50 More Social Workers For Suffolk

Social workers in Suffolk are to have their workloads slashed, thanks to 50 more staff being recruited in the light of the case of Baby P.

It is part of a new plan announced by council chiefs today which will step up protection for vulnerable youngsters living across the county.

Bosses at Suffolk County Council say that having 50 more social workers will help identify children who are at-risk in the earliest possible stages. The £3.8m price tag will also fund 25 family support workers.

Now the council is urging people in Suffolk to think about training to become social workers.

Council leader Jeremy Pembroke said that the money will come out of the £6m savings the council has made this year by making efficiencies and cutting back on red tape. He said £1.4m had already been invested in child protection.

“I’ve always said that our priority is to protect the most vulnerable and it is my job as leader to ensure that we are delivering the best possible services for the children of Suffolk,” he said.

The announcement follows a government request to all councils to review their social work arrangements, following the tragedy of Baby P in Haringey. The toddler died after sustaining horrific injuries from his mother, her boyfriend and another man.

Across Suffolk there are currently 390 youngsters in the most vulnerable at-risk category, all of whom are dealt with by 60 social workers.

Due to a current rise in demand, social workers are taking on more cases, averaging 25 per each, which the council says will be slashed to 15 once staff numbers are boosted.

The council says demand has increased partly because it uses better systems of identifying problems and intervening earlier.