Scots parliament debates social work crisis

The state of Scottish social work in the country was debated last month by the Scottish parliament.

MSP Brian Adam called for the Scottish executive to review the pay and conditions of social workers in light of the high vacancy and retention rates in the profession.

However, a number of speakers either wanted a wider inquiry or believed that measures already taken made such a review irrelevant.

Speakers pointed to: the three year degree; fast-tracking of graduates and bursaries; and the Recruitment and Retention group set up by local government employers as initiatives that are helping to improve staff problems.

Euan Robson, the deputy minister for education and young people, pointed to the growth in qualified social workers over the past six years from 3,314 in 1997 to 4,118 in 2003. But he also highlighted that demand was outstripping supply with a 5 per cent increase in the number of social work posts last year in Scotland.

He outlined the tasks of the national work force group in training, promoting best practice and predicting future staffing needs. He also said that the Scottish executive was investing £9m in the workforce over the next two years and £2m for developing social work leaders.

The next stage of the social worker recruitment campaign in Scotland began this month.


Looking for a job in the Social Services sector? Take a look at our social work jobs section, or visit our partner, for Social Services jobs

More from Community Care

Comments are closed.