“Call the state first before you do anything else!” says Mavis Azariah Armattoe. She’s a health licensing specialist for the District of Columbia’s department of health. Social workers who want to add a license in a new jurisdiction would be wise to take this key advice.
“As a licensed social worker with good standing and an ASWB passed exam score,” Armattoe says, “you are mobile, at least in D.C.” But she acknowledges that every jurisdiction has different requirements, something that isn’t always understood. “Most social workers think once they are licensed in a state, they can and should be able to get licensed in another jurisdiction.” But she adds that it requires some research to learn what is required in the new jurisdiction.
And good research might mean getting familiar with important terminology. Armattoe says that though licensed social workers often refer to the process of obtaining a license in a new jurisdiction as “reciprocity,” for example, many regulatory boards call this “endorsement.”