New initiatives are to blame for luring qualified social work
staff away from the frontline, according to a taskforce set up a
year ago to examine the scale of Scotland’s recruitment and
The main issues for the councils are new initiatives, such as
Sure Start, attracting staff away from direct contact with clients,
a reduction in the number of qualified staff available for
employment, the poor image of social work and fear of
Kingsley Thomas, chairperson of the task group, said: “The
government keeps giving money to local authorities to develop
better integrated services for children.
“Demand for services has meant that vacancy rates in many areas
are now increasing. We need urgently to make social work a much
more attractive career option,” he said.
A report from the Convention of Scottish Local
Authorities, ‘Caring for the Future’, revealed that 23
out of the 24 councils questioned reported recruitment