Social Work England

Part of Children and Social Work Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee am 2:45 pm ar 15 Rhagfyr 2016.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Emma Lewell-Buck Emma Lewell-Buck Shadow Minister (Education) (Children and Families) 2:45, 15 Rhagfyr 2016

Regulation clauses in part 2 of the Bill deal with the establishment of a new regulator for both children’s and adults’ social work across all specialisms. It will be called Social Work England. The Department for Education and the Department of Health, without any prior consultation or dialogue with the social work profession, propose to end regulation by the Health and Social Care Professionals Council and to replace it with an inevitably much more costly bespoke regulatory system.

In recent years there has been a lot of flux in relation to social work regulation. There was the General Social Care Council, the college and then the Health and Care Professionals Council, and now we will have Social Work England. I hope that the Minister will confirm that this ever-changing landscape is going to cease and that we will not be debating another regulator in another year or so, because all that this change does is create constant disruption in the profession.

I profess to being relieved to be speaking to this clause without having to battle against the Government on their initial proposal that the new regulator be established as an executive agency of the Department for Education. The fact that that was proposed at all is disgraceful. State-run regulation is something that none of us ever wants to see. Indeed, a survey by Unison in August found that around 90% of social workers thought the profession should be regulated by an independent body and not by Government. I congratulate the noble Lord Watson and Lord Warner for their tireless work on this section of the Bill in the other place. They were successful in getting a number of concessions on the regulator to make it independent from Government.