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Call Your Congressmember... Invite them to a Cancer Event in Your Community

Posted 10 July 2018 by Michael Grignon

The unseasonably chilly weather and persistent misting could not rain on their parade as survivors, loved ones and volunteers gathered in Upstate New York this May in support of defeating cancer.  These Cancer Fighters were joined by our Congressmember, Paul Tonko (NY-20), who met several constituents to hear their cancer journeys and how they have been impacted by this disease.  Later, as part of the survivor recognition ceremony, Congressmember Tonko awarded medals to cancer survivors and discussed the continued importance of federal funding of cancer research. 
 
As we, as social workers, continue to support our patients on an individual level, it is essential to keep in mind the importance of advocating for our broader community systems to do the same, particularly in the public/ government sector.  Despite our best efforts to help those impacted by cancer, if there are not laws designed to ensure affordable access to quality healthcare, if there are not laws to protect job security during treatment and if there is not continued financial funding for cancer research our patients are still in jeopardy of experiencing cancer's many negative effects. 

"What can I do?  I mean, I am just one person."  Do not sell yourself short!  As oncology social workers we are experts on cancer and the needs of cancer patients.  When we speak to our elected officials in this professional capacity they will listen.  Our legislators realize we serve the members of our community (remember, the legislator lives in the community, too) and represent not only ourselves, but the voices of so many of our neighbors who have endured the battles of cancer treatment and survivorship.

Empower your patients; empower yourself--find the power to get involved with advocacy and the power to enhance how your Congressmember works for cancer survivors in your community.   
 

Recent Articles

Social Workers are in the House (and Senate Too!)

Posted 23 March 2019 by Michael Grignon

Happy social work month to all of our fellow social workers out there.  March is a month to celebrate each other and our accomplishments as a profession.  Everyday social workers are active in promoting social justice and equality in many different arenas, including within our government. 

Butt, Out!

Posted 25 February 2019 by Michael Grignon

Who wants to make it illegal to sell tobacco products across New York State to people under age 21?  From his recent proposed executive budget, it appears New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo does and he is not alone.

Butt Out!

Posted 15 February 2019 by Michael Grignon

Who wants to make it illegal to sell tobacco products across New York State to people under age 21?  From his recent proposed executive budget, it appears New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo does and he is not alone.
 

New Transparency Laws Could Help Patients Reduce Out-of-Pocket Spending

Posted 18 October 2018 by Elizabeth Franklin

President Trump recently signed two bills into law aimed at reducing patients’ out-of-pocket spending on prescription medications. The “Patient’s Right to Know Drug Prices Act” and the “Know the Lowest Price Act” address a practice known as “gag clauses.”
 
 

Advocacy 101: Just the Basics

Posted 10 October 2018 by Michael Grignon

In case you missed it, there is another election coming up.  You might be asking yourself: "Which offices are up for election?"  "Is it my Senator or Congressmember?"  "Who ARE my Senators and Congressmember?"  "Where do my representatives stand on issues important to cancer patients?"

The Business of Healthcare: One More Hat for Social Workers to Wear

Posted 14 August 2018 by Sean Powell

Healthcare is a business and it is incumbent upon oncology social workers to be knowledgeable of health business trends and aware of changes that could impact our profession and our patients. 

Call Your Congressmember... Invite them to a Cancer Event in Your Community

Posted 10 July 2018 by Michael Grignon

AOSW member Michael Grignon shares ideas for engaging elected representatives in our work. Michael serves on the AOSW Advocacy Committee.

Speak Up

Posted 8 May 2018 by Michael Grignon

AOSW member Michael Grignon shares reflections on his participation in the 2018 American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) New York State Advocacy Day.
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