Dr. Cheryl Regehr, RSW

Opening Keynote:

"Exposure to Stress and Trauma in Social Work Practice: Contributors, Consequences, and Mitigation" 

OASW Social Work Provincial Conference - Friday November 14, 2014

Social work practice is characterized by encounters that can contribute to physiological stress, trauma response and burnout in practitioners.  Such reactions have the potential to affect not only the individual well-being and social lives of social workers, but also their practice and professional judgement.  

This presentation discusses a program of research that has examined factors that contribute to the development of distress responses in social workers; the effects of critical incident exposure and distress symptoms on the performance and decision-making; and factors that mitigate distress reactions and their consequences. 

This cutting-edge research highlights the importance of "Resilience", and how social workers can transcend the most daunting of circumstances. 

Keynote Speaker Biography

Dr. Cheryl Regehr is the Vice-President and Provost for the University of Toronto. Former Dean of the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work, she is a Professor in the Faculty of Social Work, and has cross-appointments to the Faculty of Law and the Institute for Medical Sciences at University of Toronto. 

Professor Regehr's practice background includes over 20 years of direct service in forensic social work and emergency mental health and in the administration of mental health programs, specializing in civil litigation and criminal court assessments of trauma victims and violent offenders, and organizationally based trauma interventions. She was the director of the Crisis Response Team at Pearson International Airport, served on the mental health advisory for the Department of National Defence and Veterans Affairs Canada, and currently is a member of the Board of Trustees for the University Health Network. In 2004, she was awarded the Amicus Award by the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law for her contributions to forensic mental health. 

Dr. Regehr's four books and over 100 scholarly articles focus on three intersecting issues: trauma and recovery; social work practice and competency; and stress, trauma and decision-making in emergency service professions. Her most recent book, co-authored with Dr. Graham Clancy and published by the Oxford University Press, is: Mental Health Social Work Practice in Canada, Second Edition, 2014.