Rabble wants to hear from you about your experiences of labour activation programmes!!

Following the release of the emotionally charged  film I Daniel Blake, that offers a chilling insight into the devastating human impact of labour activation programmes in the UK, Rabble are interested to hear from anyone about their personal experiences of labour activation programmes in Ireland, such as Gateway or Tús. 

 If you have personal experience of these schemes, or if you are working with someone who has been attending such a programme, Rabble would really like to hear from you  (see link below) .

 These schemes are of huge concern as they represent another change to the relationship between the state and it’s citizen’s in terms of providing welfare, and for citizen well-being. In a recent article in the Village magazine (http://villagemagazine.ie/index.php/2015/01/privatisation-kicks-in-quietly-and-unquestioned/) Mary Murphy, from NUIM, outlined key concerns about the way these schemes are being operated by private companies, as has been happening in the UK, where they have had devastating consequences for the most vulnerable in society. What is more worrying is that the privisation of welfare services through these schemes is happening silently and without debate. This is why it is of great importance to have your voice heard. Please see the link below.

Thanks from SWAN Steering Committee



Link for Rabble: http://www.rabble.ie/2016/10/24/are-you-daniel-blake/



A Guide to Radical Social Work

A Guide to Radical Social Work
by Vasilios Ioakimidis, Senior lecturer in social work, Durham University

“Inequality and poverty have a devastating effect on service users. Radical social work acknowledges this, and acts to achieve social change”.

Link to full article in the Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/social-care-network/2016/may/24/radical-social-work-quick-guide-change-poverty-inequality

JUST PUBLISHED: “Frontline” – the Social Work Action Network Ireland Bulletin

The Social Work Action Network Ireland bulletin, “Frontline” has just been published. Issue 2, June 2016, is attached. Please read it and share far and wide. We would also love to hear from you about the articles you read and would also love to receive any of your articles for future editions! Our email is: socialworkactionnetworkireland@gmail.com.

Thanks, from the Frontline Editorial Collective (FEC)

Frontline Issue 2 June 2016




Broken Bones are easier to fix than a Broken Heart

Last Quango in Halifax

The 5 Principles of the MCA are well applied by social workers because they chime with our professional values. The Principles instruct us to be anti-discriminatory, to enable self-determination and to respect non-conformity. And that’s just the first three Principles! Social workers everywhere apply them to gain consent before every bit of intervention.

That the Act has not been fully understood and implemented across health and social care was one of the findings of the Select Committee’s post-legislative scrutiny in 2014. It is now getting on for ten years since the Act came into force yet we are still talking about some professionals not understanding the Act or not being aware of it. This is not acceptable. We are talking about a person’s legal rights being ignored by public servants.

Sometimes it is not that a professional is unaware of MCA but that they want to achieve a particular outcome…

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Words matter: deconstructing ‘welfare dependency’ in the UK

With 2016 marking the 40th anniversary of the publication of Raymond Williams’ Keywords, an interrogation of the taken-for-grantedness of specific words, Paul Michael Garrett demonstrates how there is a pressing scholarly and political need to question and interrogate focal words and phrases within the neoliberal lexicon. Here, he looks at ‘welfare dependency’”.

Link to blog post: http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/%EF%BB%BFwords-matter-deconstructing-welfare-dependency-in-the-uk/


your voice mattersDear Friends,

Earlier today you will have received an email from us outlining the SWAN Ireland charter, ahead of #GE16. We are asking all those standing in the General Election on 26 February a to endorse the Charter by signing it and committing themselves to this urgent 12-point reform progamme.

You can do your bit to get candidates to endorse the charter by emailing them and sending them to the link to the online petition containing the charter and 12 point reform programme. The petition can be found here: https://www.change.org/p/irish-government-call-for-government-to-support-swan-s-urgent-12-point-reform-charter

You can find your local candidates details here: http://www.wheel.ie/election2016_Voters

Make sure to tell the candidates to include their party/affiliation when they sign and tell them why signing the charter is important to you.

SWAN supporters are also asked to support the principles in the Charter.

Thanks for doing your bit for social justice ahead of #GE16. Let us know how you get on and who signs the charter by tweeting us @SWAN_IRL or find us on Facebook at “Social Work Action Network Ireland”.

The SWAN Ireland National Steering Committee

ELECTION 2016: Social Work Network Demands Urgent ‘Reform Programme’

SWAN Ireland logo


All those standing in the General Election on 26 February are being asked to endorse the Charter by signing it and committing themselves to this urgent 12-point reform progamme. SWAN supporters are also asked to support the principles in the Charter.

  • All social work and probation vacancies will be filled;
  • The salaries of newly qualified social workers will be those negotiated with the trade unions. No moves will be made to cut the salaries of new workers, neither should social work students be used to ‘fill the gaps’, acting as temporary substitutes for unfilled, paid posts. Jobsbridge and similar ‘workfare’ schemes will be immediately terminated;
  • In order to prevent the continuing displacement and impoverishment of children and their families, the government will begin an immediate programme of building 40,000 social houses over its lifetime in government, as part of an overall strategy to deal with homelessness and the housing crisis.
  • Quality public sector home-care services will be drastically increased to enable more elderly people to remain at home, and adequate structures will be put in place to ensure the voices of older people are central to the provision of care packages.
  • The full implementation of ‘Vision for Change’ will occur with particular attention being given to the reform of manifestly inadequate addiction services, with specific emphasis on embedding interagency working with people present with multiple and complex needs;
  • A nationwide 24-hour social work service, staffed by a dedicated team of practitioners, will be established. This service will not be founded on social workers being compelled to fulfil a role in this service on a rota basis;
  • Travellers will be recognised as a ‘minority ethnic’ population within the state;
  • All prisoners will be guaranteed timely access to a social worker;
  • In line with the state’s human rights obligations, emergency measures will be put in place to address the conditions, amounting to institutionalised abuse, encountered by children and their families within the ‘direct provision’ system. Children will be safeguarded and protected and their rights, identified in the UN Convention, will be respected. The systemic exclusion of asylum seekers from daily life and civil society will cease.
  • The Habitual Resident Condition which is punitive and has prompted hardship and distress will be scrapped;
  • Immediate action will be taken to meaningfully address the global refugee crisis;
  • Ratification of the UN Declaration on the Rights for People with disabilities will occur.