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SSSC Celebrates 100,000 Registrants

14th September 2017

The Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) Register of Social Service Workers has reached a total of 100,000 people (13 September 2017). This milestone means that approximately half the social service workforce which currently has around 200,000 workers is now registered and many more will join them when we open the Register to the 50,000 workers in care at home and housing support services on 2 October 2017.

The SSSC Register opened on 1 April 2003 after many years of campaigning for a body that would raise the status of thousands of committed social service workers and put them on an equal footing with other regulated professionals. Since then, social workers, social work students and workers in adult care, day care of children and residential childcare have joined the registered social service workforce.

Minister for Childcare and Early Years Mark McDonald said: ‘Our ambition is for Scotland's citizens to have access to the best social services with highly skilled, trusted and valued people providing the care and support that means we have the best prospects in life. Registration and raising the skills and expertise of the workforce is essential in making this a reality.

‘I am delighted to see that we have reached this milestone in our journey of developing a workforce that gives each of us confidence and reassurance that we have the right people with the right skills for this important work.

‘I am very appreciative of all of the effort that both individual workers and their employers have put into achieving this position and would like to thank them for that.'

SSSC Chief Executive Anna Fowlie said:‘In the 14 years since we were created, we've registered half of the social service workforce. That’s a significant achievement at 100,000 people. We’ve worked together with many people and organisations including Scottish Government, employers, representative bodies, education and learning providers and of course social service workers themselves, to reach this point and I feel a great sense of pride and achievement for all involved.

‘One in every 13 people employed in Scotland works in social services and the value to people and communities across the country can’t be underestimated. Whether they are social workers, work in residential or day care, with children or with adults their contribution is invaluable.

‘Through gaining relevant qualifications, career-long learning and particularly working to our Codes of Practice, registration with the SSSC gives the public confidence in the professionalism of the workforce and they can trust that the people providing care and support have the right skills, knowledge and values.’

Social service workers also find that registration makes them feel more valued.

Gwyneth Morrison, manager of a care at home and housing support service said:‘Registration brings the professional recognition that carers deserve.’

Andrea-Maria McGowan, wellbeing worker and Ambassador for Careers in Care said:‘Being registered provides evidence that social service workers are professional and skilled to do their job. Registration allows the people we support and their families the peace of mind that the people supporting them are qualified and held to high standards.’

Aida Grier, Care Business Manager said:‘Registration gives you recognised status in society and gives me self-respect that I’m registered with a professional body.’

Workers on the SSSC Register have to already hold or be working towards a qualification. Significant investment from the Scottish Government and other grants for qualifications and learning is one way that Scotland demonstrates the value it places in its social service workforce.

Today 58% of registered social service workers have the qualification they need and the other 42% are working towards it. Workers also have to undertake continuous professional learning and the SSSC supports this with a range of free learning resources and support, funded by the Scottish Government and other grants.

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