‘Crass political opportunism’: Social workers react to Cameron’s jail time proposal

Social workers outraged by David Cameron's proposals to extend a criminal charge for wilful neglect across children's social care

Earlier this week, prime minister David Cameron announced a series of measures he appears to believe will help tackle child sexual exploitation.

They include a proposed consultation on whether the crime of wilful neglect by professionals should include children’s social workers, educators and elected council members who fail to prevent child sexual exploitation.

It elicited an unprecedented response from the social work profession, with more than 200 comments posted on our website and Facebook page in less than 24 hours.

Social workers on Twitter, Facebook and Community Care all shared their thoughts and concerns about the proposals. Here is just a small selection of the responses.

Commenters on Community Care had mixed views on the proposals

Paul Roffey

Nicholas Lillie

Jim Greer

AMBWales Richard Howarth

On Facebook, there was a clear disapproval of the plans 

Siobhan Robertson

Rob Webb

Ian Hunt

Dan Woulahan

Alex Brummitt

Janet Moran


However, with every cloud…

Victoria Drury

Concerns were also voiced on Twitter



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One Response to ‘Crass political opportunism’: Social workers react to Cameron’s jail time proposal

  1. Julia Fiellateau March 13, 2015 at 7:15 am #

    I qualified as a social worker in 1994, but have been in the profession of children social care since the 1977.
    On the final day of my course, the realisation that I would now have to take the responsibility and or make decision that would make the difference as to whether a child stayed at home, was accommodated or adopted.
    The bureaucracy over the past 21yrs since has changed meaning child protection; we as social workers have ensure specific paperwork is completed; which I agree with; but for goodness sake; the receptiveness of one paperwork; the systems in place for some local authority so mind boggling; especially for a new qualified social worker; come on.
    Also why now, following “years of incompetent practice” of past and other professional agencies, is the threat of being imprisoned being put at the door of the social work profession; social work professionals have always had to work hand in hand with other professionals, but it is the social worker who bears the brunt of any difficulties that arise.
    David Cameron; the current economic climate, societal changes, values, behaviour etc, have changed over the past 30yrs +; we can’t as social workers be held responsible for all the failings of society. So stop the threat of imprisonment and help the profession. If “every” social worker was to forget to complete paperwork, we would all be in prison; I’m sure you and some of your M.P’s have forgotten `to complete theirs.