Adult social workers back a ‘Munro-style’ review

Nearly three quarters of social workers based in adult services have suffered emotional or mental health problems because of the stresses of the job, a survey by BASW – College of Social Work has found.

The snapshot online poll of 100 social workers across England revealed that staff shortages – reported by a third of respondents to be at 30% in their service – is leaving them unable to protect vulnerable people.

More than half, 52%, reported that their team was carrying vacancies and 85% said work had been transferred to unqualified workers in the last two years.

England professional officer Joe Godden said BASW/CoSW was “very concerned” by the survey findings. “Social workers investigate many horrendous cases of adults being abused, or exploited and do manage to provide protection for the most vulnerable people in our society,” he said.

“Protecting, or safeguarding adults from abuse is as complicated as protecting vulnerable children. Great skills and expertise are needed, as well as a detailed knowledge of the law.”

Of those who took part in the survey, 92% said they would support a Munro-style review of adult social work.