Scottish employers call for ‘super social workers’

“Super social workers” paid an enhanced salary are the way
forward, according to employers’ organisation the Convention of
Scottish Local Authorities.

CoSla’s social work spokesperson Kingsley Thomas told the
organisation’s annual conference last week that too often the role
of social work services in protecting the most vulnerable members
of society was undervalued and the system needed to be changed to
come into line with other professions such as teaching and

Thomas said: “The gap in pay between social work and similar
professions is wider than ever. Action is needed now to turn the
tide and ensure that social workers are also properly valued,
trained and financially rewarded.”

Commenting on the idea of creating “super social workers”, vice
president of the Association of Directors of Social Work Carole
Wilkinson said: “It is some time since this group of staff was
looked at [in terms of pay] and the fact that teachers, a similar
frontline profession, have been looked at means it is a legitimate

The recent review of conditions of teachers will result in a 23
per cent pay increase over two-and-a-half years, with 10 per cent
being paid next month. Once the increase is implemented a teacher
will earn £28,700 after a two-year post-probation period,
compared with the starting rate for a qualified social worker of
£17,300, rising to a maximum of £22,000.

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