Social work drama viewed by more than 3 million people

The portrayal of social work has been hotly debated since 'Kiri' aired

Sarah Lancashire plays social worker Miriam in Channel 4 drama Kiri. Picture: Channel 4

A drama centred around the actions of a children’s social worker was viewed by more than three million people last week, Channel 4 has announced.

The press team said Kiri, which follows the aftermath of a child abduction during unsupervised contact for a girl about to be adopted, was viewed by 3.2 million people total on Wednesday night, the biggest opening for a Channel 4 drama in two years.

The portrayal of social work has been hotly debated since the show aired, with a social worker arguing that the show makes you feel empathy for a social worker in a way other portrayals of the profession have not tried to do in the past.

Others have complained the show relies on unrealistic stereotypes and could be harmful, especially as social workers are so infrequently shown on television.

The social worker, Miriam, is played by Sarah Lancashire, and Kiri features some of the more in-depth discussions about social work processes seen in fictional television.

Across the first episode, Miriam explains what she considers standard practice in regards to contact, how she came to her conclusions and discusses with her manager the fact her decisions were discussed and supervised.

The debate about social workers in Kiri will continue this Wednesday when episode two airs.

One Response to Social work drama viewed by more than 3 million people

  1. MadeInBedlam January 15, 2018 at 6:00 pm #

    The drama depicts the mum in the care home as abusive and as making up allegations against staff based on racism and malice.

    It depicts the young people accessing services as violent delinquents.

    The outrage by social workers over the stigmatisation of service users = 0.