The social work profession was founded in social change. Throughout the profession’s history, social workers have sought to ensure that all people have equal access to the resources and opportunities that allow them to meet their basic needs. NASW upholds this challenge by advocating for the association to members of Congress and regulatory agencies that so often hold the authority to influence policy.

NASW has developed a policy agenda, which asserts the association’s advocacy priorities for the legislative cycle. NASW’s policy agenda is consistent with the NASW policies in Social Work Speaks, which is developed by members of the association at Delegate Assembly.

NASW-ND Advocacy


Advocacy Committee Action

Interim Committee/Interstate Licensure Compact

    • An interstate compact is a legal contract between two or more states/territories that would enable social workers to practice in each other’s jurisdiction, giving members of the profession more license mobility.
    • State legislatures must enact compact legislation to become a member state of a compact. Seven states must pass the compact legislation in order for the compact to become active. 
      • On April 12, 2024 Kansas became the seventh state to pass Social Work Interstate Licensing Compact Legislation. That was a threshold that had to be met for states to create a Compact Commission that will govern the compact and ensure coordination between the participating states. In all, 10 states have passed the compact legislation. They are Missouri on July 7, 2023, followed by South Dakota on February 4, 2024; Utah on March 13; Washington state on March 19; Kentucky on March 28, Virginia on April 8, Nebraska on April 15, Vermont on April 23, and Maine on April 26.
    • Currently in the state of ND, the interim Workforce Committee is conducting a study on the viability of the compact being enacted in our state. 

Removal of ASWB Exam Requirement for Social Work Licensure

    • In August 2022, the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) released its 2022 ASWB Exam Pass Rate Analysis: Final Report which provided data on US and Canadian test-taker participation and performance on the ASWB social work licensing exams between 2011 and 2021 (with a particular focus on two time periods, 2011 to 2021 and 2018 to 2021). The Final Report reviews performance on five social work exams: Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Advanced Generalist, and Clinical.
    • Differences were observed in pass rates among racial/ethnic subgroups, as well as in pass rates among age and language subgroups. Disparities in pass rates, both nationally and in North Dakota cause major concern in usage of the ASWB exam. 
    • Many factors may contribute to the disparity in pass rates. Until these factors are more fully researched, understood, and addressed, there is little doubt that the disparities will continue to exist, and North Dakota will continue to experience a serious and unfortunate shortage of licensed social workers from diverse groups.
    • NASW-ND is working closely with the North Dakota Board of Social Work Examiners in hopes to remove the ASWB exam requirement to obtain licensure at the LBSW and LMSW level. 

Interim Studies

SB 2012 - Social Work Licensure Compact & Medicaid Provider Reimbursement - Legislative Management Study
HCR 3017 - Increased inpatient mental health care for children - Legislative Management Study

Legislative Session

The Advocacy Committee meets weekly during legislative session to review legislative proposals of interest to social workers and social work clients. 

North Dakota is one of four states in which the legislature meets biennially, or in odd-numbered years. The next legislative session will occur in 2025!

Chapter Action
  • ACTION ALERT! - SAY NO to Conversion Therapy: HB 1332
    This bill seeks to overturn social work rules that state “conversion or reparative therapy” is a violation of the social work code of ethics if practiced by a ND licensed social worker.
  • 5 Steps to Becoming an Effective Voter: November 4, 2022
    With the election upcoming, timing is critical to cast your ballot. Make your voice heard this election season by following these 5 simple steps to effective voting.
  • STATEMENT: September 27, 2022
    NASW-ND was appalled to hear of the Indigenous ancestral remains of 70 relatives and numerous artifacts desecrated in 250 boxes on the UND campus. Click the above link to read more.
Board Action
RESOLUTION: March 22, 2022
  • The NASW-ND Board of Directors adopted a resolution addressing the impact of proposed legislation around the country that attempts to silence or limit conversations related to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

STATEMENT: January 20,2024

  • The NASW_ND Board of Directors released a statement regarding the removal of the ASWB exam requirement for social work licensure in ND. 

NASW-ND Advocacy Committee
  • Tricia Berg, Chair
  • Mandi Carroll
  • Hilary Halfner
  • Stephanie Little
  • Megan Olson
  • Mariah Perdue
  • Amy Phillips
  • Bret Weber
Legislative Updates Editor
Legislative Tools:
  • (Link) How do I track a bill in North Dakota
  • (Link) How to watch a bill hearing
  • (Link) How to Submit Testimony on a Bill

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Join the Committee

The Advocacy Committee welcomes NASW-ND member participation and encourages you to join in a meeting. 

For more information, please email your interest to

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Government Relations and Political Affairs




Check out the NASW National Action Center for key issues, current legislation, information on what actions you can take, and information on your elected officials.


You can participate in electing candidates who are social workers or who support social workers!