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Northern Ireland minister to meet NIASW over bureaucracy survey

Northern Ireland’s health minister Edwin Poots has agreed to meet social workers in the country to discuss their concern that excessive paperwork is stopping them from seeing families.

Mr Poots agreed to the meeting, to be held on 14 January, following the launch of a survey by the Northern Ireland Association of Social Work (NIASW), part of BASW, highlighting concerns within the profession.
 
The survey found social workers were frustrated that bureaucracy meant they were spending less than a third of their time with clients.
It also revealed how more than two thirds of them were working more than there contracted hours to cope with the pressure of work, with half putting in between 20 and 60 hours extra a month.
 
NIASW manager Carolyn Ewart said: "Following the successful launch of NIASW's survey last month, Social Work not Paper Work: Cutting Bureaucracy in Child Care Social Work, we are delighted that Mr Poots has requested a meeting to talk about our findings.
 
“We look forward to discussing the reality of life as a social work practitioner with the minister and highlighting the current imbalance with the level of bureaucracy that social workers must navigate.
 
“It is evidence that the social work voice is being heard and the difference we can make.”