Fonds PR4093 - Alberta College of Social Workers fonds

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Alberta College of Social Workers fonds

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    • Source of title proper: The title is based on the provenance of the fonds.

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    • 1973-2014 (Creation)

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    Physical description

    ca. 1.51 m of textual records and other materials.

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    Administrative history

    The Alberta Association of Social Workers was formed in 1961, and it became the Alberta Association of Registered Social Workers in 1997. In 2000, the body changed its name to the Alberta College of Social Workers (ACSW) in preparation to be legislated by the Health Professions Act (HPA). Prior to this, the ACSW had been making efforts to be included in the Alberta health professional regulation, and it continued to do so. After demonstrating commitment to mandatory registration and other responsibilities as laid out in the HPA for two years, the ACSW officially became the regulatory college and professional association for the social worker profession in Alberta, under the HPA, in 2003.

    ACSW’s mandate and purpose is legislated by the HPA, which mandates that Alberta health professions be regulated by self-governing regulatory colleges. Regulatory colleges exist in tandem with professional associations, with the regulatory colleges intended to put the interests of patients and the public first. Under the HPA, the function of the ACSW is to govern registered social workers in a way that protects and serves the public interest. The ACSW is governed by a Council of fourteen members, including seven elected and registered members and seven public members appointed by the Government of Alberta.

    To be identified as a Social Worker in Alberta, a person needs to be registered with the ACSW. To do so, that person must hold a recognized social work credential prior to their application. Once a Social Worker is registered with the ACSW, they are permitted to practice within the scope of social work with clients in Alberta.

    Prior to 2020, the ACSW was an organization with a mandate to serve both the public and the profession’s interests; it acted as both regulatory college and professional association. In 2020, the Government of Alberta passed legislation that required health professional regulatory colleges to cease all functions as professional associations. As a result of this legislative change, the ACSW supported the development of a new professional association and divested itself of those functions. The Social Workers Association of Alberta became a distinct legal entity in August 2022.

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    Scope and content

    The fonds is comprised mostly of operational and published records of the Alberta College of Social Workers (ACSW). The fonds also includes some records collected from related organizations such as the Canadian Association of Social Workers. The records in this fonds were created prior to the ACSW divesting itself of professional association functions, and so the records depict and represent a mix of professional association and regulatory college functions.

    Textual records are comprised of conference and workshop programs and correspondence, annual reports, news releases, minutes, operational records and correspondence about ads, reports produced by ACSW members, and some proclamations and award certificates. The textual records also include copies of “The Advocate,” a publication used to inform ACSW membership of College activities and of issues of relevance to social workers in Alberta.

    The fonds also contains many photographic records and negatives. These depict conference speakers and attendees, groups of social workers, award and certificate ceremonies, and workshops, among several other subjects. Some of these were sorted with individual labels and others received labels with dates and events depicted. However, most of the photographs were labeled only with approximate dates.

    The audiovisual records include two recordings of panel meetings in 2002 about the Health Information Act and the impacts it would have on social workers in Alberta, an ACSW infomercial on income support, and excerpts from “Dance Like a Butterfly” (a play by Aviva Ravel). Audio records on audiocassettes include an ACSW radio message on government service cuts, radio ads and infomercials for ACSW, and the radio ads from BC Social Workers that Alberta ads were based on. The fonds also contains many born-digital records created by the ACSW that were originally stored on floppy discs, CDs, and other drives.

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    Physical condition

    Immediate source of acquisition

    The records were donated to the Provincial Archives of Alberta by the the Promotions Coordinator of the Alberta College of Social Workers in 2014.


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        Language and script note

        The material is in English.

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        Restrictions on access

        Audiovisual records and records on discs and drives must be digitized prior to access.

        Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

        Permission for use required. Subject to the Copyright Act.

        Finding aids

        File list is not available at this time. Please contact reference archivist for more information.

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        Further accruals are expected.

        General note

        Includes the following accession: PR2014.2114

        General note

        Records have not yet been processed and are in the state in which they were donated.

        Physical description

        Includes ca. 2200 photographs. -- 2206 negatives. -- 11 transparencies. -- 4-VHS videocassettes [ca. 7 Hrs]. -- 3 audio cassette tapes [ca. 4.5 Hrs]. -- 95-3 1/2" disks. -- 10 CD-Rs [4.2 Hrs].

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