Pritzker signs bill to help Illinois social workers in times of scarcity


gvo. JB Pritzker signed Senate Bill 661, a measure to help school social workers earn and pay for their degrees, but it could come at a cost to taxpayers.

The law requires the Illinois Student Assistants Commission to award up to 250 scholarships to social workers. The law also requires ICCS to fund up to $ 6,500 in loan repayments for social work loans.

Illinois faces a shortage of social workers, said state representative Lindsey LaPointe. She said this measure is important to help resolve this shortage and improve the condition for the future.

“This law will help increase our pool of social workers in schools,” said LaPointe. “This will allow our whole state to better support our young people.”

State Representative Dan Brady opposed signing SB661. He said he was playing the favorites during a national shortage.

“This particular scholarship program prioritizes some social workers over others,” Brady said.

Funding for these scholarships has been a problem for other lawmakers as well. Brady said if funds were available they would have to decide where to withdraw the money from.

“Where does the money come from for this?” Brady said, “If the money is to come from the higher education budget, where do we get it from? “

LaPointe addressed funding issues and said the money would come from the use of federal funds.

“When and if the funds become available, maybe the next federal dollars,” LaPointe said. “This bill will help create a framework for funds to flow and we can help rebuild our social work pipeline in schools.”

Even with federal funding, Illinoisians could see their taxes go toward this program.

The law comes into force on January 1, 2022.

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Key words: States, News, Illinois, Social Work

Original author: Andrew Hensel, The central square

Original location: Pritzker signs bill to help Illinois social workers in times of scarcity

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