Recent updates from BASW England (27 March 2020)
This week we met with social work leaders from Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), Department for Education (DfE) and Social Work England to raise the issues and challenges that social workers are experiencing based on the feedback of over 1300 social workers who took part in the BASW survey of social work during the pandemic, including:
- Safety and lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) such as hand sanitisers which is leaving social workers concerned for clients safety and their own safety
- The need for guidance that would bring about consistency in the workplace
- Clarity on how social workers can deliver on their statutory duties to support vulnerable people during the pandemic
- Guidance for students who are on placements to give reassurance on protecting career pathways into social work
- We asked that Ministers where possible directly reference social work and social worker in their public addresses alongside colleagues in health and social care
We know there is clear commitment from social work leaders to support the workforce and work is underway to tackle the issues. We are pleased share that progress has been made across the following areas:
- Guidance relevant to social work will continue to be produced, including recent work developed in partnership with BASW: AMHP guidance and information.
- Social Work England have updated their COVID19 information and advice for education provider and social work students on placements and volunteering.
- Dedicated updates for social work specifically for adults services on the Skills for Care website.
- Emergency powers to bring back social workers now confirmed live - details are on the Social Work England website. More to follow on how BASW can support this.
- BASW England briefing paper on Coronavirus Bill (25 March 2020)
This briefing paper is a compilation of responses from BASW members and stakeholders including those who work with children and families; adults; people with mental health issues and students and newly qualified social workers (NQSW’s). This briefing outlines their views and concerns on the Covid-19 outbreak and the implications of the Coronavirus Bill.
- Supporting autistic adults and adults with learning disabilities during coronavirus outbreak (25 March 2020)
Joint statement by the British Association of Social Workers (BASW) and the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE)
"We are living in unprecedented time. Autistic adults and people with learning disabilities are likely to find the coronavirus outbreak, the restrictions placed on daily living, and the changes to how their support is delivered, particularly confusing, worrying and in some situations distressing."
- Students need to be given the opportunities and support to make the choices they want to make about placements in these uncertain times (25 March 2020)
BASW has received over 1,200 responses to our COVID - 19 survey and a number of student responses have highlighted concerns about not wanting to remain in their placements but feeling pressured to do so and that if they don’t they fear it will jeopardise their graduation and career prospects .
- The Department for Education is already in extensive discussion with sector leaders including BASW England as set out by Isabelle Trowler, Chief Social Worker for England (Children and Families) 20 March 2020.
Further BASW England Government advice and other information is available on the main BASW UK coronavirus updates pages.