Social Workers Registration Legislation Bill – First Reading  – Video 2

Social Workers Registration Legislation Bill – First Reading – Video 2

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members the Christian is that the motion be agreed to Carmel super Lonnie Thank You mr. speaker I’ll just start by saying of course we’ll be supporting this to first reading mr. speaker and I have to say it has been a long time coming beckon October 2015 the bill that I had drawn out of the members ballot to make social worker registration was debated in the house and it was unfortunate that at that time we had the support of some of the parties but not all so we didn’t have the support of act we didn’t have the support of Peter diamond United Future and we didn’t have the support of national it was equally as disappointing at the time that I had met with every political party to discuss that member’s bill and the importance of mandatory social worker registration and even the Minister herself at the time couldn’t say there was anything in the bill that I had drafted that she disagreed with she just said it was about timing well timing mr. speaker let’s talk about timing because actually when I looked back even further when Labor was in government near the end of its term in 2008 we were on our way to actually making social worker registration industry and the Minister herself was on record and the Hansard pushing for this to happen and pushing very hard in fact for this to happen a great advocate for social worker registration and yet here we are nine years and to that national governments term and it’s taken them this long to get this to first reading and I have to say there was no need for an inquiry there was no need for the Social Services Select Committee to undertake an inquiry we could have done the same work if the government had just supported my members bill to Select Committee that we ended up doing what a year later and we would have been ahead of the game mr. speaker and it’s not just about who wins or does someone win with regards to getting a bill up and whose name was on it who led it it’s about the fact that this is actually a really important and urgent issue and we have we’ve had to the the recommendations come from the different advisory groups to say that actually it’s imperative that we have a qualified and registered workforce working with our most vulnerable children and families mr. speaker so it shouldn’t have been been delayed and it didn’t need to be delayed at all mr. speaker the bill does much of what we had proposed in the member’s bill that I had in the ballot that was drawn that was voted against by national essentially it makes it so that a person may only call themselves a social worker whether through names titles descriptions abbreviations etc if they are a registered social worker and hold a current practising certificate and that’s so important because actually a three years ago a survey was undertaken and a general public were under they were assumed that anyone who called themselves a social worker will actually have the qualifications and was registered and regulated by a body of some sort so they were under the assumption that that was already the case but in fact it wasn’t the case and we’ve had multiple incidents in the media where people who had been employed as social workers or called themselves social workers where they had been done in the courts for criminal activity and they had been trusted in positions as a social worker a mr. speaker when they shouldn’t have had that title because it was misleading the public assumes that people who have that title had the qualifications and are regulated in some way or another and that hasn’t been the case so we support the fact that that title will be protected once we get through this process there have been concerns raised I’ve had to the LT Royal New Zealand Association of Social Workers get in contact with me about this bill they’re happy that it’s finally at this point and that we are moving towards making social worker registration mandatory the concern raised is that social workers or people with a social worker qualification could actually be employed in a role that is entitled social worker like probation officer family advocates youth worker and that there will be no expectation that those people be registered as social workers because they’re not practicing formally under the title of social worker and we’ve had that discussion I’ve had that discussion with them let’s say a point I’m sure that will be natural doubt and discussed even further and will be evident and the submissions that are received by Parliament when it gets to Select Committee at this point in time I have said to the LT or New Zealand Association of Social Workers that I’m at this point in time on the site of just protecting the title of social worker and if we were going to go down the track of actually regulating those other positions then that’s a completely different piece of work I think to what we’re discussing here in the house today and also I think you know knowing I’ve been a teacher a qualified teacher you can be a qualified teacher who might go on to other positions outside of the the state’s cooling sector where you may choose her or whatever else but there’s no expectation in those situations that you’ll maintain your registration and I think that’s the kind of immediate comparison that I think of but it’s still up for discussion and as I said to UM the LTR or New Zealand Association of Social Workers person who I’ve been speaking to this is something that we can discuss further at select committee they can present us with the evidence there and we can go through the process with regards to that Mr Speaker I don’t really have much to say on this bill because we are going to be supporting it I think I’ve made the key points it’s a long time coming we could have done it ages ago the government didn’t need to hold this up and mr. speaker I’m looking forward to hopefully being part of the next parliament where we get to debate this further and where we can actually realise a mandatory social worker registration thank you Joe Hayes before I

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