A social worker has been struck off for using her position to obtain information about her fiancé’s children.
The experienced social worker, employed by the London Borough of Southwark since 2008, sent an email from her work address to the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham asking if a mother and her three children were known to the authority.
In the email she provided the address and the dates of birth for all four individuals.
The records officer at Hammersmith and Fulham provided her with the information requested, including a chronology of contact the local authority had had with the family.
However, a month later the child protection chair for Hammersmith and Fulham raised concerns the request had not followed correct procedure.
The safeguarding review and quality assurance manager for Hammersmith and Fulham also raised concerns because the family was known to the social worker personally.
Southwark conducted an internal investigation during which the social worker admitted sending the email and that the father of the children concerned was her fiancé. However, she said she had done it because she wanted to ensure the children were safe, denied she had shared the information with anyone else and said she disposed of the information as confidential waste.
She said she had acted in good faith and did not see her actions as a misuse of her position as a social worker. She said she would not do it again.
However, the Health and Care Professions Council said if the social worker had had genuine fears about the children’s safety there were correct procedures to follow which she was aware of.
In addition the panel deemed that she had not shown any insight or remorse about her actions and as a result there was no guarantee it would not happen again.