Half of social workers and social work students do not know the difference between a regulator and a professional body according to a General Social Care Council poll of 360 people.
Penny Thompson, the chief executive of the GSCC, said the finding was understandable given that social work has only been regulated in the past decade and will only get a professional body of its own when the College of Social Work starts work in January 2012.
“It is important that there is clarity about our respective roles,” said Thompson. “As the regulator of social workers and their education and training, the GSCC’s statutory obligation is to protect the public. We cannot be the champion for the profession – that role belongs to the College of Social Work. A strong regulator as well as a strong professional body are both essential ingredients in developing a strong profession.”
Under legislation currently going through Parliament the Health Professions Council is set to take over from the GSCC as England’s social work regulator next year.
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