Afterwards …

Ian Butler and Mark Drakeford

in Social work on trial

Published by Policy Press

Published in print April 2011 | ISBN: 9781847428684
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303565 | DOI:
Afterwards …

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If social work in the United Kingdom had been on trial during the Colwell Inquiry, the final verdict on the profession was to be delivered elsewhere and much later. This chapter looks at the immediate and medium-term consequences of the Maria Colwell Inquiry and examines the influence it had, ephemeral and lasting, on social work in particular and the welfare state more generally. It begins with the production of the Inquiry report itself, and its immediate reception in Whitehall, focusing on the struggle that went on inside government to craft a response to the recommendations made by the Inquiry team. It then turns to the micro-processes of government as it drew together a series of administrative and procedural reforms that Colwell implied and that did so much to shape the future of social work both organisationally and professionally. Finally, the chapter discusses the major legislative consequence of the Colwell case, the Children Act of 1975.

Keywords: Maria Colwell; social work; Colwell Inquiry; welfare state; United Kingdom; reforms; Children Act

Chapter.  13834 words. 

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