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SASW meets with Craig Hoy MSP

This week, SASW National Director, Alison Bavidge, met with the Shadow Minister for for Mental Health and Social Care, Craig Hoy MSP in the Scottish Parliament.

During Mental Health Awareness Week, SASW briefed opposition MSPs on the serious pressures faced by social workers and the considerable toll this is placing on their mental health. Read our letter here.

This secured a meeting with Mr Hoy who was interested in finding out how he and his colleagues could support SASW's campaign for improvements. Mr Hoy, who is a former local councillor and current member of the Cross Party Group on Mental Health, agreed that more needs to be done to improve mental wellbeing and working conditions for social workers.

Alison explained to him SASW's vision for a trusted, accessible and supported social work profession that has real autonomy, a clear career pathway with training and development, a strong connection with communities and that practices in early intervention, relationship building and directly therapeutic work. With a National Care Service on the horizon, the opportunity to make this a reality has never been greater

While the Scottish Conservatives have reservations about the Scottish Government's proposals for a National Care Service on the basis that it centralises authority and accountability for services, Mr Hoy explained that he welcomed the principles in the Feeley Review and wants to see local delivery of social work services. He agreed to work with SASW to press for improvements for the profession by asking questions to Ministers once the scope of the National Care Service is known.

It is reassuring to have the support of the main opposition party in Scotland to raise the visibility of social work, keep the campaign for improvements high on the politicial agenda and to hold Ministers to account. 

For more details about SASW's political lobbying and campaign work, please contact our Policy Officer on jonny.adamson@basw.co.uk