HELLO THERE!

HELLO THERE!
WELCOME TO ALL FELLOW CAMPAIGNERS for DISABILITY RIGHTS - a pan disability blog connecting my work with, EQUAL LIVES, the National Survivor User Network (NSUN) and the Survivor History Group.
--- HEDDWCH

Protest, Norwich Job Centre

Protest, Norwich Job Centre
Fatso Gets Militant!

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

DAMNED IF THEY DO, DAMNED IF THEY DON'T

This will upset many people.

Since I was at college in 1970 doing my training for a social work qualification, I have had a special interest in professional social work standards, values and ethics. Throughout 30years +' social work practice I pursued this interest, contributing to the development of the original British Association of Social Work (BASW) Code of Ethics, researching and comparing this with the International Federation of Social Work Code, and other like activities including battling with social work managers about the general disregard of professional standards, values and ethics by managers and too many working practitioners.

It is clear that one of the problems here is the disillusion for newly qualified social workers around the standards, values and ethics they have carefully but enthusiatically absorbed from their training being jettisoned when they start work proper - especially in local authority employment.

Some protest but soon realise their career path could be damaged by their protests and, as many have just taken out a new mortgage as a celebration of starting real work, there is also a financial deterrent to pursuing observation of professional social work practice.

What has this got to do with our BBC programme. Well early on in my own career, when I'd had to do it myself, I had come to firmly believe that work involving the compulsory removal of children from their parents is incompatible with social work values. I did work in child care. And I saw my roles as within the sphere of work  alongside people towards solving social anomalies and problems and obtaining social justice - a mixture of community action, advocacy and casework (training included individual psychosocial therapy and groupwork).

I have long believed that the sphere of child protection cannot involve social workers. Those involved should be called Child Protection Officers and their roles should involve specific special training with a separate and distinct qualification. Social work should consist entirely of Social Work.


There is a good example of what I mean by child protection being incompatible with social work values in 'Damned if they Do, Damned if they Don't.' One of the first principles of social work is being Non-Judgemental and you can see some consciousness amongst the team members in the programme. Mick actually points to and accents the problem when he is wrestling with allowing his child to be fostered. He phones someone and says quietly: "They're judging me?"

And of course they're judging him - and everyone else involved - theyr'e judging the circumstances too - they have to, it's essential to the work they do. It's also a salient point special training and not social work training would improve their judgemental skills, resulting in better accuracy in work which sometimes destroys people's lives. You can also see the conflict in the young new social worker's mind - conflict that can cause an emotional maelstrom - conflict that creates cognitive dissonance!

Social workers would then be released to do what they entered the profession to do and the media's stigmatisation of social work would be confounded.

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Bweebideebobbida

Bweebideebobbida
The Tough Tenor (when I could walk)!

In a Mellotone

In a Mellotone
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