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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

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Cuts putting the vulnerable at risk

This news post is over 1 year old

New research produced by UNISON shows the pressure social work services across Scotland are under

Social work services in Scotland are at breaking point, a union has warned.

UNISON has published a new report which it says shows cuts to public services in Scotland have left vulnerable people at risk.

Freedom of Information requests to local authorities and a Scotland-wide survey of UNISON members working in social work teams reveal a dedicated workforce working hard to support the public but who are under enormous pressure.

The Save from Harm report also revealed that violence at work is a major issue among staff with two thirds having experienced physical or verbal abuse at work. Only one third of those who had experienced abuse knew of a risk assessment following that abuse.

The union said the study lays bare the impact of major budget cuts which have left social work teams severely underfunded and services that have now reached breaking point.

Joe Lynch, UNISON regional organiser, said: “This is a damning report which shows our social work services have reached breaking point. Our dedicated staff are going above and beyond to support the public but they are under enormous pressure with heavier workloads and too few staff.

“They feel exhausted, undervalued and suffer violence regularly. Social work teams are severely underfunded and we are facing a social work crisis. The dedicated people working in our social work teams deserve better and so do the people who rely upon them.”



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