21 Apr 2018

PSA critical of 'short-sighted' select committee report

3:03 pm on 21 April 2018

A union covering social workers is disapponted by what it sees as a missed opportunity to standardise the profession.

Glenn Barclay, General Secretary, PSA

PSA national secretary Glenn Barclay. Photo: RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

The Social Services Select Committee has reported back on the Social Work Registration Bill.

It would only require people to be registered if they had 'social work' or 'social worker' in their job titles.

PSA national secretary Glenn Barclay said that was short-sighted and risky.

"Communities could be exposed to people who aren't properly qualified... properly trained... and don't meet proper professional standards," he said.

Mr Barclay said the union disagreed that the scope of practice for social workers was difficult to define.

He said other health services, such as psychologists, had clear scopes of practice.

Mr Barclay has written to Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni asking for an urgent meeting to discuss members' concerns.