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Journal article

A practice framework to support the Care Act 2014

Author:
STANLEY Tony
Journal article citation:
Journal of Adult Protection, 18(1), 2016, pp.53-64.
Publisher:
Emerald

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to discuss how the signs of safety and wellbeing practice framework offers a practical and logical reinforcement for the Making Safeguarding Personal programme within the practice context of the Care Act. The new practice framework orientates safeguarding practice to be person led and person centred while reinforcing an outcomes focus. Design/methodology/approach: The principal social worker co-led the design and pilot programme where the new practice framework was developed and trialled. Findings: A practice framework that houses the policy and practice updates needed to deliver the Care Act and Making Safeguarding Personal agenda is logical and necessary for the practitioners. An outcomes focus is encouraged because safeguarding practice is goal orientated and outcome focused. Practical implications: A debate about how practice frameworks can help achieve the Making Safeguarding Personal approach and deliver on the Care Act principles is offered. This is a new and important debate for adult social care; a debate well-established across children’s services. (Edited publisher abstract)

Journal article

Learning about practice from practice: a peer-based methodology

Author:
STANLEY Tony
Journal article citation:
Child Care in Practice, 20(2), 2014, pp.220-231.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis

A recommendation from the Social Work Task Force was that all employers of social workers should conduct a regular “health check” of the social work profession to learn from practice as part of a continuous cycle of improvement. This article documents how the London Borough of Tower Hamlets has gone about this. The author describes the methodological and practical pathway Tower Hamlets followed so that others can see what they did and why they did it. The social work office set out a plan of methodological action in order that they achieved the learning from practice to inform our health check, and it is the planning work that is engaged with in this article. They have found that by involving and engaging our staff in the health check work, they have gained more than they had set out to find. An organisational commitment to act on what social workers have told us about practice is offering the senior management team new ideas about the best ways of delivering professional and reflective support mechanisms for staff. Learning from practice is now one of the core functions for the new Principal Social Worker. (Edited publisher abstract)

Journal article

'Child in Need' plans: tools for family empowerment

Author:
STANLEY Tony
Journal article citation:
Practice: Social Work in Action, 22(3), June 2010, pp.155-165.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis

In this article, the author looks at ways of conceptualising social work, discussing how particular 'things' in practice, such as social work plans, can operate as active partners in social work. Actor Network Theory is presented as a method where non-human 'things' can be conceptualised as partners in the work. The paper illustrates this method in action in one local authority setting through a brief anonymised practice illustration of a 'Child in Need' plan as a working partner for work with a family. The author argues that for empowerment to be successful, social work must draw on its non-human partners such as 'Child in Need' plans.

Journal article

Safeguarding 'Children in Need': an initial evaluation of a child in need reviewing service

Author:
STANLEY Tony
Journal article citation:
Practice: Social Work in Action, 21(2), June 2009, pp.107-118.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis

This article explores the recent establishment, practice delivery and initial evaluation of a Child in Need (CIN) reviewing service. The practice of reviewing is explored in detail. In particular, the role of genograms and ecomaps as tools to enhance preparation, participation and planning at CIN review meetings is discussed. There are always challenges and opportunities to the introduction of any service initiative and these are discussed; arresting case drift is one of them. The CIN reviewing service offers families and children a participatory social work model where their voices, views and wishes can be located in the social work plans that are essentially about them: plans where safeguarding children remain the focus.

Journal article Full text available online for free

Assisting risk assessment now

Author:
STANLEY Tony
Journal article citation:
Social Work Now: the Practice Journal of Child, Youth and Family, 35, December 2006, pp.8-12.
Publisher:
Child, Youth and Family (Department of Child, Youth and Family Services, Te Tari Awhina I te Tamaiti, te Rangatahi, tae atu ki te Whanau)

Risk assessment and its management are key components of child protection social work. The author discusses the Risk Estimation System in practice with social workers in New Zealand. The system was found to assist assessment work in four ways: in the formulation of assessment questions, by highlighting assessment gaps, helping family participation, and drawing on literature and research.

Journal article Full text available online for free

Reflecting on decision-making: practice gains

Author:
STANLEY Tony
Journal article citation:
Social Work Now: the Practice Journal of Child, Youth and Family, 22, August 2002, pp.14-19.
Publisher:
Child, Youth and Family (Department of Child, Youth and Family Services, Te Tari Awhina I te Tamaiti, te Rangatahi, tae atu ki te Whanau)

Reviews systems of decision-making by social workers. Those in child protection routinely make decisions that can have a major impact on children and families, and in New Zealand there has been media criticism arising from tragic incidents. Discusses the national practice context and international literature and its significance for social work practice, Concludes that decision-making practices is an area that can assist in developing a reflective approach.

Journal article

Improving organisational culture – the practice gains

Authors:
STANLEY Tony, LINCOLN Helen
Journal article citation:
Practice: Social Work in Action, 28(3), 2016, pp.199-212.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis

Understanding how excellent practice is enabled is an important question for organisational and professional leaders to ask and work towards answering. But, what are the conditions needed for a great organisational culture? And, how can it be found? How can it be promoted and built on What works well? Social service organisations are complex — making the exercise of understanding organisational culture a complex task. It needs a research approach. The authors discuss their experiences and shared learning from undertaking social work health checks. They worked together on a shared research methodology because their service systems are similar in design. This offered them a unique way to explore the organisational culture of two local authorities. It is argued that a number of ‘conditions for success’ are needed so that great social work is at the heart of the organisation’s mission, delivery and learning. These conditions for success are supported by their health check findings. (Edited publisher abstract)

Journal article

Childhood radicalisation risk: an emerging practice issue

Authors:
STANLEY Tony, GURU Surinder
Journal article citation:
Practice: Social Work in Action, 27(5), 2015, pp.353-366.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis

Terrorism, radicalisation and risk are contested terms - converging around particular children and young people in England to construct an emergent category of abuse - ‘childhood radicalisation’. With little practice-based research to date in this issue and expected responses via the state, social work needs to step up and engage with the present terrorism debates. The authors argue against peremptorily defining this as a child protection issue. They call for more debate about the role of social work and policy influences because social work can find itself unwittingly posing a risk to the very families that it sets out to help. Moreover, social workers might find themselves pawns in an ideologically driven moral panic without the benefit of debate about how they can make a contribution to families, and to this emerging practice issue. This paper offers some suggestions to bolster the confidence and skills needed in approaching this new practice issue. Social workers are themselves at risk of becoming the guardians of radicalisation risk work. This needs resisting if social work is to offer something complementary to the policing and securitisation needs of an anxious politic and ever-hovering media, hungry for sensationalised risk stories. (Edited publisher abstract)

Book Full text available online for free

The role of the social worker in tackling violent extremism

Authors:
STANLEY Tony, et al
Publisher:
Association of Directors of Children's Services
Publication year:
2015
Pagination:
4

A guidance note providing information and advice for social workers who have to deal with service users who become involved in violent extremism. It highlights the contribution social work can make in this area due to the professions emphasis on social justice and rights-based approaches and expertise in working with vulnerable people and disaffected communities. The note provides a brief overview of the legal framework; provides three short case studies with accompanying reflective practice questions and discusses the importance of rigorous assessment and respectful intervention. It also briefly outlines how the following skills can help in tackling violent extremism: a social justice and human rights based approach, a community based approach and skills in multi-agency working. (Edited publisher abstract)

Journal article

‘Signs of safety’ practice at the health and children’s social care interface

Authors:
STANLEY Tony, MILLS Rob
Journal article citation:
Practice: Social Work in Action, 26(1), 2014, pp.23-36.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis

Good practice for safeguarding children by health and social care means having the individual confidence to take considered risks in practice and the institutional support that encourages it. Yet, this is not easy to achieve or widely promoted across health and social care organisations. The pressure to ‘get things right’ very much dominates health and social care and this perpetuates a risk aversive culture. Risk measurement regimes based on actuarial methods influences the ‘get things right’ emphasis, with a focus on certainty and knowing ‘for sure’, leaving socially determined or socially constructed notions of risk at the practice margins. In an everyday practical sense, this can mean families being subjected to professional definitions about risk and need, rather than them being part of a working relationship where risk definitions are worked out together.The authors argue that definitions of risk are best conceptually and practically mapped at the interface of health and social care practice, with families, to strengthen the case analysis and social work plans about what needs to happen next. The article shows how the ‘signs of safety’ approach adopted at Tower Hamlets to do just that. (Edited publisher abstract)

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