15 quotes from social workers that shouldn’t be ignored

As Community Care finds social workers don't feel they have enough resources to protect children, here are quotes from social workers about what it is really like to work on the frontline

Original image: WestEnd61/REX (posed by model, words added by Community Care)
Original image: WestEnd61/REX (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Social workers are feeling the pressure.

Today it was revealed that 70% do not feel like they have enough resources to protect children and 43% have felt pressured to reclassify child protection cases as child in need.

More than 1,000 social workers in England responded to the survey by Community Care. Here are the thoughts and experiences of social workers who are dealing with these problems every day.

Original image: Cultura/REX Shuttershock (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Original image: Cultura/REX Shuttershock (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

All experienced child protection social workers are leaving the profession and newly qualified social workers are undertaking most of the work. They are less efficient at it

Original image: ImageBROKER/REX Shuttershock (words added by Community Care)

Original image: ImageBROKER/REX Shuttershock (words added by Community Care)

Managers want to process cases speedily to meet targets. Unless there are SERIOUS child protection concerns, no social work involvement is likely

Original image: OJO Images/REX (words added by Community Care)

Original image: OJO Images/REX (words added by Community Care)

 

Cases can be downgraded to children in need so more child protection cases can be allocated to that social worker to fit in with allocation guidelines

Original image: Monkey Business Images/REX (words added by Community Care)

Original image: Monkey Business Images/REX (words added by Community Care)

It was a clear case where the children should have been removed as the abuse was long standing but it continued to be worked and closed at regular intervals. The local authority prides itself of having one of the lowest children in care rates but it’s a disaster waiting to happen

Original image: Isopix/REX (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Original image: Isopix/REX (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Local policy is mainly resource led and not need led

Original image: Tuomos Martila/REX Shuttershock (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Original image: Tuomos Martila/REX Shuttershock (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Child of 14 reported to be in a relationship with a man in his 30s – not investigated as child protection, thresholds said not to be met

Original image: REX Shuttershock (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Original image: REX Shuttershock (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Long term social work teams don’t have the experience and/or the capacity in terms of workforce

Original image: WestEnd61/REX (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Original image: WestEnd61/REX (posed by model, words added by Community Care)

Read more about Community Care’s survey results.

More from Community Care

7 Responses to 15 quotes from social workers that shouldn’t be ignored

  1. Becky Hope September 3, 2015 at 5:44 pm #

    This is exactly what I say in my book on life as a child protection social worker…too many cases, too much pressure, too many children left unprotected….read it…its all there…”I’ll Never Give up on You: No Child Should ever be forgotten” by Becky Hope.

    • Neil September 6, 2015 at 12:51 am #

      Nice way to plug your book…you’re all heart.

  2. Margaret September 3, 2015 at 10:39 pm #

    I took early retirement 2 years ago from a job I loved ; reason being I felt I was beginning to cut corners in order to meet target’s too much paperwork not enough time to spend with children and family’s . seems nothing will change until there are no more experienced social worker’s in post. Then what happens to these children another generation of failing families.

  3. Viv September 5, 2015 at 4:02 pm #

    We all hoped that the Munro reports would make a difference but it seems high caseloads and managerialism are still the order of the day. The level of administration is terrifying. As one mother said to me, ‘ if you social workers actually came and spent time with us instead of sitting in front of your computers….’

  4. Debbie September 10, 2015 at 7:31 am #

    I keep saying that the only way to make this service effective is to double the amount of social workers in post. All the big enquiries say lighter caseloads but this recommendation always seems to get glossed over and you never seem to hear about it again. When I resigned I sent a letter to my manager (who was brilliant) and all the managers above her and to the director saying that there will be a Victoria Climbee or baby P in that locality, it was just a matter of time. It was passed down and down until it was left to my manager to deal with, that is how much they care!

  5. Tina coates September 10, 2015 at 7:49 am #

    Too sad, this government will be remembered for all the lasting damage and shortcuts they have brought in. Lawsuits and radical reforms to help sort this in the future. I do believe SW’s are damned if they do and damned if they don’t.

  6. Imelda September 12, 2015 at 12:28 pm #

    A plea from us all – children, families, social workers, carers – that falls on our government’s deaf ears. Shame on ALL political parties for not only allowing, but helping social services to get into this state!!!!! You’re a shameful lot!!!