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The positives of adult social work: What service users say

There is an important and greatly worrying contradiction at the heart of what I have to say today. Today’s summit on adult social work symbolizes many positives. It symbolizes the contribution that adult social work has to make in many people’s lives and counters the public and political preoccupation with child protection social work and children and family social work, which means adult social work is often overshadowed and even forgotten. So thanks for this reminder of adult social work’s importance and centrality. Social workers with adults can make a key difference. At the same time, today’s event is unfortunately also a powerful reminder of the worrying times now facing adult social work. This is not about optimism or pessimism. It’s about getting the culture and the funding right – being honest about the problems we face with both.