The High Court has granted SWE a further 12 months to complete its investigation in Social Work England v Golding.

The social worker in this case is subject to regulatory concerning allegations about failing to follow management instructions in relation to casework; failing to properly manage a caseload as to the up-to-date records and the completion of accurate and timely assessments and interventions; and an allegation of having (dishonestly – it is alleged) advised a manager that a placement review had been completed when it had not.

Mr Justice Fordham noted the mental health and financial impact of the continued Interim Conditions of Practice Order on the defendant and the fact that they have engaged throughout the investigation process, but ultimately ruled that:

The prejudice to Ms Golding – who has acted properly and constructively in raising it and her other points – is decisively outweighed by public protection and public confidence imperatives, and by the public interest in SWE being able to progress the underlying proceedings appropriately, with such expedition as is assessed to be reasonable and achievable, in light of the practical and resource constraints and SWE’s caseload as a whole. I am satisfied that there is sufficient certainty. I am satisfied that it is necessary and proportionate, for the protection of the public including public confidence, that the extension be granted and that its duration should be the 12 months sought to 9 May 2024.”

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