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Politics & Government

State DPW Head Calls for Agency to be Renamed

The head of the commonwealth’s Department of Public Welfare is telling state lawmakers she’d “love” for her agency to be renamed.

Supporters of changing the name to the Department of Human Services have long said the switch would show more sensitivity to benefit recipients.

DPW Secretary Bev Mackereth has previously cited concerns about the cost of the makeover.

"But in the year that I’ve been here and I’ve watched people who again believe we’re something we’re not, that becomes a concern because it becomes a barrier," she said.

Mackereth says there’s a way to minimize the costs of changing the agency’s name.

Such a plan passed the House last summer.

A scheduled Senate committee vote on it was scuttled last month, ostensibly to revise proposed amendments to the measure.

The panel’s chairman says such changes are no longer in the mix.