What does a social worker believe?

 
Social work has changed a lot but have social workers? The articles in the social work press reflect  the changing world of social work, new policies, new legislation, new guidance, new structures, new way of working, new technology, fewer resources, yet the on line comments by social workers reflect attitudes and beliefs that social workers from an era before social media, outsourcing (Virgin Care),call centres and the separation of adult and children's services would recognise. What social workers do may have changed but has what social workers believe changed?
 
From their on line comments this is what social workers believe 
 
Social workers believe they can make a difference.
Social workers believe that people can change
Social workers are optimists by nature but pessimists by experience 
Social workers believe in changing society one family at a time 
Social workers of a certain generation believe society is to blame but that some clients have self destructive tendencies.   
Social workers have a highly developed sense of right and wrong but agree the world isn't fair.
Social workers tend towards idealism but social work is very pragmatic.  
Social workers compare themselves to teachers and nurses but not housing officers or police officers.
Social workers distrust senior management suspecting hidden agendas and ulterior  motives.
Social workers believe local councillors tell the voters what they want to hear.
Social workers believe the media distorts stories, and uses them as scape goats for the failings of the system. 
Social workers believe that their local authority pays lip service to policies on harassment and bullying. 
Social workers believe health is calling the shots when it comes to integration and the health and social care agenda.
 
You might assume that social workers were becoming more cynical in the face of year on year budget cuts, rationing of services and privatisation but it would appear that while social workers are very cynical about management, politicians and the media they still believe they can make a difference, just not as much as they would like. In this respect social work has changed but social workers haven't.
 
Blair McPherson ex social worker and former director www.blairmcpherson.co.uk

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