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Why are Social Workers so vilified? - Page 3 - Carers UK Forum

Why are Social Workers so vilified?

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
132 posts
Mick, did you never work in the Children's social services environment?
Have you never heard of the UN convention on the rights of the child?
Just shining the light to explain why social workers are so vilified.

Colin_1705 wrote:Mick, did you never work in the Children's social services environment?
Have you never heard of the UN convention on the rights of the child?
Indeed I did for 17 years and of course I know about UNC; what's your point?
charm_1965 wrote:Just shining the light to explain why social workers are so vilified.
https://50shadesofcaregiver.wordpress.c ... the-light/
Not quite so subtle advert for your own blog.
jenny lucas wrote:Do social workers ever ask their clients (ie, carees) if they realise how much of a 'burden' they are to their carers? But I do see that SWs can all too often be caught being 'piggy in the middle'....
They should not allow themselves to be put in that position but I can see how they may be seen to be by some others.
I say that because the SW should always be mindful of who, exactly, is their client.
Sometimes they should remind other parties of that but then of course they'll be shafted because of others unrealistic and uninformed expectations.
Where there is conflict between the carers needs and the carees needs, if the social worker is focussed entirely on the caree then someone else should be appointed to focus entirely on the needs of the carer. A good social worker should be able to appreciate both points of view and find a mutually acceptable solution.
I once had 5 carees all entitled to highest DLA. My husband and I were working desperately hard until 1am to keep everything going, but there was no one thinking about our needs dut to the tunnel vision of SSD and the NHS. My husband died shortly after his father. I shall always believe that the stress of our situation was a major factor. He didn't smoke, drink, went for walks most evenings and ate organic veg he grew himself.
Mick_1707 wrote:
charm_1965 wrote:Just shining the light to explain why social workers are so vilified.
https://50shadesofcaregiver.wordpress.c ... the-light/
Not quite so subtle advert for your own blog.
Oh well, mick can't please all of the people all of the time with what I write and not really bothered.
Mick - two points. If your reply to me is that social workers shouldn't ask their clients (the carees) if they realise how much their (the client's) actions/behaviours etc is burdening their family carers, then I fail to see why the SW should not put that to them! Why not? SOMEONE has to tell carees that! And who better than the 'official' social worker.

Second point - I say this 'gently', but as I've pointed out previously elswhere, by and large we are all pretty much 'supportive and sympathetic' to each other as forum members here.....including about their blogs.

I'm sure we all make due allowance collectively for the stress each of us is under, to varying degrees, but nevertheless, this forum has a reputation for 'niceness' and it would be good - some might say essential - to keep it that way.

Yes, we all bring 'baggage' here, but we try to make sure there is nothing 'armed and dangerous to others' in it when it comes to exchanging with other forum members.

So, let's keep everything 'nice and friendly' shall we? God knows there are enough forums that descend into really 'nasty' attacks on each other, and I've been on some of them and have the scars to prove it! it's a horrible, horrible experience, to feel 'got at' by other members - and that is why I say this very 'gently' in response to your response to Charm.

Now, the mods may well intervene at this point, and this post itself may disappear, but there it is.

Let's just all remember we are ALL under stress on this forum, and being 'very nice' to each helps to take a little of that stress out of things.

Yes, we may rage at governments/state orgnisations/fate etc etc - but not each other.

OK, 'message over'.

Kind regards to you in what I know from your own thread is a VERY difficult and stressful and emotionally painful situation.

Let's just all remember we are on the same side?? However that 'side' is expressed and experienced!

Cheers, Jenny
I've not commented on the original subject of the thread, simply because I've no personal experience of Social Workers. (Maybe it's telling that the only conversation I've had with one was in relation to my mother, who was not well either mentally or physically - we are talking decades ago! - and there were a lot of practical difficulties associated with transport, possible respite, stress on my father, etc etc, Her GP was very sympathetic, and thanks to him I can remember taking a phone call from a very nice lady from our county town, who asked me about what problems were being created because of my mother, and it was all very nice and sympathathetic and then when I asked who she was she said she was a social worker. I can remember, very vividly ,being totally taken aback. To me, at that age, in my twenties, and in that time period, the seventies, social workers were for the working class.....)

So, in the context that my only knowledge is what I read in the press, it seems 'clear' from that that social workers are between a rock and a hard place, and that there is a significant and perhaps irreconcilable difference between the 'foot soldier' social workers at the coal face, and their senior management.

The former seem to be given impossibly large case loads, leaving utterly inadequate time to deal with each one, in a set up where sufficient funds to apply necessary support are simply not there.

They have to operate in a regime that has very adamantine 'top down principles' whether it is 'leave children with their birth mothers' (irrespective of whether those mothers are drug addicts, living with psychopathic step-fathers, etc etc) or 'children must only be adopted by parents of the same ethnic colour' etc etc etc. The SW foot soldiers can't change the rules - only apply them. And then get hauled through the hot coals of the outraged Daily Mail for their pains.

I see the real 'villains of the piece' (ie, from reading the press) as the top management. As in the NHS, the government policy is to select 'stoolies' to run tax-payer funded services at least cost, and the 'stoolies' (Chief Executives) are bribed to do so by the government paying them humungous salaries (often more than the Prime Minister) simply to one task and one task only - reduce spending and crush their own workforce into the ground with overwork and undersupport.

Any Chief Executive, whether in SS or the NHS, who is a REAL manager would stand up to the government and simply shout, all day and all night 'We CANNOT serve the public without more money!'. They would be on the side of their own foot soldiers (from social workers crushed by excessive case loads to nurses crushed by excessive shifts, etc) standing up to the government.

But no, the CE's sell out their own staff down the line, over and over again. For the sake of their salaries.

OK, so that's my take 'roughly' - what I perceive from reading the press (a mix of left and right wing.)

I have no idea if it's true, because so far I've never needed to be on the receiving end of social workers (though I've been on the receiving end of 'queuing in the underfunded NHS'......)
As the mother of a brain damaged child, my life has been hugely affected by social workers. With no one in the family able to care for my son, the only respite available was through Social Services. No respite meant my health went downhill. I was offered a wonderful job leading all the special needs courses at the local college, just up my street, really well paid, but I couldn't accept the job because there was no respite. 5 years studying for an honours degree went largely unused as a result. My parents and my in laws lived nearby, as they became old and ill, we were left to deal with them with no support. Any elderly person with relatives nearby is at the bottom of the queue. Their social workers never once asked us if we were in a position to take on this care. Mum's social worker wrote on her Needs Assessment that I'd turned down a Carers Assessment, they'd never asked me!!!
I had life saving surgery, large new scar across my abdomen. No one asked if I'd be OK to have my son home for Christmas, did I need extra help? Instead, they tried to bully me into looking after my mum as well over Christmas as well. It turned out mum had a broken leg. Social workers tried to bully me again when she was discharged from hospital months later. Couldn't understand that I couldn't do her shopping, because I couldn't carry heavy weights. I could go on and on.
After 38 years, I look back and realise how different my life could have been with better social workers. The policies are clear, we are supposed to be treated as equals, respected etc. etc. but it never happens.
132 posts