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Social workers welcome the publication of serious case reviews

Date:14 JUN 2010

Social workerThe British Association of Social Workers (BASW) has welcomed the news that government has asked local safeguarding children boards, and directors of children's services to publish the overview report and the executive summary of all new serious case reviews.

Last week the government announced that it is commissioning an independent review of child protection and social work in England. In addition to the review, Children's Minister Tim Loughton wrote to all the chairs of local safeguarding children boards, and directors of children's services to ensure that all SCRs will be published after they have been redacted and anonymised except where it would affect the welfare of any surviving children and their siblings.

Nushra Mansuri, BASW joint manager in England, said that social workers "have nothing to fear from the public knowing how difficult our job is".

"SCRs are a learning tool that enables professionals to examine the processes and outcomes in a case in order to determine what could have been done more effectively. We welcome the government's review of the current system as it does have some shortcomings

"BASW is encouraging Local Safeguarding Children's Boards, local authorities and governments to make the fullest use of SCR's in demonstrating that lessons have been learnt - we know that there are training, staffing and resourcing issues for all Social

Workers and we need to address this as a matter of urgency," Ms Mansuri said.

A survey of child protection Social Workers conducted by BASW last week found that just 5% of child protection social workers say their team is fully staffed with permanent social workers. The survey also showed that 63% of respondents say their department is under-staffed, even including agency staff.