GSCC committee bars social worker for relationship with user

A General Social Care Council conduct committee has barred a Rotherham social worker who formed a personal relationship with a “particularly vulnerable” service user from the profession. 

Andrew Walker was working at NCH Rotherham Bridges, a project that supports looked-after young people and care leavers between the ages of 16 and 21, when he began the relationship. He later lived with the woman and they are now married.

The committee decided that Walker had breached the GSCC’s code of practice a number of times. In particular, his work with the woman enabled him to have privileged contact with her and detailed knowledge of her personal circumstances and history.

Walker had also not informed the GSCC when he changed jobs and address, as required by all registered social workers. According to the GSCC, around a third of cases heard before a conduct committee have involved inappropriate relationships between a practitioner and a service user.

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