2019

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

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