Executive’s working group neglects unqualified workers

The Scottish executive’s 21st Century Working Group on
social work is focussing too much attention on qualified social
workers, delegates were warned last week, writes Keith

Attendees to Community Care Live Scotland pointed out
that much of social work took place in multi-agency teams or in
joint structures and was carried out by staff without social work
qualifications. Focusing on the role of the social worker in
isolation would not give a true picture of the job, she said

Kate Vincent, director of social work services policy at the
Scottish executive, insisted that the remit of the review,
announced in July, was “already wide and looking at a variety
of social worker roles and allied professions”.

Vincent said that the review wanted to update the role of social
workers and provide them with resources and a legal framework for
the next 30 years.

But Duncan MacAulay, interim director of Edinburgh Council and
recent president of the Association of Directors of Social Work,
said that it would be a “mistake to review social work on its
own.” He pointed to the Caleb Ness inquiry which made eight
recommendations for social work but 25 for health services,
highlighting the joint nature of much of social and health

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