A manager who failed to properly supervise his team of social workers and allowed a backlog of unallocated cases to build up has been struck off the register in Scotland.
Reginald Turk had been employed as the team leader of Fife Council’s child assessment team, based in Kirkcaldy, since 2003. He was referred to the Scottish Social Services Council after concerns arose about his practice.
The SSSC’s conduct sub-committee investigated and found Turk had failed to ensure the system for allocating duty cases worked properly, or that adequate systems were in place for managing case closures.
The latter had caused a backlog of unassessed and unallocated cases to build up, the sub-committee found. It said: “Allowing case files to remain unassessed for lengthy periods without being read, closed or allocated by the responsible officer is, by his own admission, a dangerous practice.”
In relation to one family in particular, Turk had failed to act on a number of emails alerting him to escalating problems.
Problems were also reported with Turk’s supervision style. Although the sessions took place on a monthly basis, he did not pay enough attention to unallocated duty cases, the sub-committee found.
As a result, he did not have an “adequate oversight” of his team’s workload.
The sub-committee concluded that there was a significant risk that the misconduct would be repeated, particularly as a previous warning from Turk’s employer had not led to any improvement in his practice.
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