Journal Article

Voices From the Front Line: State Social Workers and New Labour

Chris Jones

in The British Journal of Social Work

Published on behalf of British Association of Social Workers

Volume 31, issue 4, pages 547-562
Published in print August 2001 | ISSN: 0045-3102
Published online August 2001 | e-ISSN: 1468-263X | DOI:
Voices From the Front Line: State Social Workers and New Labour

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The article explores the condition of state social work in England today. It is based on interviews with experienced social workers employed by local authority social services departments across the north of England. These front line state social workers provide a penetrating insight into the diverse ways in which their work has been transformed and degraded and the manner in which the needs of clients have been largely ignored. From their perspective, the election of a Labour government in 1997 proved to be a massive disappointment and many social workers reported that it has further undermined state social work practice, workers and clients. The paper seeks to offer an explanation by noting the neo‐liberalism of Labour's social policy and the dire consequences which flow from New Labour's fixation with waged work as the principal solution to social exclusion and poverty. Above all, it seeks to provide an opportunity for the views of front‐line state social workers to be heard.

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Social Work

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