‘Scots Bill will not make staff safe’

    The Association of Directors of Social Work has criticised MSPs’
    failure to give Scottish social workers the same protection from
    violence as other emergency staff.

    The Scottish parliament voted unanimously against two amendments to
    the Emergency Workers Bill tabled by Scottish National Party MSP
    Kenny MacAskill. The amendments would have made it a specific
    criminal offence to assault social workers, and offered them the
    same protection as police, fire, health and ambulance staff.

    MacAskill and the ADSW wanted social workers carrying out children
    at risk assessments in the home, all out-of-hours teams, and
    front-line community care workers to be covered by the act.
    Instead, only child protection and mental health social workers
    will have the protection when carrying out emergency work.

    Alexis Jay, president of ADSW, said the bill as it stood failed to
    recognise the “real nature” of social work and the emergencies
    social workers must respond to.

    The bill will now be put forward for royal assent.

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