Netflix
  • Black Power Mixtape: 1967-1975 — Available to rent
  • Blindspotting (Carlos López Estrada) — Hulu with Cinemax or available to rent
  • Clemency (Chinonye Chukwu) — Available to rent
  • Dear White People (Justin Simien) — Netflix
  • Fruitvale Station (Ryan Coogler) — Available to rent
  • I Am Not Your Negro (James Baldwin doc) — Available to rent or on Kanopy
  • If Beale Street Could Talk (Barry Jenkins) — Hulu
  • Just Mercy (Destin Daniel Cretton) — Available to rent for free in June in the U.S.
  • King In The Wilderness  — HBO
  • See You Yesterday (Stefon Bristol) — Netflix
  • Selma (Ava DuVernay) — Available to rent for free in June in the U.S.
  • The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution — Available to rent
  • The Hate U Give (George Tillman Jr.) — Available to rent for free
  • When They See Us (Ava DuVernay) — Netflix

Organizations to follow on social media:

More anti-racism resources to check out:

Document compiled by Sarah Sophie Flicker, Alyssa Klein in May 2020.