General Social Care Council letters giving unregistered social
workers a licence to work are no bar to prosecution under
protection of title legislation.
The GSCC said it was up to the Crown Prosecution Service and the
courts to decide the legal status of the letters, which have been
sent to thousands of unregistered social workers who have
demonstrated an intent to register.
Under the law, it is illegal to call yourself a social worker
with intent to deceive, hence the importance of demonstrating
intent by applying for registration.
Social workers who are practising but unregistered could be
fined up to £5,000.
The GSCC said almost 59,000 social workers were on the register
and it was considering applications from more than 7,000 others,
with 200 forms coming in every week.
Speaking at a conference last month, GSCC regulation director
Heather Wing admitted there were “lessons to be
learned” from the way it had handled registration.