A look back at some key events that have shaped social work in the past 60 years or so. Send us your suggestions for more inclusions by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Created by ComcareAndy on 29/05/2012
Last updated: 30/05/12 at 11:09
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Earlier this year the BBC screened Protecting our Children - a three part documentary on child protection work. Here, Owen Davies from the College of Social Work discusses the programme's positive impact on social work.
You can check out full reaction to Protecting our Children at the link below.
Owen Davies, policy and public affairs advisor at the College of Social Work, explains why he thinks social work is in the process of 'renewing itself' and why he is encouraged by the 'energy and passion' of the profession.
In summer 2011, the government published their formal response to Eileen Munro’s review of child protection, commissioned the previous year.
Following the ministerial statement, Munro told Community Care: “I am very pleased to get such a positive response from the government.
This is the start of a long process of shifting from a compliance to a learning culture and the government response rightly emphasises that this needs to be a matter of the government working in partnership with the sector to make such fundamental changes.”
In this video Camilla Pemberton, Community Care's Children's Services Editor, gives an overview on current progress on Munro's recommendations.
Read our full special report on the Munro recommendations by clicking on the link below.
Owen Davies, policy and public affairs advisor at The College of Social Work, reflects on the impact of the Baby P case on the profession.
To read more about the case click the link below.
The introduction of a social work degree in 2003, marked a significant shake-up of social work education. Here, Ian Butler, Professor of Social Work at the University of Bath and a qualified social worker reflects on the profession moving from a diploma to a degree programme: “I think that as a profession, particularly the academic communities, one of our finest hours was that, when we made the transition from the diploma into the social work degree programme, we held on to a great number of things that have proved to be of enormous lasting value.” “We held on to a generic training. We held on to the notion that social work is both an art and a science so we achieved a very good balance between a practice/field-based curriculum and a classroom-based curriculum. "We also did a great deal to enhance the status of the profession through making it clear that this was a degree standard profession.”
One of the most high profile child protection cases was the death of Victoria Climbie in February 2000.
"She died with 128 separate injuries on her body after months of abuse at the hands of her grant aunt Marie Therese Kouao and her boyfriend Carl Manning."
"Despite coming into contact with health, police and social services on several occasions and twice taken to hospital the abuse was not discovered until her death."
"In the aftermath of her death and the court case convicting Kouao and Manning of murder, Lord Laming was instructed to undertake an iquiry into the circumstances leading up to Climbie's death and make recommendations on how the system should change."
"As a result of this report the government published a green paper entitled "Every Child Matters" and consequently passed the Children Act 2004."
From Community Care expert guide on child protection (link below).
The 1990 NHS and Community Care Act placed duty on councils to assess people who appear to be in need of community care services, a role largely undertaken by social workers.
Image: John Curtis/Rex Features
Many will remember 1987 as the year the great storm hit the south of England.
In Cleveland, it will go down in history as the year that child protection professionals were battered by a storm of quite another nature.
Over the course of a few months, two paediatricians diagnosed sexual abuse in 121 children from 57 families in the area. Most of the children were removed from their homes under place of safety orders.
In this short video, social work lecturer John Pierson remembers the scandal, the inquiry that followed it, and how it triggered long overdue reforms to child protection.
For more read Natalie Valios's Community Care article by clicking on the link below.
The 1983 Mental Health Act replaced the mental welfare officer role by the approved social worker role, a social worker specially trained in mental health, who would recommend admissions to hospital.
For more info on the Act, and how it compares with the Mental Health Act 2007, check out the link below.
The August 16th 1978 issue of Community Care opened with a leader titled 'Social workers should not strike.' The article was prompted by the decision from a series of social work teams affiliated with the NALGO trade union to take industrial action in protest against proposed pay deals. In this short film social work lecturer John Pierson, who went on strike as a social worker in Cleveland, looks back at the strikes.
The tragic death of seven year old Maria Colwell after she was beaten to death by her stepfather, prompted the first media backlash against social work and had a profound effect on the profession.
Here Owen Davies, policy and public affairs advisor at The College of Social Work, looks back at the case and it's impact on social work as a whole.
For more information on the case click the link below.
It was a remarkable year even by the standards of the decade.
Anti-Vietnam war demonstrations erupted into riot in Grosvenor Square, the assassination of Martin Luther King led to violence in more than 100 US cities, and Enoch Powell was sacked from the shadow cabinet after his infamous "rivers of blood" speech.
The year was 1968 and it was in this febrile social and political atmosphere that Frederic Seebohm published the report that brought social services departments into being and decided the fate of social work.
(From article by Mark Ivory in Community Care, 2005, read the full piece by clicking on the link below)
"The Kilbrandon Report 1963 applied to Scotland only but provided Britain with a model of youth justice that was not taken up south of the border." "Yet it stood as a permanent reminder of the path not taken in English youth justice – reparative, community- and family-based, proportional." "It showed how a nation, even while it maintained a ridiculously low age of criminal responsibility, could nevertheless devise youth justice institutions interested in the needs of the young person. Many years later youth offending panels in England played partial catch-up." John Pierson, social work lecturer at Staffordshire University.
The exact dates differ depending on sources, but up until as recently as the 1970s children were deported by the British government to Commonwealth countries including Australia, often without their parents being told.
In 1986 Margaret Humphreys, a former social worker from Nottingham, uncovered the organised deportation of more than 100,000 children in care.
The story was dramatised in the film Oranges and Sunshine. In this video the film's director talks about Humphrey's role in uncovering the scandal.
For more information visit the link below.
This Act created the role of mental welfare officer to decide on the appropriateness of admitting people with mental disorders to hospital compulsorily.
Social worker and academic John Pierson describes the impact of the 1948 Children Act on the profession. To read more on the legislation click the link below.