A social worker who appeared to be under the influence of alcohol while at work has been struck off.
Deborah Stirling arrived at her workplace at Staffordshire Council while under the influence of alcohol on at least five occasions between April 2008 and August 2009, the General Social Care Council’s conduct committee heard.
A colleague giving evidence recalled how, at one particular resource allocation meeting in August 2008, Stirling “smelled like a brewery and was rambling”.
Another colleague described how Stirling had nearly crashed her car in the office car park after drinking.
Stirling did not attend the hearing, parts of which were heard in private under the GSCC’s health procedure.
Several Staffordshire employees praised Stirling’s social work practice.
However, the committee noted that the behaviour had extended over a lengthy period of time and had put Stirling and service users at risk, especially when she drank alcohol before driving.
There was a risk the behaviour would be repeated, the committee concluded, so removal from the register was the only way to protect the public.
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