Wednesday, 11 April 2012
The Child Extraction Avalanche
The reports in today's media of big increases of children taken into care reinforce the increasing evolution of the misuse of social work education and skills by public authorities. Child care social work in the UK now comprises nothing more than gangs of CHILD PROTECTION POLICE.
There needs to be an honest recognition of the fact that this is a separate and distinct profession with specialist skills. With a separation of these functions away from Child Care itself and attachment of the Social Work Police to the Police Authorities - that would, in any case, result in better essential child protection communications, removing children from their parents could be fairer, better evidenced and a more appropriate and accountable part of the criminal justice system. It could well be that social work training might be part of their very specialist education.
In over thirty years of professional practice, my child care work consisted of working in partnership with families and children towards solutions to their problems. In all that time I can only recall ONE occasion where I had to take a child away from its parents.
Come on - let's free social workers to return to social work proper - HELPING communities, families and individuals NOT investigating criminal activity (that's what child abuse is after all) and taking misplaced forensic actions.