Social work is a human rights discipline, IFSW president speaks up for the profession
Ruth Stark, the new president of the International Federation of Social Workers, has big plans for a global social work community.
“Social work is a human rights discipline. It’s not just an element of it- it is the core principle.” That is the view of Ruth Stark, the newly appointed president of the International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW) and former head of the Scottish Association of Social Workers.
Social work isn’t always viewed this way though. It is perhaps more often seen as a localised effort to deal with a community’s every day strains and strife than a grand human rights endeavour. But Stark, who still works as a frontline practitioner, feels strongly that social workers need to be able to identify with a global profession in the same way lawyers or health professionals do. They need to understand their work as an important social justice effort rather than having what she calls an “administrative identity”.
The IFSW is an organisation that brings together the representative bodies in social work from 116 countries across the globe and takes the issues from the frontline of social work to the policy makers. With non-governmental organisation (NGO) status in the United Nations, they respond to consultations and work to influence policy.
Stark’s selection as president means the head of the organisation that serves as voice for social work on the global stage is UK-based. But what does being part of a global community mean for social work here?
“Social work is practiced in all sorts of different ways,” Stark explains. “What the IFSW does is not just about representing different countries but about representing different kinds of social work and sharing that knowledge and information.”
Full story courtesy of Community Care
Social workers in adult services carry out work with adults from a range of backgrounds, many of whom are extremely vulnerable, requiring a sensitive, and supportive approach. Adult social workers provide support and assistance to maintain and promote the independence and well-being of adults. Treating adults with dignity and respect is a key core social [...]
Left wing loony, interfering, judgemental, cardigan wearing child snatchers. This is how all too often social workers are depicted. Slammed in the press when they ‘remove’ children from families for placing a vulnerable child in care yet made out to be a scapegoat when a vulnerable child is let down by the system.
Unfortunately, the [...]
Social work had to face a complete pendulum swing in social work practice during the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns.
Prior to COVID, online assessments or meetings were a complete rarity which had to be adequately justified. Yet overnight, as COVID-19 forced England into lockdown in March 2020, social workers still had vulnerable children and families [...]