Photo: JKP author Willem Blok

The role of Social Work in Society, from an international perspective – An Interview with Willem Blok

“In my opinion, social workers, social services and social institutions are characteristics of a civilized society in which human rights, social justice and democracy are conceived of as vital values and standards. Social work contributes to the quality of life of all citizens, social cohesion and solidarity, while on the other hand supporting the established order and relations in society. In academic circles this is sometimes described as the ‘double function’ of social work. This does not have to be a dilemma for social workers, as long as the established order is a democratic one, with freedom of speech and organization, an independent judicial system, separation of political and judicial powers, and respect for human rights.”

Understanding and maintaining professional boundaries in social care work – An interview with Frank Cooper

“Professional boundaries are vital in social care work because we are working on a deep level with vulnerable people. This means that we have a responsibility to them to do things to the best of our ability and to ensure that our help and support does not damage or disenfranchise them. Working with difficult issues can also be very stressful and draining work, and professional boundaries help us to manage ourselves and our emotions.”

Safeguarding Refugee, Asylum Seeking and Trafficked Children in the UK – An Interview with Emma Kelly and Farhat Bokhari

“Given the range of experiences that separated children are likely to have had before they arrive in the UK, it seems extraordinary that many will receive a lesser service from statutory services than citizen children. But, as our book shows, those working with separated children have long noted institutional discrimination. Much of this stems from the tensions that exist between immigration control and child welfare and safeguarding. Despite clear domestic policy and procedures, as well as international obligations, many separated children continue to find that their status as subject to immigration control takes precedence over their needs and rights as children.”

Interview: Lynn Davis on her new book, A Practical Guide to Fostering Law

“Foster carers play an absolutely crucial role in the child care system. The vast majority of looked after children live in foster care. Carers are there at the sharp end, dealing 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with all of the consequences of abuse, neglect or whatever family difficulties have led children to be looked after. Yet in spite of this, in my view foster carers are underpaid and often overlooked and under-appreciated.”