Racism driving black and minority ethnic social workers into agency work, finds research

Experience of discrimination, along with economic factors, leading minoritised practitioners to quit permanent local authority posts, finds survey of social workers and managers in London and the South East

A black social worker looking contemplative while working at laptop
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How big an issue is black and ethnic minority social workers being driven into agency work because of racism in local authorities?

  • It is a big issue across the board (74%, 494 Votes)
  • It's not something I'm aware of (16%, 110 Votes)
  • It's an issue only with some problem employers (10%, 65 Votes)

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Racism is driving black and minority ethnic social workers out of permanent local authority posts into agency work, research with over 1,000 practitioners has found.

Minoritised staff in London and the South East said they felt forced to leave council posts because of “poor experiences, lack of support and economic necessity”, said the report of the 2022-23 Big Listen survey, carried out by the sector-led children’s services improvement bodies for the two regions.

The research was designed to help the London Innovation and Improvement Alliance (LIIA) and South East Sector Led Improvement Programme (SESLIP) gain a better understanding of the workforce in order to better tackle the sector’s social work recruitment and retention challenges.

They surveyed 1,035 social workers and managers – representing 8% of those working in local authority children’s services across the two regions – 300 of whom were “black and global majority (BGM) staff”, in the terms of the report. LIIA and SESLIP also conducted focus groups attended by 150 people.

BGM staff accounted for a disproportionately high number of agency respondents to the survey (51.5%), compared with their representation in the whole sample (29%), and also constituted the majority of locums in the focus groups.

Racism ‘significant factor’ in agency move

LIIA and SESLIP said their research suggested that “racism was very significant factor for many BGM workers who decide to choose agency social work over local authority employment” and that councils were “fundamentally at higher risk of losing BGM social workers to the agency market”.

“The BGM workers we spoke to do not describe making this decision by choice, but rather expressing a feeling of being forced to do so due to poor experiences, lack of support and economic necessity,” said the Big Listen report.

On the economic point, the study found that BGM staff were “considerably more concerned than their white colleagues” about the cost of living crisis, with 83% being very concerned, compared with 64% of white staff.

They were also much less likely to say that their pay fairly reflected the job that they did (22%, as against 38% for white practitioners and managers).

Another significant gap was on supervision, with 69% of white respondents saying their authority ensured they received good supervision, compared with 62% of BGM staff.

Social workers’ experience of racism

The report follows survey findings published in March 2022 that one in four social workers had experienced racism from colleagues or managers at least once in the preceding 12 months while 42% had witnessed workmates experience it.

That survey was carried out by an anti-racist steering group comprising Social Work England, the adults’ and children’s principal social worker networks, the Department for Education (DfE), Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and What Works for Children’s Social Care (now Foundations).

On the back of the research, the steering group pledged to work with stakeholders – such as directors of children’s and adults’ services – to “garner support for an action plan to address the findings of the survey”. This would take into account existing anti-racism work, such as the social care workforce race equality standard (WRES).

The WRES, launched in 2021, involves councils reporting on a range of measures of race equality in their social care workforces, including in relation to salary, seniority, access to training, disciplinaries, recruitment and retention.

No anti-racism action plan

However, 16 months on, no plan has been published by the steering group and one of its members, the DHSC, has ceased funding the WRES, with Skills for Care taking this on itself.

In response to the Big Listen report, social work leaders in London stressed the need for urgent action on race equality in the workplace.

“This new research is incredibly useful for revealing the experience of our black and global majority workforce,” said Jacquie Burke and Beverley Hendricks, joint strategic leads of the Association of London Directors of Children’s Services’ Leadership in Colour programme, which seeks to address the low representation of BGM staff in senior roles.

Burke and Hendricks, director of children’s services and assistant director, safeguarding and social care, at Haringey council, respectively, added: “We have to address the structural inequalities in our workplaces that lead to black and global majority workers choosing agency over local authority employers. We must redouble efforts to champion and support change. Our workforce is our most precious asset.”

Case study: promoting race equality in social work

Millie Kerr

Millie Kerr, strategic anti-racist lead – business improvement at Brighton and Hove City Council, said the authority had seen “a small growth in the recruitment of black and global majority staff members and in the retention of our workforce”.

In relation to recruitment, she said this had been helped through the use of blind shortlisting, “where we do not know the names or ethnicity of any applicant, just a reference number to enable decisions to be made about who we will shortlist, based on experience evidenced within application forms”.

To support retention, Kerr said the council “really listened to the voices of our black and global majority staff members, to enable us to provide a supportive working environment”.

This has involved monthly black and global majority staff group meetings and bi-monthly emotional support groups, “in recognition of the impact of racial trauma on our staff members”.

Kerr, who was previously the authority’s anti-racist lead practitioner within children’s services, also highlighted the value of its annual black and global majority team building away day, now in its second year.

She said this was designed to “value the contributions made by our staff members in a caring and healing space” and empowers them to “feel that they can thrive and not just survive in the face of what can sometimes feel like challenge or adversity”.

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29 Responses to Racism driving black and minority ethnic social workers into agency work, finds research

  1. Not My Real Name July 28, 2023 at 1:10 pm #

    “The study found that BGM staff were “considerably more concerned than their white colleagues” about the cost of living crisis”

    Interesting to read this given what I posted seconds before about UNISON staff not supporting strike action on a different thread.

    As long as Social Work remains a hobby for middle class people who don’t really need the money issues like this won’t get addressed.

    • R July 29, 2023 at 3:12 pm #

      I have never (knowingly anyway) come across a social worker who is so rich as to not need an income, where do you work?!! Social work requires a degree and is a profession though so yes, that would make social workers generally middle class surely?

      • MaxP August 3, 2023 at 7:26 am #

        The person made a very big judgement and assumption there that their white colleagues are all rich middle class social workers who don’t need the money.

        Maybe 80yrs ago this was true. I do hope the person has more contemporary understanding and views if working with vulnerable people though.

    • Ellie July 29, 2023 at 5:15 pm #

      ‘As long as Social Work remains a hobby for middle class people who don’t really need the money issues like this won’t get addressed.’

      I’m so shocked at that comment, I can’t comment. What an awful thing to say…or think! I don’t know any social workers who don’t need the money.

      I was really shocked at the racism, but I’m equally shocked by your judgemental gross comment.

      • Pauline O July 30, 2023 at 6:04 pm #

        Ellie, I agree with you. Social work is a profession. We all work hard to gain our degree, to build our knowledge skills, and experience so that we can build a worthwhile career as well as provide financially for our family.

        However sadly to say if a white middle-class person were to apply for a social work position, the likelihood is they would(1). be offered the job( 2). secure a senior position within a short period( 3). regardless of whether they were fully equipped to carry out the role. This is because their development would be invested in rather than that of a black or BGM worker who would have faced many struggles to qualify, not because they do not have the skills to do so but because of attitudes and subconscious biases we should all address and be called out on if progress is to take place.

        The culture in Social work is becoming more and more divided, black workers receive less support and are scrutinized more than none BGM workers. Society is built up of many cultures therefore so should the workforce.

        The question for me is how we address what is taking place in front of everyone. Therefore leaving certain sections of society invisible vulnerable and without support.

        Because of the demands of the work Social work is not a profession you enter into to get yourself a little extra cash if you do not need that economic support. I would agree with this comment. However, it does appear to support your advancement.

        • MaxP August 3, 2023 at 7:40 am #

          Research consistently show that male social work students are more likely to be failed on work placements. That like for like when experience, qualifications and other employment considerations such as absence etc are taken into account males are positively discriminated against for promotion.
          Addressing gender bias in social work is not fashionable and somewhat taboo I know, but everything as important as discrimination experienced by BGM workers.

        • Sara August 3, 2023 at 10:32 pm #

          Are you saying that social workers (those beholders and trailblazers of anti-discriminatory practice) are actually… discriminatory?

        • Michelle August 3, 2023 at 11:38 pm #

          Thank you for your contribution, the discrimination you described, I have experienced,
          Yes the culture is becoming more and more divided, yet we are trained to be anti-oppressive and anti-discriminatory in our practice.
          I have been working on a paper to address these specific issues, yet the team told me it was not needed.
          So, I have decided to publish it instead.

  2. Lilybright July 28, 2023 at 7:20 pm #

    ” A hobby for middle class people” might have been true in the C19 or even up to the 1970s. Along with reeking of sexism, t’s just not true any more. – are you suggesting women (the majority of the social work workforce, whether Black or white) work for that old trope “pin money”?,

    You should also know that Unison members are not just social workers. They are lcoal govenment workers across the board (including managers, the legacy of the NALGO/NUPE/COHSE amalgaation) who have been hammered by cuts for the past 18 years – 20 years and who have had a spineless “wait for Labour ” leadership. Yes, it’s disappointing and frustrating to lose the vote, but we need to punch up, not across , and not down.

  3. ASC in the Midlands July 28, 2023 at 7:44 pm #

    Maybe look to survey all social workers rather than focusing on Practice in London before rolling out national policy initiatives?

    • Joy August 1, 2023 at 7:29 am #

      ASC- East Midlands, thank you for highlighting this , the survey should be rolled out across the country where this awful racism and inequality is being practiced in local authorities workplace. It’s traumatic and driving good , hardworking social workers out , this needs addressing

      The question is , why employ them if you don’t want them based on their skin colour and accent not based on the quality of work they are contributing to the society and vulnerable people??

  4. Alex July 29, 2023 at 8:49 am #

    This is really sad but gives me insight into an issue I have not had to consider being a white social worker. Since I moved to practice social work outside of London I have noticed that a large number of agency staff are black or the global majority and it did make me curious as to why this is. We must do better.

  5. Annonymous July 29, 2023 at 1:44 pm #

    I can’t go permanent for a local authority job anymore, the familiarity breads a kind of abuse that’s not worth the money.

  6. Ryan Webb July 30, 2023 at 5:18 am #

    A profession which continues to increasingly fail to address the vast gender imbalance of its membership cannot be expected to satisfy anybody on any issues associated with equality.

  7. Higgy July 30, 2023 at 5:42 pm #

    I have found bringing overseas workers too simplistic a solution for high vacancy rates. There are poor induction plans and training. To expect a social worker new to UK to know our complex legal system and organisational structures like court, family centres etc is a recipe for disaster. We would not do it to final placement students or NQSW. They need alot of input before they are up and running. For example I had one asking what is a health visitor and what do they do? They even had not attended a conference before. Some had come from a community casework approach where they try to influence the elders not a family model and not challenge men in some cultures.
    There is alot to learn. The expectation to hit the ground running is unacceptable. No wonder they struggle without training and supervision. Corporate management in local authorities see staff as a numbers game. This needs to change if we are to continue recruiting overseas social workers. I wonder what proportion get referred to SWE when it’s systemic failure.

    • Sara August 3, 2023 at 10:44 pm #

      Yes, taking overseas social workers from countries like India and South Africa is a pretty stupid solution for the staff shortage crisis in the UK. But oh so typical social worker-y. Typically trying to redistribute wealth to countries they still see as ‘developing’.They should have taken overseas social workers from countries with more similar structures to UK, like Sweden, Norway, Germany. Not rocket science. But just so stupidly social work typical – no wonder social work in the UK is a mess. Always was a mess, always will be a mess, whilst loads to tax payer money continues to get wasted through incompetence. And I doubt it’s ‘racism’ that causing a disappointment amount of agency staff to be BME. Agency staff are actually on a better deal – more money, less commitment and can move around whenever they want, with no shortage of work.

  8. D August 1, 2023 at 2:21 pm #

    Another sensationalist article about racism in social care.

    The research has anecdotal accounts of SWs own accounts of reasons for certain things to have happened in their career and put this down to the colour of their skin. The research itself states ‘it is clear the financial benefits of agency work are the most significant drivers for workers joining the agency workforce’ and that workers are ‘forced to do so due to due to poor experiences, lack of support and economic necessity’. Not because of racism.

    There is no exploration of why pay is so important for certain groups of staff and not others – is it socioeconomic background, age? Older workers are less impacted by cost of living etc than newer younger staff, for example. Any hypothesis outside of racism isn’t explored. Yet Community Care turns it into another article bemoaning racism in social care and that it’s racism is ‘driving’ people to agency work.

    Black people are continually told that all ills they face are due to racism, be that direct or institutional. It is little wonder that this narrative has been internalised. It’s a demeaning and infantilising narrative about black people, which should be refuted, especially by a profession such as social work.

    Calling out ‘racism!’, for any disproportionality looked at using the metric of race means the actual reasons for disparities are likely to not be discovered. Some of the reason may indeed be about race, but it is highly unlikely to be the sole reason. ‘Anti-racism’, based on critical race theory, is a backwards step towards equality and an unquestioning adoption of this theory across social work is a mistake. Can a theory which is built on the assumption that people with white skin are inherently racist, a racist assertion, be the liberating force many are signed up to?

    • Pauline O August 4, 2023 at 12:09 am #

      Dear D in response to your comments, unless you have lived the life experience of a black worker who from the age of 17 years old had the desire to progress in a career where you want to support vulnerable children regardless of culture, or colour you want to support them because life is painful for them in some way or other and you want to help make changes to their lives.

      You fight for a career, where you are told you will be supported in your development to the level you want but this never happens!, where you had to pay for your own training if you want to progress, however none black colleagues are ear marked for the training, when you are told you do not have the qualifications to progress,despite working hard to gain those qulification you still do not progress from level one to level three within your developmental career. why is this? I can give more examples which are blatant but subtle. A black worker can be made to appear incompetent by holding back on support, which could be just not providing certain information which would help someone. After one of many rejected interviews, a manager once told me a manager can appoint someone they believe they can work with, someone who may have the same values as themselves.

      This is true some teams can be built up of some workers who echo their same beliefs, this can be destructive for the workforce,and for children who are suffering and who become invisible within the system. This will impact on future generations and society ,if you don’t exist why would a vulnerable child want to give back to society .I believe if you have the skills and can do the job and demonstrated the desire, and dedication you should have the right to achieve the career you aim for regardless of colour.In my view It is obvious racism exists.

      The question is how do you address the imbalance in a professional and much-needed service? For forty-three years I have taken my role seriously, I am proud to say I am a social worker because I believe the profession is much needed, my desire to progress has always been very strong and continues to remain just has strong forty plus year’s on so what as stopped me from progressing? You beat yourself up for year’s trying to work out what is preventing progress.

      Therefore to imply everyone is equal is misplaced and in my view is why nothing as changed. If the belief is racism does not exist for the workforce then how does the organisation support vulnerable children and families who do not reflect those who have the power to make changes.

      I think the first step is to acknowledge the issue exists, ask questions, explore and listen when a worker complains about being overlooked or experiencing mistreatment instead of ignoring the complaint or making it the victims fault.Fear exploration of a complaint will prove what that worker is experiencing it will also make accountability everyones responsibility.

      Consider how a vulnerable child who is black or who comes from a culture where the worker does not reflect or have an understanding of their lived experiences, cultural demands, when that child can not identify with that worker can we really claim we are meeting that child’s overall needs and make positive changes?

      Everyone wants to find a career which they enjoy and one which will give them financial security to provide for their families regardless of age, culture, or race.What is event a section of the workforce will have better opportunitys and options.

      These are based on my experience and my lived experience. As someone who has worked in a system for over forty years in child protection, I have experienced and observed racism this is not an excuse for those who have experienced unfair treatment.It can be demoralizing, impact on your self-esteem, leave a profession where you have something to offer.

      Social work needs to respect and reflect everyone.It is a professional service for me it is about learning your profession so that you are fully equipped to offer a service that reflects the society we all share and are equally valued it is sad to say this is not reflective.

      For D we all have different experiences because someone has not or does not have the same experience or challenges does not mean it does not exist. Social work is a worthwhile career, however, it is losing competent, valued workers, who are skilled experienced workers.

      Agency work is not easy a manager can get rid of you within one week’s notice if they do not like you or you question decisions. A black worker is unlikely to progress to a higher pay scale within three years or five.

  9. Nabu White August 1, 2023 at 11:13 pm #

    I would argue that it’s institutional racism. I’m my experience as a very experienced social worker finding myself on the front line after despite 29 years experiences and a masters degree. While I see colleagues and folk less qualified and experienced promoted to senior positions. Therefore I would argue that black social workers by and large do not have the same opportunities for promotion as their white counterparts even those with far less experience. I is demoralising and dismissive of our experience and knowledge in the field. I don’t think that a workforce that does not reflect equity in their diversity statergies are fully equipped to accommodate for the diversity reflected in society.
    I would also argue nepotism as a reason why black workers are not given opportunities for promotion.
    I speak if my experience as a black social worker working in Scotland for nearly 21 years.
    I too left a full time post due to my experience of racism and am now doing agency work. There should be a National inquiry into institutional racism in the public and independent social work sector.

    • D August 3, 2023 at 9:25 pm #

      There has already been a significant piece of research into institutional racism – https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/commission-on-race-and-ethnic-disparities

      • Matilda O'Kay August 6, 2023 at 3:23 pm #

        Knowing that racism only exists in the minds of those who have internalised the narrative is reassuring. Based on this premise, one cannot be accused of racism (directly or institutionally) and can ignore those who assert its impacts on their lived experience. Were more social work managers to adopt a similar viewpoint, and black permanent staff in their team left to take on agency roles, we can all happily assume that they did so purely for financial gain.


        • D August 7, 2023 at 12:52 pm #

          Black people are continually told that all ills they face are due to racism, be that direct or institutional. It is little wonder that this narrative has been internalised. This statement does not deny racism, it argues that racism is not the cause of all ills but I imagine your response is deliberately disingenuous.

          It’s not an assumption that staff move to agency roles predominantly because of finances, it is in the data from the study.

          The response from RCP cannot link social and institutional structures being adopted because they cause racial disparity, so its argument is pretty flimsy and may even be regarded as virtue signalling. Most charitable bodies were aghast at the report as that was the fashionable liberal response, not because they could use evidence to pick holes in the conclusion.

        • Pauline O'Reggio August 8, 2023 at 10:52 pm #

          MatiIda/D I disagree with your comments. As responsible parents you DO NOT ingrain in your children that everything time they do not achieve their goals it is down to racism, to do this would be irresponsible and sets your children up for failure, of course, there could be many other factors involved, and in my view, the issues are much more complicated. If I am reading your comments correctly I would be concerned about any vulnerable child and or family black or white ,anyone with different cultural beliefs, black employees receiving fair and balanced service/support if this is your view. There is no question that racism plays a part once you eliminate other factors. Agency work is not easy, your contract of employment is not secure, your contract can be terminated at any time, you are treated with little respect and can be given caseload that is unmanable so long has a named worker is attached to the cases it.Once the case is allocated to a social worker you hold case responsibly therefore to claimed you do not have any responsibility is not factual information, some authority, you are walking into already have established teams, with an established work culture, every authority has its own cultural way of practice. I could continue with evidence-based examples of racist practice. I am fully aware to draw attention to this claim comes with objections and crys of internalized victim standing. Racesium is a very emotive issue because it affects one’s emotional well-being, it affects one’s sense of value, it affects how we provide for our family and where we belong in society. It also affects how we treat those vulnerable children we are employed to support and protect.I know what I have experienced I also know what I have observed and the impact on employees, myself, and vulnerable families.

  10. Donotakebs August 3, 2023 at 10:51 am #

    Staff choose agencies because are much better paid and less responsibilities than in a permanent role. As well they choose self employment instead of PAYE, for paying less tax and pocketing more money. Nothing to do with racism.

    • Maria August 25, 2023 at 11:41 pm #

      You obviously aren’t aware of the serious problems in LA’s re institutional racism, sexism, discrimination, corruption, collusion, cover ups, cronyism, nepotism & bias where managers/senior managers/directors will recruit, promote, defend, protect & support their mates!

  11. The Survivor August 5, 2023 at 11:57 am #

    I continue to remain traumatised by my experiences of blatant racism by social work managers who were subsequently supported and enabled by a local authority.
    From being ttreated differently to my white counterparts; to having urgent funding refused for no logical reason other than to undermine my social work capability and wilfully place vulnerable adults at risk. Discriminatory harassment and bullying with what is now clearly recognised as a toxic agenda to make my life a living hell and force me out of my role. Allocating me an excessive full-time workload despite my part time hours, blocking the right to CPD and self-development. Continued harassment and resorting to concocting blatant lies to deliberately depict me as incompetent in my role after setting me up to fail, with repeated requests for pro rata allocations in line with my contractual work hours refused. Subjected to well practiced agenda’s from racist managers abusing power in a manner that is tantamount to misfeasance; with vulnerable adults readily sacrificed to achieve discriminatory goals.

    Expecting Human Resources to address such vile and discriminatory conduct in breach of the Equality Act and HSE is a mythical as they will simply jump on the racist bandwagon and reinforce the racism. The grievance process is a farce with alleged independent investigators producing nonsensical, claptrap with specific intent to cover up and further reinforce the racism, discrimination and vitriol all the way up to highest echelons.

    A clearly evidenced grievance will categorically never be upheld. The racist managers are never held to account and left to select their next target. Simplistic priceless resolutions requested to relocate to another team, that should and could be easily implemented are ignored in preference to abusing public funds and paying out unnecessary settlements to achieve the ultimate goal of ousting highly intelligent, most experienced and qualified Black staff out of the organisation. This prevents the ongoing accumulation of documentary evidence from never progressing in their careers, because far superior yet inexperienced white staff miraculously get the promotions. How many times can one be told ” You were pipped to the post” by social workers with barely any post qualification experience. The fact that your employer should be supporting you to progress in your career is readily disregarded when the colour of your skin does not fit.

    I went all the way to the top with my grievances; from Head of HR, Director of HR and even the Chief Executive who all readily disregarded clearly evidenced facts in preference to being complicit participants and perpetrators of racism.
    Do not be fooled by the job titles or ever assume individuals elevated to such positions are not perpetrators of racism who have no care or regard for the Equality Act, or the duty to prevent discrimination as per the Public Sector Equality Duty and or HSE duty to ensure the health and safety of all employees.

    Even after leaving I continued to be subjected to racially motivated harassment inclusive of bad references, defamation and slander.
    I was racially profiled by Director of HR who told HCPC I was ‘aggressive’ that I was ‘sighted in vicinity of civic offices’ harassing staff and making them frightened to attend and leave work’ Blatant lies intended to decimate your character and reputation via racial profiling and criminalisation based on pure fiction, but willingly taken as the gospel truth by HCPC another organisational bastion of institutional racism.

    Raising such concerns to a chief executive as per clearly evidenced DSAR data substantiating concerns that a senior officer had engaged in racial animus, offensive slanderous and abusive conduct in breach of staff code of conduct, was met with being labelled a “vexatious complainer”!

    Whatever your experience document it and email the chief executive. If I knew then what I know now I would not have fallen so easily for the repeated blatant lies proffered to me in flagrant breach of the councils very own policies and procedures and statutory obligations to employees. The Unions are merely useless co- conspirators of racism with my GMB representatives being complicit with the HR agenda, ineffective and unhelpful. So called friends and colleagues will stand by in silence, not even a phone call to check on your welfare.

    I loved and was passionate about my job and achieving positive outcomes for my vulnerable service users. I excelled in my job and always went the extra mile, but as a Black Social Worker that was not enough. Because of the colour of my skin I was bullied, intimidated, harassed and humiliated to the detriment of my health and family, for no logical or justifiable reason other than being perpetrated by racist managers supported and enabled to pursue well – practiced agenda’s of elimination in a normalised fashion that is testament to institutional racism by organisations employing Social Workers.

    The unpalatable and shocking nature of my personal experiences and the look or thoughts of disbelief at the abusive behaviours inflicted upon me further reinforce the culture of racism and the fact that reversing roles with Black abusive, aggressive perpetrators making trhe life of a hardworking white social worker a living hell; being a far more believable and raediky acepted scenario without question.
    Two settlement agreements are no consolation to standing up against racism and the trauma caused; simply for expecting to be able to do a Social Work job with dignity.

    When I was well enough, agency work was what enabled me to survive financially.

    BASW what is your response to this research? and what support is on offer to the numerous Black Social Workers having to deal with blatant racism in the workplace as normalised practice.

  12. Erm August 6, 2023 at 10:06 am #

    Oh, so the Big Listen survey is ‘sensationalist’, but the discredited Sewage Report is ‘a significant piece of research’ eh D??

    • D August 7, 2023 at 1:02 pm #

      I stated the article is sensationalist, and in not in line with the research it reports upon. You should read both.

      The report chaired by Sewell is incomparable in its scale and breadth compared to a ‘big listen’. It explicitly goes beyond the individual instances of racism, which are undoubtedly present, to look at structural evidence.

  13. Maria August 25, 2023 at 11:32 pm #

    The white directors, leaders & senior managers of these racist, sexist & corrupt councils are the problem & its been going on for many years where SWE, BASW, unions & regulators are doing nothing about it whatsoever! Institutional racism, sexism, discrimination, bullying, harassment, victimisation & discrimination of BME SW’s is rife in LA’s!