Belfast social worker suspended from register

A social worker from Belfast who turned up to work under the influence of alcohol and swore at a colleague has been suspended for six months.

A Northern Ireland Social Care Council conduct committee found Fionnuala Patricia Burke had committed a “serious breach” of the code of practice for social care workers.

The committee said Burke had not been reliable or dependable, and her behaviour called into question her suitability to work into social care.

“Lack of respect”

In using abusive language she was found to have breached the code of practice requiring social workers to work openly and co-operatively with colleagues, treating them with respect.

The committee felt suspending Burke from the register for six months was sufficient to protect the public and maintain confidence in social care services.

The hearing was held in private as Burke was suffering from ill health, which may have contributed to her behaviour, the committee said.

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