Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Social worker employed by Serco has been struck off register

"A team manager, working in an outsourced children’s services department, has been struck off the social work register for failing to adequately supervise his team and act on safeguarding concerns."

"The manager of the children with disabilities team had been employed by private provider Serco at the time of the allegations in 2012 but was referred by Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council after the team was transferred back into council control following a poor Ofsted inspection."

"The social worker was initially suspended for 12 months in September 2014 on grounds of misconduct for not providing appropriate advice to inexperienced team members who had noted, for example, bitemarks and other injuries. He had also closed cases which had outstanding assessment referrals..."

"At the first hearing, the panel noted that Walsall’s children’s services were in "organisational disarray" at the time of the conduct referral. The children with disabilities team had been transferred back to control of the council the previous month. It had been outsourced since 2005, first to Action for Children and, from 2008, to Serco."

"The manager was employed by Serco at the time of the allegations. There was a large backlog of cases when Serco took over from Action for Children, giving rise to a "defensive" culture, the panel found. There were also inadequate policies within Serco. For example, carers’ self-assessment referrals could be closed if no response was received to a letter within two weeks."

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