January 26, 2016

Violence Against Child Protection Social Workers Should not be Tolerated

Better training, supervision and support from organisations in those cases where parents are threatening, intimidating and violent will result in better and more successful interventions in child protection cases -  The conclusion of research conducted by Community Care and Child Abuse Prevention Research Australia into the negative impact of violence on workers personal lives.

The research surveyed 590 participants working with children and parents in the UK in 2011 and found that:

  • 61% reported having been threatened by hostile or intimidating parents in the previous six months
  • 18% had been physically assaulted, including one participant who was permanently injured from a murder attempt
  • 10% had been held captive in client’s homes
  • 8% of participants had received death threats
  • 4% had been threatened with firearms or knives
  • 1% had been threatened with bombs

In addition to entering hostile environments, child protection workers are often alone, bringing increased risks of working alone.