Social worker removed from register for sexually abusing a minor

A man who sexually abused a minor (referred to as ‘Ms A’) has been removed from the Social Care Register by an independent committee of the General Social Care Council (GSCC).

The social worker, who was referred to as Mr X in order to protect the identity of the child, was alleged to have sexually abused Ms A repeatedly between the years 1999 and 2005. She was aged 9 or 10 years old when the abuse started.

Ms A, who was not present at the hearing, had previously given evidence in a criminal trial where Mr X was acquitted. However, at a later date, in 2006 and 2008, the District Judge in a family proceedings hearing found that Ms A was a ‘credible’ and ‘believable’ witness with respect to all of the allegations made by her. The GSCC’s Conduct Committee, which also tests evidence against the civil standard, found the allegation proven.

The Committee considered transcripts of Ms A’s video evidence and noted that she did not ‘exaggerate’ the abuse even when given the opportunity to do so.

The Committee found misconduct against Mr X for abusing his position of trust in ‘sexually abusing a child in his family.’ They ruled that Mr X’s behaviour represents a clear breach of the Codes of Practice and decided to remove him from the register, which means he can no longer practise as a social worker.

Mr X who was present at the hearing denied the allegation and did not put forward any mitigation other than stating that he had no intention to work as a social worker in the future.

Rosie Varley, Chair of the GSCC, said: “Social workers must be trustworthy and of good character as they work closely with vulnerable people. The GSCC exists to ensure public protection and to promote high standards among social workers and will take action against those who do not meet the standards laid down in the Codes of Practice. Those social workers are very much in the minority – there are many thousands of social workers who meet our standards and work to support vulnerable people on a daily basis.”

Mr X was removed from the register with immediate effect. He has the right of appeal to the Health, Education and Social Chamber of the First-tier Tribunal.