4 Biggest Social Work Stories You Might Have Missed Last Week (03/10/16)...
Jo Brand's new social work comedy aired, annual adoption numbers are falling sharply and prominent sector figures and organisations are uniting to oppose the council children's social care 'exemption clause.' Read on for these stories, and more...
4. Jo Brand's New Social Work Comedy 'Damned' Airs
Jo Brand's new comedy 'Damned,' which follows practitioners in the children's services department of a council social work office, aired on Channel 4 last Tuesday at 10pm.
'Damned' was co-written by Brand with the aim of countering the negative perception of social workers by the public, and is the follow-up to a pilot first aired in 2014.
Also starring Alan Davies and Kevin Eldon, the show shines a light on the difficulties social workers face on a daily basis in a similar vein to how Brand's previous critically-lauded sitcom 'Getting On' followed geriatric nurses.
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3. New Social Work Support Staff Qualification to Be Piloted in Wales
A higher education qualification for social work support staff is being trialed in 22 Welsh Councils from October in a scheme jointly run by local authorities, the Care Council for Wales and the Open University.
The qualification - named the Certificate of Higher Education in Social Care Practice - was inspired by the Social Services and Wellbeing Wales Act (2014) which set out that anyone involved in assessments must have a certain knowledge, skills and competence foundation.
The curriculum was developed by the three aforementioned bodies, and will include different models, issues and approaches used when assessing different categories of service user, alongside the psychology, social contexts and professional values required.
2. Annual Adoption Figures Fall Sharply
Adoption figures have fallen by 12 percent from 2015 to 2016 in the first decline for four years, according to new figures released by the Department for Education last week.
A total of 4,690 looked-after children were adopted this year, compared 2015's figure of 5,360 - a decline that was expected due to falling numbers of children being placed for adoption recently.
This effect originated in a September 2013 ruling from James Munby over the Re B-S case, which criticised the 'sloppy practice' of social workers and stating that local authorities must explore all alternatives to adoption before bringing a case to court.
1. Organisations and Experts Unite to Oppose Council Children's Services 'Exemption Clause'
Together for Children, a group representing 40 children's social care experts and organisations, has condemned the government's plans to let councils apply for exemption from their statutory duties.
if the new Children and Social Work bill passes through Parliament, provisions for Councils to test new methods of delivering social care outside requirements currently imposed by children's social care legislation will be ratified.
The group argues that the bill, if passed, poses a 'huge threat' to vulnerable children and young people as it rescinds their rights and exposes them to a 'postcode lottery of protection'.