JULY 2020 

Children's centre closures will `reduce safe spaces'' say social workers; Ipswich Star; BASW’s Suffolk branch says those buildings represent safe spaces for families and need to stay – online, with six other titles publishing too

Social workers experiencing rising stress and workloads on eve of Covid, finds DfE study – Community Care; BASW responds to the findings saying "yet another reminder of the toll that long hours, high caseloads and poor working conditions is taking on a workforce” – online 

Lemn Sissay: ‘I used to be a rebel; I’m now a rebel with a mortgage’; The Sunday Times – Lemm Sissay talks about his life, including his activities during the pandemic where he gave a keynote address at BASW’s 50th anniversary virtual festival – in print 19/07/2020

Times letters: Lift This Limit; The Times – BASW Northern Ireland join a number of other signatories in penning a letter calling for the Government to lift the two child limit for Universal Credit to help all children thrive – in print 17/07/2020

SWU member Carys Phillips joins TalkRadio to highlight the pressures on UK social workers and how they have been exacerbated by Covid-19 and the pandemic – online 

Minister pledges to reinstate most children in care duties; Community Care – BASW England argue the changes are unnecessary and may do harm to children and dismiss Government claims that the changes were brought in response to calls from sector leaders – online

Less than a fifth of children with a social worker attend school; The Londoner – BASW PO Rebekah Pierre warns of the increased risk to children from domestic violence, gangs and poverty – online

Third of social workers considering quitting profession – Community Care; Respondents to SWU poll report worsening mental health, the need to provide their own PPE and significant concerns about referral spike – online

SWU’s John McGowan and a BASW/SWU member discuss the issues and challenges surrounding social work bought on by the pandemic on BBC Radio Suffolkonline (starts 11:12am)

Changes to children’s centresLowestoft Journal; BASW is cited in a local opinion piece over
concerns for both adults and children in families after potential closures of “life changing” Children's Centres – print 03/07/2020

Centres are vital for well-being of familiesBury Free Press; BASW provides information and concerns for a piece from local Councillor Diane Hind on the importance of children and families centres, and the risks of cutting further services after the pandemic – print 02/07/2020

 

JUNE 2020

Systemic factors have driven social worker risk-taking during pandemic – Community Care;
New research from Birmingham University mirrored key messages from BASW's own Covid-19 survey, says national director Maris Stratulis, and reinforces that there is regional and local variation at a systems and leadership level – online 

The Value of Social WorkOn Probation (Blog); BASW’s Code of Ethics is cited in arguing for being "focused on problem solving and change" and holding up social justice and human rights – online 

Four ways the Covid-19 crisis will transform UK social workThe Guardian; A blog from BASW CEO Ruth Allen on BASW’s 50th birthday, in which she maps out the future of social work in the context of Covid-19 – online 

BASW at 50: `given what we can achieve with 21,000 members think what we could do with 100,000' – Community Care; On BASW’s 50th birthday, CEO Ruth Allen sets out her plans for developing the organisation as the practitioners' voice and source of support and development – online 

Charity reports lockdown jump in foster care referralsThe Independent; BASW member Lewis Roberts speaks to The Independent on seeing more families struggling as lockdown takes its toll – leaving more children at risk. He explains that the delays in family court proceedings also meant youngsters were spending longer periods in high-risk situations – in print 23/06/2020

BASW PO Gavin Moorghen balances evidence-based needs and the effects of austerity as he gives a social worker’s perspective on BBC Radio 5 Live’s discussion about new research showing an increasing number of children are taken into care from birth – online

Black Lives Matter: social work must respond with action – not platitudes CommunityCare; There has been a weak response from social work leaders to George Floyd's killing. Practitioners must re-evaluate their roles to act as effective allies for people from Black and ethnic minority groups, says BASW’s Wayne Reid – online

Calls for ministers to provide ''leadership and clarity'' on childcareThe Irish News; BASW adds its voice with others calling for health and social care ministers to show leadership –online

Children and Young PersonsThey Work For You; Report on MPs debates on legislation changes to safeguarding children. MP Tim Loughton states The Children 's Commissioner, ADCS and BASW were not consulted – online

MPs vote against scrapping controversial relaxation of children in care dutiesCommunitycare; Report includes BASW’s opposition that the changes are unnecessary and may do harm to children, and that they could pave the way for permanent weakening of safeguarding – online

Data groups help councils in hunt for vulnerableFinancial Times; BASW member Steve Liddicott contributes to piece on algorithms and data-tech use in identifying potential COVID-19 sufferers amongst vulnerable groups – in print 10/06/2020

Hansard Commons SittingDiscussion on children and young persons; Evidence of BASW’s influencing work and lobbying as MPs raise concerns from BASW and other stakeholders on the statutory changes to safeguarding children the Government are pushing through at speed – online 

Eighteen ex-social workers recruited from temporary registerCommunitycare.co.uk; The need to learn lessons from the campaign was raised by BASW England national director Maris Stratulis. "It is really important that the sector learns why ‘The Social Work Together' campaign has had minimal impact.” – online

Children's charity launches legal bid to quash relaxation of children in care duties – Communitycare.co.uk; Coverage of BASW’s – and partners – objection to recently introduced statutory instruments that have in our view, significantly diluted of child safeguarding duties – online 

Engage: Looking after your mental health during pandemicCare Appointments (Web);
Coverage of BASW CEO Ruth Allen call for ‘strategies should be put in place to mitigate the threat to psychological, social and spiritual health posed by the coronavirus' – online 

DfE facing legal challenge over children in care plans – The MJ (Municipal Journal)
BASW joins other organisations in urging the Government to withdraw the statutory instrument, which it says 'risks the welfare and rights of children' – in print 01/06/2020

 

MAY 2020 

Young people’s mental health suffering during lockdown, says charity – The Voice; BASW co-signs a letter from YoungMinds to the government calling for action to limit the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on children as a survey reveals widespread concerns among parents and carers – online 

Charity blasts legislation relaxing duties to children in care – Seniors Housing Weekly News; BASW adds its  voice to the response to changes, warning "hard won rights in law are not simply bureaucratic processes but exist to protect children and young people and promote their well-being" – print 20/05/2020

“No hand sanitiser, no procedures”: Social workers on protecting children in the pandemic – New Statesman; BASW’s Andy Gill and members tell their experiences of working on the frontline with no PPE and a lack of national guidance – online

Social workers with no PPE shut outSunday Mirror; BASW provides a member to discuss how a lack of a regular supply of PPE is limiting safeguarding capability, while SWU’s Carol Reid highlights how austerity has left services less able to deal with the fallout from the pandemic – in print 17/05/2020

BASW member *Honor from London on BBC Radio 5 Live is joined by Barnando’s in a discussion highlighting the challenges in safeguarding vulnerable children during a lockdown when direct contact is limited – online 

Heroic young social carers fast- tracked to join key workforceIrish News (Belfast); BASW NI’s Carolyn Ewart thanked the students and pledged to support them. "Now, more than ever, newly qualified social workers will face testing scenarios” – in print 13/05/2020

Covid-19 pandemic: We have failed the care sector in Northern Ireland, says Human Rights CommissionerVIEW Digital; BASW NI’s Carolyn Ewart highlights the risks "posed by failure to conduct thorough inspections into standards of care" and that regulatory inspections by the RQIA should recommence – online

Grave concerns over low income families: letter to First MinisterNorth Edinburgh News; SASW’s Alistair Brown joins a host of charities and organisations in signing a letter spelling out concerns for the most vulnerable in society to Scotland’s First Minister – online

If U.K. Schools Reopen, Will the Students Return? – New York Times (UK edition); BASW members explain some of the difficulties assessing vulnerable children, especially over videos such as potential “coercing of a situation off camera” – online 

10 social workers have died from Covid-19, official figures showCommunity Care; In response to the government's plan for easing the lockdown, BASW and SWU said "Social workers need to know that they will be protected at work” – online

BASW England’s Rebekah Pierre on BBC Radio Somerset discusses the challenges facing social workers during the pandemic and how the sector is bracing itself for a rise in referrals post-lockdown – online 

Social workers brace for a surge in child protection referrals when schools re-open – The Independent; SWU’s John McGowan calls on the Government to adequately fund social services to deal with expected rise in demand post-lockdown – online 

 

APRIL 2020

Child abuse calls are down 20% – BBC online, BBC R4 Today, BBC Breakfast news; BASW Cymru’s Allison Hulmes adds a social worker perspective to the increased risk to vulnerable children as a result of lockdown, as well as calling for more PPE for social workers – online, TV and radio

Fears Kirklees'' vulnerable children at risk as social services job posts left emptyDewsbury Reporter; Local coverage of SWU’s John McGowan warning over the vacancy rate for social workers before coronavirus was too high, and now will get worse due to the effects of the outbreak – online

The personal stories of more than 130 of those who have died in the Covid-19 pandemic – The Guardian; A tribute to a social worker who died from COVID-19 is included, along with a message from BASW CEO Ruth Allen on the tireless work done at increased risk by social workers – online

Charities urge DfE to change ''misleading'' Covid-19 care leavers guidanceChildren & Young People Now; Government advice states that PPE is not required unless the people being visited are "symptomatic of coronavirus or have a confirmed diagnosis of coronavirus", despite BASW, which has also signed the letter, advising social workers to treat home visits as a "high-risk Covid-19 situation" – online 

Expert Comment: What does COVID-19 mean for UK child safeguarding practice?University of Kent; Organisations supporting professionals will be aware of these increasing pressures and some, such as BASW, the British Association of Social Workers, are keen to identify the impact of COVID-19 upon their workforce. BASW's online survey is evidence of this – online

Social workers ‘under pressure to be unsafe’ – Local Government Chronicle; BASW’s Andy Gill says the 1,600 responses to a survey of members shows huge concern over the availability of PPE and how to use it, and calls for national guidance to “catch up with that reality” – online

Keeping district's children safe is ''our top priority'', says council bossTelegraph & Argus; Local council bosses respond to social worker shortage warnings from SWU’s John McGowan during the pandemic – online

'We have put our lives at risk for the greater good': Sheffield social worker and coronavirus survivor calls for public supportSheffield Star; BASW backs the call from social worker recovering from coronavirus asking members of the public to show their appreciation for her colleagues who put themselves at risk daily to help children and vulnerable people – online

Vacant posts spark worries children could be at risk in Wigan care systemWigan Evening Post; More local coverage of BASW and SWU’s warning over social work shortages and staff pressures that existed pre-virus outbreak and now are worsening – online 

Coronavirus impact on nation's mental healthThe Times; Coverage of a co-signed letter to the Times on the effects the virus and the subsequent lockdown are having on the population, especially those suffering mental health disorders – in print 09/04/2020

Almost a quarter of child social services jobs unfilled in RedbridgeIlford Recorder; SWU’s John McGowan, said social workers are already struggling with the effects of the outbreak, with many off sick or in self-isolation – online 

Covid-19: children''s social care guidance criticised for `unlawfulness'' and approach to PPECommunity Care; "PHE guidance overall does not advise ‘in case' use of PPE to deal with asymptomatic risk," said the letter from association chair Gerry Nosowska and chief executive Ruth Allen – online

BASW helps shape, and provides a member voice, for a BBC Newsnight program on the increased risks the coronavirus and isolation poses to vulnerable children and the extra challenges facing children and families social workers - online (08/04/2020)

Councils' pandemic fight is hampered by central micromanagement – The Guardian; Coverage of BASW’s call for PPE for social workers and social care workers, and our warnings about escalating caseloads and demand while the workforce is depleting – online 

More than 70% of children’s social workers struggled with caseloads on eve of Covid-19 crisis, survey revealsCommunity Care; BASW and SWU comment on how COVID-19 is exacerbating the already-high pressures on workforce, making it much more difficult for practitioners to do their job – online 

Newport AM John Griffiths calls for support for vulnerable – South Wales Argus; Coverage of Wales Anti-Poverty Coalition’s letter co-signed by BASW Cymru calling on Welsh Government to look after the most vulnerable people in society during the COVID-19 crisis – online 

Coronavirus: Fears over social worker sickness levels – Dorset Echo; Local coverage of the call from SWU’s John McGowan for more recognition of social workers and the risks they are taking during the virus as they continue delivering services in communities – online 

Social work teams depleting due to coronavirus, warns BASW as it calls for priority testing for practitioners – Community Care; Ability to assess infection among social workers urgently needed to keep statutory services running, says association chair Gerry Nosowska – online

Almost a fifth Essex's child social services jobs unfilled before coronavirus outbreak – Epping Forest Guardian; Local coverage of SWU’s John McGowan call for urgent extra funding for more social workers to meet increased demand especially as the sector is already struggling with the effects of the outbreak, with many off sick or in self-isolation – online

'I can't know the children are safe': social workers' fears over lockdownGuardian; David Brindle lays bare the reality of frontline children’s social work during coronavirus, with BASW members sharing their experiences and BASW CEO Ruth Allen calling for better national guidance – online

Children across Dorset could be at increased riskBournemouth Daily Echo; Local coverage of SWU’s John McGowan warning that social workers are struggling with the effects of the outbreak, with many off sick or in self-isolation – online

BASW makes fresh plea for PPE as social worker dies from Covid-19Children & Young People Now; Social work leaders have reiterated calls for teams to be issued with personal protective equipment (PPE) after an employee at a London council died from coronavirus – online

Key and home workers struggling with childcare, poll reveals – People Management Online; SWU’s John McGowan gives an insight into social workers, as key workers, being forced to decide between not going to work or leaving their children at risk of the virus – online

Failed placements, online lectures and uncertain futures: Covid-19''s impact on social work studentsCommunity Care; Coverage of BASW’s ongoing survey of how the impact of the crisis on the profession raises concerns of how students are being treated – online

Call for social workers to be recognised for work during coronavirus outbreakWiltshire Gazette & Herald; Local coverage of SWU calling on urgent cash injection for child services, as well as personal protective equipment (PPE) during the pandemic – online

Our friends in needThe MJ (Municipal Journal); Gerry Nosowska, Chair of BASW, pens a letter  on how local government is at the heart of our country's response to COV1D-19, and social workers are central to supporting children, families and adults – in print 01/04/20

Coronavirus crisis: Increasing testing is ''top priority'', Cabinet Minister insistsDaily Express; Social workers last night became latest frontline workforce to beg for PPE. In a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the British Association of Social Workers said its staff lacked even basic hand sanitiser – online

 

MARCH 2020* (Coronavirus outbreak)

BASW CEO Ruth Allen discusses the findings of our survey of social workers’ experiences during the pandemic on BBC 5 Live, accompanied by BASW social worker members providing their direct frontline stories – online 

Social worker one of two employees at council to die after contracting Covid-19 – Community Care; A social worker at a London borough has died after being infected with coronavirus, BASW’s condolence statement and call for PPE is covered – online 

Lockdown proving hard on social services across WiltshireWiltshire Times, Gazette & Herald; SWU General Secretary, John McGowan, speaks to local papers to warn that social workers are already struggling with the effects of the outbreak, with many off sick or in self-isolation, and also comments a rise in caseloads before the virus started – online (1), (2)

Covid-19: AMHPs’ protective equipment needs not sufficiently considered, warn sector leaders – Community Care; BASW CEO Ruth Allen raises concerns about how a stretched workforce will deal with further depletion through self-isolation, sickness and carry out Mental Health Act assessments – online

BASW’s chair of mental health PPEG, Claire Barcham, on BBC News at Nine discusses the increased risks to people suffering mental health disorders and/or stress during isolation and how mental health social workers are trying to work around the barriers of lockdown 30/03/20 [link to follow]

BASW CEO Ruth Allen joins BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour to discuss the findings from our survey of over 1400 social workers, including the risks to them and people using services, lack of the right equipment and guidance and the extra challenges in trying to safeguard vulnerable people 30/03/20 - online

Covid-19: lack of pandemic protocols leaves social work playing catch-up, warns BASW chiefCommunity Care; Too little 'thinking the unthinkable' at the highest levels has left the sector 'starting from a long way back', says Ruth Allen as social workers call for consistent national guidance around coronavirus – online

Coronavirus: Social workers forced to make ‘DIY protection kits’ for visits Children & Young People Now; A BASW survey found that social workers are having to make their own DIY safety kits for visits, often using water, bowls and soap – online

Social workers isolation fearsThe MJ (Municipal Journal); A survey of social workers about the impact of coronavirus by BASW has warned that family abuse, neglect and domestic violence may increase with school closures – in print 26/03/20

BASW professional officer Gavin Moorghen on BBC News at Nine calls for social workers to have the right personal protective equipment (PPE) and highlights how hard the job has become – and the increased risks – in a climate of isolation, especially in children’s services 25/03/20 [link to follow]

Social workers ‘urgently’ need hand sanitizer, survey revealsLocal Gov; A survey of 1400 social workers by BASW has revealed their two biggest concerns are the lack of personal protective equipment and guidance on how to safeguard vulnerable children and families effectively during a lockdown – online

Southend social workers could be asked to visit people with coronavirusSouthend Advertiser; Local media highlights risks to social workers from BASW’s survey and carry CEO Ruth Allen’s quotes calling for them to be “afforded the same commitment for safety as our health care colleagues” – online

Covid-19: increased isolation ‘risks worsening level and severity of domestic abuse’ – Community Care; BASW has already raised concerns about social workers’ ability to identify abuse, including domestic abuse, under the current circumstances – online

Social workers call for clarity on carrying out statutory dutiesLocal Gov; BASW survey shows social workers are concerned they will be unable to safeguard families and carry out their statutory duties in the face of mass isolation; BASW calls for more information on the implications for registration – online

Coronavirus: BASW urges more support for social workersChildren & Young People Now; Social workers will need clearer guidance and professional support and resources to help vulnerable families and children once emergency legislation come into effect, says BASW – online 

Revealed: Frontline Social Workers Could Be Without Protective Equipment Until Wednesday – Huffington Post UK; Chair of BASW Gerry Nosowska said: “There needs to be no further delay in this and there needs to be enough PPE for all social workers to do their essential work. We will keep advocating for the equipment and guidance social workers need to do their jobs.” – online

Covid-19: how has social work responded to the coronavirus crisis? – Community Care; Coverage of our survey launch of social workers about their workplace challenges, fears and calls for best practice. BASW statement on early findings indicate widespread about how to carry out statutory duties in the face of mass population isolation - online 

Frontline Social Workers Visiting Vulnerable And Elderly Face Lack Of Equipment And GuidanceHuffington Post UK; BASW helps shape breaking article and announces our survey launch to canvass social worker experiences from the frontline during the coronavirus – online

 

FEBRUARY 2020

Interview: BASW chair Gerry Nosowska on the future of social work – Social Care Today; In a wide-ranging interview, BASW chair Gerry Nosowska talks about recruitment and retentions issues in social work, working conditions and what is urgently needed for social work and social care from the Government’s next Budget – online

Narrative of social workers stifled by admin needs revision, finds study Community Care; BASW England chair Andy Gill argues this new research supports findings and aims of BASW England’s 80-20 Campaign for more support and resources to free social workers to do direct relationship based social work – online  

SASW’s Alistair Brown on BBC Scotland says social workers are working extremely hard and that it is the failure to adequately resource third sector agencies to support the delivery of Community Packback Orders that is the reason for a drop in their use – online and TV

Two in five practitioners now logged on to Social Work England accounts for posting CPD Community Care; BASW England reaffirms position that the new regulator needs registered social worker representation on the board, in article analysing Social Work England’s first few months as regulator – online

Help and support when it’s needed – Edinburgh Evening News; BASW professional officer Gavin Moorghen talks about how a career in social work is challenging, but rewarding in a Jobs & Careers feature – print 06/02/2020

AMHP workforce shrank by 4% last year, finds survey – Community Care; Feature article highlights BASW’s concerns on workforce shortages, including our work with the APPG on social work to call for a statutory minimum number of AMHPs in each area – online

Ask the ExpertSocial Work magazine; BASW professional officer Gavin Moorghen answers a question on “muddled responsibilities” between children’s social workers and police over who takes the lead on investigations – online and print

 

JANUARY 2020

Why we changed careers to work with childrenChildren & Young People Now; BASW member Helen Gormley and SWU general secretary John McGowan talk about their routes into social work and how austerity is increasing vacancy rates – online

Rise in children involved in gangs described as real concern – Lowestoft Journal; Julia Winkless, chairwoman of the BASW Ipswich and Suffolk branch says the statistics on gangs reflects what social workers are seeing on the ground, adding greater awareness of the issues of gangs and child sexual exploitation is needed – print 24/01/19

Council considers recruiting social workers from overseas – Children & Young People Now; BASW England national director Maris Stratulis emphasises the need to improve working conditions to stabilise vacancy rates, and calls for a smooth process for international social workers choosing to work in the UK – online

Adoption not always best for children – The Guardian ; BASW members Prof Brid Featherstone and Prof Anna Gupta react to Government’s call for a greater focus on adoption by highlighting the harsh severance of the legal relationship between those adopted and their birth family, and how it is out of line with the emotional realities for most involved – online

Children’s minister’s call for directors to prioritise adoption lambasted by sector heads – Community Care; A joint statement issued via BASW by members Prof Brid Featherstone and Prof Anna Gupta express “concern” at the government’s moves to prioritise adoption – online

SWU’s John McGowan speaks to BBC Radio Kent to highlight the increasing pressures, and caseloads, on social workers, and where improvements can be made, after Medway local authority is criticised for its safeguarding of children (Go to 2:11:17 – 2:20:46) – online

Adult social care reform – IndependentLiving.co.uk; Showcase BASW’s consultation on social care paper that promotes independent living – online

‘The beating heart of the team’: how personal assistants can free social workers from the admin grind – Community Care; A feature piece highlights BASW’s  80-20 campaign and the bleak ratio of case-management grind vs time with families that professionals can face – online

Two competitions recognising the contribution of Scottish social workers to merge – CareAppointments.co.uk; The Scottish Social Services Awards (run by the SSSC) and Scottish Association of Social Work Awards (run by SASW) will now be known as the Scottish Social Services Awards – online

Rise in children involved in gangs is 'of real concern' – Ipswich Star, Bury Mecury and four more local newspapers; BASW Ipswich branch chair, Julia Winkless, warns about how Suffolk members are calling for greater awareness of the issues of gangs and child sexual exploitation after seeing a spike in referrals – online, (1)

Evidence must inform health and social care planning post-Brexit, or the most vulnerable will sufferPublic Sector Focus magazine; SASW’s Emily Galloway calls on personal experience in arguing for an evidence-based, rational and human approach to health and social care during and after Brexit – online

BASW England’s Gavin Moorghen discusses the probation system and the role of social workers within a multi-disciplinary team – Voice of Islam podcast – online from 36:32 to 45:28

 

DECEMBER 2019

BASW NI’s Andy McClenaghan joins Radio Ulster’s Sunday with Dearbhail to talk about poverty from a social work perspective, as part of welfare reform campaign group, Cliff Edge Coalition – online

BASW NI's Carolyn Ewart talks about support packages and better cross communication on BBC Radio Foyle, following the tragic death of three-year-old Kayden McGuinness in Derry – online

Social Work and Human Rights guides launched by BASW – Family Law Week; Coverage of our launch of new resources to help social workers be at the forefront of defending existing human rights and building new rights and protections for the most vulnerable – online

The new children’s social work model aiming to increase ‘face-to-face time’ by 60% – Community Care; BASW comments on Frontline’s blueprint for children’s social work, welcoming their input in a debate in which our ongoing 80-20 Campaign has provided a strong voice for over a year – online

Social workers win top awards – Cambridge Live, Essex Live, various others; Winners from the Social Worker of the Year Awards, including BASW members and awards sponsored by BASW, are lauded by regional local authorities – online

Election 2019Children & Young People Now; An election overview highlights how our manifesto calls for parliamentary candidates from all parties to pledge their support for social workers and the children and families who use their services – print 01/12/19

 

NOVEMBER

Is it right to use AI to identify children at risk of harm? – The Guardian; Machine learning is being used to help protect children, but it raises ethical questions for BASW England’s national director, Maris Stratulis, while BASW member Steve Liddicott highlights how it could help – online

Mental health services cut due to funding in South WestBBC News South West & radio; BASW comments on short-term contracts for mental health counselling services, stating they create instability and that we need long-term funding so young people can get the help they need – online, (2)

From cradle to care – BBC Radio 4; BASW professional officer Gavin Moorghen and BASW member Prof. Brid Featherstone contribute to an insightful discussion on the rise in number of new-borns entering care – online

With an upcoming election, BASW CEO Ruth Allen discusses social care on LBC Radio’s Eddie Mair show, emphasising how investment in social care and social work would alleviate pressures on the NHS – online​

Councils urged to tackle AMHP salary disparities and stress in national workforce plan – Community Care; BASW raises concerns about workforce shortages, including a report this year by us and the all-party parliamentary group on social work calling for a statutory minimum number of AMHPs in each area – online

Nearly a third of neglected children are at crisis point – Blackpool Gazette; Spire FM; Bucks Free Press; A number of local papers report on the Government’s Children In Need 2019 stats, with guidance from BASW – online, (2), (3)

The Children Act 1989: 30 years on – Children & Young People Now; BASW’s Children & Families PPEG lead June Thoburn reflects on the impact of the Act and how it’s core principals may be under threat – print November 2019 issue

Pledge to close all child prisons in election manifestos, urge campaigners – Children & Young People Now; BASW namechecked as part of a coalition of 70 organisations calling for all prisons for children to be closed and young people only prosecuted as a last resort – online

Ask the Expert – Social Work News; BASW England national director Maris Stratulis answers questions on social work stigmas and why admin support has been cut in a ‘Ask the Expert’ feature online

SWU general secretary John McGowan discusses working conditions after a Government report on Stoke’s struggling children’s services – BBC Radio Stokeonline

Thresholds may be stabilising, as growth in referrals leading to no action slowsCommunity Care; BASW professional officer, Gavin Moorghen, comments on the Government’s latest Children in Need stats, and highlights an environment of increased poverty, diminishing resources and underfunding – online

Universal DisCreditThe Canary, independent journalism; BASW contributes to a powerful new film that shines a light on the devastating consequences of Universal Credit – online 

What social care bodies want from the upcoming general election Community Care; BASW calls for an end to austerity policies and welfare cuts, manageable workloads for social workers and increased funding for social care – online

 

OCTOBER

Unions 'echo concerns' of Children's Services whistleblower; SWU write to North East Lincolnshire Council regarding concerns raised by social workers over caseloads, saying that they "need to get this right" or they risk doing a disservice to the children – online

Put an end to PIP and Universal Credit – Belfast Media Group; BASW’s research and messaging on Universal Credit driving more children into poverty is highlighted in opinion piece – print 26/10/19

Few social workers feel training provides ‘digital readiness’ for practice, research finds – Community Care; Practitioners tell SCIE and BASW study they want new workplace systems that prioritise relationship-based practice and augment rather than replace work carried out by humans – online

Complicating pensions – The Financial Times; BASW’s description of £2.5bn allocation to social care in the 2019 autumn spending round as merely a “sticking plaster” is highlighted in a piece about planning for your future – print 09/10/19

Challenge Poverty Week – warning about number of Scots strugglingThe National.scot; SASW highlights the increasing poverty rates in Scotland and promotes BASW’s Anti-poverty practice guide – online

Call for faster action to combat child povertyGlasgow Evening Times; BASW and SASW highlights child poverty figures and demand on social work during Challenge Poverty Week – online

Social workers using own money to make sure families eat – Care Appointments.co.uk; Food bank referrals have become an every-day part of social work practice across Scotland – with social workers even using their own money to make sure families have enough to eat, says SASW – online

Jobs with integrity – Target Jobs; BASW’s Gavin Moorghen gives a rundown of the ethics behind social work practice and why it’s a great career choice – online

Welsh social workers fear wearing ID badges, BASW says after ‘appalling’ assault – Community Care; Abuse of practitioners commonplace, warns BASW Cymru's Allison Hulmes, as woman jailed for attack on social work assistant – online

 

SEPTEMBER

The small social work kitbag making a big difference to children’s lives – Care Appointments; More coverage of the TLC Kitbag campaign, and of BASW England’s 80:20 Campaign to increase time spent on relationship-based practice - online

'When is it going to happen?' - 'delay' to children's centres consultation – East Anglian Daily Times; BASW and Chair of our Ipswich branch, Julia Winkless, say the delay to a consultation on closing children’s centres is "unsettling" for everyone concerned – online

Kitbags developed to help social workers talk to children – Nursery World; Social workers are trialing the use of finger puppets and a ‘talking stick’ to use in their conversations with young children, a tool championed in our 80:20 Campaignonline

Focus on socio-economic rights and avoid stigma to tackle poverty, BASW guide urges social workers – Community Care; Coverage of BASW’s launch of The Anti-Poverty Practice Guide for Social Work, designed to provide practitioners with practical suggestions to address poverty in their casework – online

'It would be tragic if they closed', parents on threatened children's centres – IpswichStar.co.uk / BuryMercury.co.uk; BASW Ipswich & Suffolk branch member Julia Winkless, with BASW professional officer Keri O’Riordan, secure a meeting with councillor Gordon Jones to protest closure of children’s centres – online

University Student Wins National Essay Writing Prize – Worc.ac.uk; Acknowledgement from Worcester University for our student member Jennie Simpson for winning SWU’s World Social Work Day Essay Competition – online

PSNI chief: ‘Children not seen as a weapon in the fight against paramilitary crime’ – viewdigital.org; Northern Ireland police chief Simon Byrne is forced to retract his comments about taking children away from paramilitaries as BASW NI’s Carolyn Ewart describes them as “inappropriate” – online

Fewer hearings, less stress and more social work involvement: how new regulator is reforming fitness to practise – Community Care; BASW & SWU’s Lien Watts describes Social Work England’s new focus on coming to timely decisions as a “real positive”, for lengthy processes create “huge stress” social workers – online

Javid unveils short-term social care funding boost in spending review Community Care; In reaction to the Chancellor’s Spending Review 2019, BASW’s highlights the absence of a long-term solution for social care and lack of detail for struggling children’s services – online

Workforce skills for the futureChildren & Young People Now; BASW professional officer Gavin Moorghen argues for a return to more relationship-based practice, citing BASW England’s 80/20 Campaign – print 01/09/2019

 

AUGUST

BASW Cymru national director, Allison Hulmes, outlines her support for a new bill in Wales that aims to outlaw disciplining/chastisement as a defence for child-smacking; Voice of Islam UK radioonline

Social work; Children's Workforce Qualifications and Training GuideChildren & Young People Now; BASW professional officer Gavin Moorghen reiterates BASW’s position on NAAS and that our focus is to support social workers whatever their decision – online

BASW professional officer, Keri O’Riordan, delves into the highs and lows of being a social worker and why the profession is challenging yet rewarding; BBC Radio Londononline

Just visiting, still practicing – OnMedica.com/blog; An interesting blog by GP Chris Preece explores the risk social workers take on duty and uses stats from BASW/SWU’s working conditions campaign – online

Social care worker arrest prompts review of teenager care – bbc.co.uk/northern-ireland; BASW provides a short comment on need for robust recruitment process – online

Social workers are scared to tell strangers what they do – thetimes.co.uk; After a headline grabbing murder, BASW provides a case study on the very mixed, multi-level relationship social workers have with society and people’s perception of the profession – online

Social work: 'I had a parent screaming foul names at me' – bbc.co.uk/news; BASW and SWU reveal levels of violence and abuse social workers can be exposed to, while calling for protection parity with our emergency colleagues – online

Revealed: Shocking scale of Birmingham youth centre closures as knife crime rockets across city – Birmingham Mail; BASW’s Birmingham branch contributes to an in-depth feature on the results of unrelenting funding cuts – online

Woman killed in Birmingham was social care worker carrying out home visits, reports say – Community Care; BASW expresses condolences and highlights risks for social care professionals carrying out their duties – online

Post-ASYE support crucial to improving social worker retention, research suggests– Community Care; SWU’s John McGowan says the research underlined the “incredibly challenging” nature of the profession – online

The Universal Credit two-child limit: all cost, no benefit – SluggerO’Toole.com; BASW NI’s Andy Mclenaghan blogs on the callous and degrading aspects of the UC two-child limit and ramifications for women and social workers – online

Public Back More Funding For Care Workers – therooftop.news.co.uk; SWU’s John McGowan says cuts to social work are a false economy and urges the government to listen to the public and invest in vital adult social care – online

Case study: Newly qualified social worker Prospects (online and magazine); BASW member Daniel Sillman gives professional advice in a leading career focussed journal for students thinking of studying social work – online

Welsh smacking ban takes step forwardWrexham.com; BASW Cymru’s evidence says, ‘reasonable chastisement’ argument gives a clear message that children do not enjoy equal rights to adults – online

Final Social Work England standards remove duty to report impact of resources on safe practice - Community Care; Sarah Blackmore, Social Work England’s executive director of standards, said the move came in response to organisations including BASW commenting that the clause put too much pressure on practitioners – online

 

JULY 

Less than one in ten social workers have workload covered when they do training – Community Care; SWU’s John McGowan, highlights BASW and SWU’s working conditions campaign which had shown “the difficulties faced by social workers and the impact of the lack of training and career development” – online

New Mental Health Act must require minimum number of AMHPs, says parliamentary inquiry Community Care; A key recommendation from an inquiry into the implications of revamped legislation on compulsory mental health care for social work, carried out by the all-party parliamentary group on social work and British Association of Social Workersonline

Adopt social model to deal with mental health – LocalGov.co.uk; Government Business; BASW and the APPG make nine recommendations to the government in co-developed new inquiry; Social Workers and a New Mental Health Act,– online (1), (2)

Low take-up of NAAS down to social workers being unsure of benefits – Community Care; ...the British Association of Social Workers (BASW) has said that it will support members undertaking the tests, but does not endorse the scheme on value for money grounds – online

A case of cuts and confidence crisis – Municipal Journal; BASW England’s open letter urging Conservative party leadership candidates to prioritise the much-delayed adult green paper dovetails with an ADASS survey highlighting pessimism in the sector – print (05/07/2019)

How learning disabilities framework for adult social workers fills longstanding guidance gap – Community Care; Capabilities statement outlines expectations of social workers, says BASW England professional officer Becky Reynolds – online

 

JUNE

BASW Adults PPEG vice chair, Erin King, speaks on radio about the group’s open letter to candidates for the Tory party leadership, urging them to prioritise the delayed adult green paper – United Christian Broadcasters (UCB) – online

Kids can’t wait for new income supplement, warns Scotland’s civic society – Scottish Housing News; SASW signs joint letter to call on First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to speed up the introduction of a new income supplement to tackle child poverty – online

'Duty to notify' plan to tackle human trafficking – BBC News Scotland; Alistair Brown, national director of SASW, welcomes plans but stresses the need for a streamlined process for over-worked social workers – online

Social Work students failing to get work placementsIrish Examiner; Colin Reid, chair of BASW NI, points at Brexit further affecting work opportunities for social workers – online

BASW International Committee chair, David Jones, gives a social work insight into three recent serious case reviews – BBC Radio Northampton – listen here

Social work sector must embrace technology or risk being ‘left behind’, says BASW chief – Community Care; BASW chief executive Ruth Allen maps out a joint project with SCIE to improve practitioners’ digital skills - online

 

MAY

During Foster Care Fortnight, BASW member Zoe Stanyard gives a social worker’s perspective on adoption; BBC Four Women’s Hour – listen here

BASW chair Gerry Nosowska looks at deteriorating working conditions and an increase in caseload as drivers behind staff shortages; BBC Radio Three Counties – listen here

BASW helps BBC Newsnight put together piece on, and calls for regulation of, ‘alternative accommodation’ for 16-17 yr olds – BBC Newsnight - online

BASW International Committee chair, David Jones, on the reasons behind Northampton’s broken children services and its predicted future – BBC Radio Northampton – listen here

Parking tax will deprive children of safe space, say social workers – The Times (online), Daily Mail Scotland (print); SASW defends social workers in the ‘parking wars’ at Scotland’s local authorities – online and print 29/05/2019

Social workers plead for parking tax exemption for 'safe space' cars – The Scottish Herald; SASW defends social workers in the ‘parking wars’ at Scotland’s local authorities – print 27/05/2019

Abused young people in Lancashire ‘are at increased risk’ Lancashire Post, Blackpool Gazette; BASW influences several local papers to cover Government statistics on rising child referrals and section 47s – online, (2)

Government must consult on social work pressures by end of year, MPs say – Community Care; Select committee urges Government to implement BASW England 80:20 Campaign’s recommendations – online

 

APRIL

Union warns of deepening social work crisis in Scotland – Children & Young People Now; SASW warns social work crisis could deepen further – online

Heads of children’s services pledge after red tape call The Municipal Journal; Children's services directors have insisted they are 'committed' to protecting face-to-face following 80:20 Campaign – online and print

Can you put a price on losing our youth? – The Voice; BASW England’s Wayne Reid writes about the rise in knife crime against the backdrop of austerity policies – print 11/04/2019

SWU general secretary, John McGowan, promotes BASW/SWU’s Working Conditions campaign on the radio – BBC Radio Stoke; listen here

 

MARCH

For social workers on the front-line it has never been more difficult – Metro.co.uk; BASW England committee member Lewis Roberts tells of increasing pressure on social workers – online

Support for Öcalan hunger strikers – The Guardian; BASW Cymru’s Allison Hulmes signs letter in support of PKK leader – online

SWU general secretary, John McGowan, promotes BASW/SWU’s Working Conditions campaign on the radio – BBC Radio Humbersidelisten here

How and when should we use technology in social work? – Children & Young People Now; BASW England’s 80:20 Campaign is highlighted in a blog – online

Councils boost adult social worker employmentCommunity Care; BASW chair Gerry Nosowska on real term decrease in pay of social workers – online

Social work crisis as one in six posts are unfilledSunday Mirror; BASW & SWU Working Conditions research and campaign highlighted – print 03/03/2019

 

FEBRUARY

Under-pressure social workers facing increasing caseloadsBirmingham Mail; BASW’s Gavin Moorghen promotes the Working Conditions campaign – online

Fred & Rose West, The Real Story with Trevor McDonald ITV; BASW member John Fitzgerald recounts his investigations in the aftermath – TV and catchup

Cuts to children’s services are pushing young people into violenceIndependent; BASW member Eddie O’Hara on the perfect storm facing youngsters – online

Fund play materials for social workersChildren & Young People Now; BASW England’s Maris Stratulis talks 80:20 Campaign and the use of Kitbag – online

Funding challenges facing children’s services explored by Committee – Parliament UK; BASW chief executive Ruth Allen provides evidence – online and catchup

One in 10 adopted children goes to same-sex couples Daily Express; BASW member Brid Featherstone uses research from the Adoption Enquiry – online

Frontline drops compulsory master's from fast-track scheme – Community Care; Academics, campaigners and BASW warn that fast-track routes into social work are potentially less academically rigorous – online

Social workers seek parking tax waiverThe Scottish Herald; SASW’s Trisha Hall demands social workers are given same treatment as NHS staff over parking waiver – print 12/02/2019

NI social workers ''still living with death threats from Troubles''Belfast Telegraph; The launch of BASW Northern Ireland’s ‘Social Work during the Troubles’ is covered – print and online

Emotional correctness is priority in gender debateSunday Times (Scotland); Maggie Mellon argues the government's support for transgender young people "has been framed as a children's rights issue but is a protection issue – print 03/02/2019

 

JANUARY

Care providers: Perfect storm of Brexit will risk most vulnerable – Sunday Post; SASW call for an independent evaluation of the impact of Brexit on health and social care – online

Government failing to understand demand for children's servicesThe Independent; BASW England’s Maris Stratulis calls for better understanding and more funding for straining social services – online

Child protection services still failing kids after Baby P deathMirror ; BASW adds balance by highlighting rise in demand combined with cut to resources – online

The cost of living for the frontlineChildren & Young People Now; BASW highlights Working Conditions campaign and survey results to show challenges facing social workers – print 01/01/2019

Cuts to social care damaging children in borough – Wigan Post ; BASW highlights how cuts to local authorities has damaged the service provided to vulnerable families – online

Social work funding and working conditions – BASW England professional officer, Becky Reynolds, appears on Victoria Derbyshire – TV 

 

2017-2018 media highlights

BASW chair, Gerry Nosowska, speaks to Radio Cornwall about social workers working conditions Dec 2018

BASW England professional officer, Becky Reynolds, highlights the impact of austerity on the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire show Oct 2018

Coverage and commentary in the Guardian on BASW/SWU’s launch of the 2018 Working Conditions survey Oct 2018

BASW member Dr Donna Peach on BBC Sunday Politics talks austerity and working conditions in children in care debate Sept 2018

BASW England professional officer, Gavin Moorghen, discusses the rise in child trafficking Sept 2018

SWU’s John McGowan talks to BBC Radio Teeside arguing for social workers to be included in a new bill to further protect ‘emergency workers’ Sept 2018

BASW chief executive Ruth Allen in the Guardian calling for more recognition for social workers Jun 2018 

BASW member Joe Godden blogs in the Guardian in response to call for social workers to speak up more for the profession Jan 2018

Coverage and commentary in the Guardian on launch of BASW’s Adoption Enquiry Jan 2018  

A BBC's Victoria Derbyshire  piece on the life changing imapct of social work featuring BASW England ambassador Ian Thomas and BASW England national director Maris Stratulis Nov 2017

BASW England professional officer, Wayne Reid, talks about fostering on Victoria Derbyshire Aug 2017