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BASW AGM 2020 report

A vision for the next five years

Yesterday, at the first online Annual General Meeting in our history, the British Association of Social Workers (BASW) agreed our organisational Mission and our Vision for social work and social workers up to 2025.

Our new Vision for 2025 is that “Social work will be a thriving, influential, respected profession, improving lives and upholding people’s rights across the UK.”

Our organisation Mission clarifies what we do, why we do it and who for. 

BASW acts…

  • For social workers:  Supporting, protecting and inspiring social workers in all roles, and the next generations of professionals.
  • For social work:  Developing professional ethics, practice, knowledge, research and learning.
  • For a better society:  Speaking out for social work and social workers on social justice, equality, poverty, human rights, oppression and other vital social issues in the UK and internationally.

Priorities to fulfil our Mission and move towards our Vision in 2021 were also set out, and include; support for more social workers to improve practice through learning, work more closely with people with lived experience, promoting the value of social work, promotion of the role of social work across multidisciplinary teams, campaigning, promoting anti-oppressive and ethical work widely, challenging social injustice and racism and promoting human rights.  We will also continue to develop our international work and adapt our work to meet the needs of our members, people using services and society throughout Covid 19.

BASW chief executive, Ruth Allen, outlined that the 2025 Mission and Vision follows the success of our unifying 5 year ‘2020 Vision’ for the association – to be the strong, independent voice of social work and social workers. This intention is embedded in the association now and we look forward to new challenges and growth in the association including more focus on developing the profession of social work, our partnerships,  including with people who use services, and raising social workers’ voices for a more just and better society, alongside growth of the association.

A full report was given on progress since the last AGM, with full details available in the Annual Report 2019.

Council updates

BASW welcomed several new members to Council at the AGM, these include Lewis Roberts as Vice Chair; Martin Sexton as Chair, Policy Ethics & Human Rights Committee; Lindsey Young, Appointed Director - Scotland Committee; Mandeep Gill, Elected Director; Charmaine Malcolm, Co-opted Director and Hari Sewell, Co-opted Director.

The AGM also received reports from the Social Workers Benevolent Trust, Social Workers’ Educational Trust and the International Development Fund.

This year BASW is marking its 50th year anniversary and a special film was played to mark the activities so far and share up-coming plans.


A total of 11 motions were heard and all were passed.  The motions were shared with members on the BASW website ahead of the AGM and comments were invited in advance of the meeting.  Members had further opportunities to comment at the AGM before taking part in online votes.  A full list of motions passed at the AGM are available here and sumarised below.   

Motion 1

To receive the report of the Auditors and the Statement of Accounts for the period 1st October 2018 to 30th September 2019

Motion 2

To appoint Dains as the Association’s Auditors for the year 1st October 2020 to 30th September 2021.

Motion 3

This AGM affirms that social work is a human rights and anti racist profession.  (Please read full text of the motion)

Motion 4

This AGM supports the protests organised by Black Lives Matter and other organisations and recognises that the discrimination experienced by Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic individuals and communities requires urgent action. (Please read full text of the motion)

Motion 5

The AGM calls for BASW to campaign further against discrimination and suffering caused by No Recourse to Public Funds.  (Please read full text of the motion)

Motion 6

The AGM calls for BASW to lead the way, in coproduction with Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities, in educating social work organisations about best practice within our diverse Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities.  (Please read full text of the motion)

Motion 7

This AGM supports the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s intended application for judicial challenge of the Secretary of State for failing to implement the movement of people with Learning Disabilities and/or Autism out of hospital by 2018.  (Please read full text of the motion)

Motion 8

This AGM notes that diversity in gender identity is rapidly evolving and social work must match the pace.  (Please read full text of the motion)

Motion 9

This AGM recognises the vital work that branches do and clarifies BASW's future vision and commitment to their role.  (Please read full text of the motion)

Motion 10

This AGM recognises the significant work undertaken by the Social Workers’ Benevolent Trust and BASW’s continued financial support.  (Please read full text of the motion)

Motion 11

This AGM  notes with sadness the passing of BASW member Terry Bamford, recognises Terry’s substantial contribution to UK and international social work and supports an appropriate memorial.  (Please read full text of the motion)