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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 2008): Social care - UK


J. Phillips

Cambridge: Polity, 2007

Care is a diverse and evolving concept. It is taken as a natural part of life yet it is shaped by philosophical, ideological, political and economic arguments concerning its definition and purpose as well as how, where and to whom it is provided and funded. This book provides an introduction to the concept of care, mapping out and unravelling the complex debates that surround its theory and practice. Key aspects of care, such as boundaries, cultural and geographical spheres of care, the ethics of care and citizenship, are explored in full. The book also aims to deepen understanding of professional experiences, assumptions and values by examining practice and decision-making. Appropriate practice scenarios appear throughout to promote reflection on professional issues including the risks associated with care, care management, partnership working, ecological and empowerment approaches. The book concludes with a framework for rethinking care, located within the challenges of technological advances and globalisation.

Is prevention out of reach?

D. Callaghan

Community Care, Jan. 31st 2008, p. 28-29

The government is promoting a preventative approach to social care provision to allow for earlier, targeted interventions. However, the issue of the provision of preventative services is now being over-shadowed by disputes about eligibility criteria for services amid serious funding shortfalls. Many councils are raising eligibility criteria in the face of funding constraints.

Make your case

A. Fox

Community Care, Feb. 7th 2008, p. 14-15

The author explains how small local social care organisations can influence policy by: 1) lobbying national politicians; 2) responding to consultations; 3) contributing to the development of guidance; 4) commissioning academic evaluations of service innovations to produce evidence that they work; and 5) gaining media exposure.

More than just an error

G. Hopkins

Community Care, Feb. 14th 2008, p. 18-19

Reports the case of Jake Pierce, now 31, who sued Doncaster Council alleging that it had failed to take competent steps to protect him from parental abuse during his childhood. He had been taken into local authority care in Summer 1976 but returned to his abusive family in 1977. In the absence of proper records, the court found in Pierce's favour and awarded him 25,000 damages against the council. This article considers the implications of the verdict for social services departments.

A Review of free personal and nursing care

Audit Scotland

Edinburgh: 2008

Report warns that Scotland's flagship policy of free personal care for the over 65s needs to be better funded and managed if it is to be sustainable. It estimates a funding shortfall of 63m in 2005/06 and concludes that the scheme was never properly costed.

Sexuality and social work

J. Bywater and R. Jones

Exeter: Learning Matters, 2007

Sexuality remains a neglected and largely taboo area within practice, but it can be a demanding aspect of social work. Social workers may be familiar with the importance of issues such as racism and ethnicity, but sexuality is also a very significant part of people's lives, closest relationships and sense of identity. The book introduces the topic, using a combination of perspectives to consider sexual diversity and examining related issues across the life-course, including sexual orientation, disability, HIV, sexual abuse, mental health and sexual exploitation. It also includes recent legislation which has significant implications for social work practice.

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