Removal by Agreement means that through this process, a registered person can apply to be removed from the Register without being referred to a Panel.
A registered person can apply for this at any stage in the fitness to practise process.
Applying for removal by agreement does not mean that a registered person has the right to be removed, but it enables Social Care Wales to agree to removal in an appropriate case.
1. Ms Beverley Young ('Ms Young) registered with Social Care Wales (SCW) as a Domiciliary Care Worker on 8 December 2019. At all material times, Ms Young was employed by Deluxe Homecare Ltd.
2. On 27 March 2019, Ms Young attended an investigatory interview with her employer. She was asked if she had been doing shopping for Individual A, who was a user of care and support. Ms Young admitted that she had been doing Individual A's shopping in her own time. She said that, whenever she did, Individual A wrote a cheque made payable to Ms Young's daughter for the amount of the shopping. Ms Young said that she had been aware of the policy relating to handling service user's money, including record keeping. However, she said that, if she didn’t do the shopping for Individual A, nobody else would have done so. Ms Young also stated that Individual A's social worker was aware that she was doing his shopping.
3. On 27 March 2019, the Responsible Individual for Deluxe Homecare Ltd wrote a letter to Ms Young. The letter stated:
'Following careful consideration, taking into account the number of personnel both within social services and your previous company Allied who were aware of the situation, I believe that you were placed in an untenable situation which was both unfair and unacceptable. Both myself and the social worker therefore agree that to balance what you have done against the facts it is appropriate to issue you with just a verbal warning on this occasion.
The verbal warning will remain on your file for a period of 6 months and the expectations attached are that you will not provide personal shopping for any of your service users if this is not part of your scheduled activities. Further, if you have any concerns in the future you will report them directly to me or to your branch manager. Any further breach of policy and procedure will be considered to be a serious matter'.
Whilst registered as a Domiciliary Care Worker and employed by Deluxe Care Ltd.
(1) On unknown dates between 27 March 2019 and 28 May 2021 you abused and/or exploited your relationship with a user of care and support, Individual A, by taking loans and/or gifts of money from him.
4. Individual A, having previously been residing alone in his property, was admitted to hospital following a fall. When he was in hospital, his former wife attended Individual A's property to clean. Whilst at the address, she opened a bank statement and noted that the transactions included withdrawals of cash (e.g. £500) from a cashpoint and card payments for petrol. A cheque book was also found, with stubs with figures written on including £3,000, labelled 'windows' and £150 labelled 'B junior'. This information was shared with Individual A's daughter, who then reported the matter to the police.
5. On 28 May 2021, the police attended Individual A when he was in hospital. He told the police that Ms Young did his shopping and had access to his bank card and PIN for this purpose. Some of the transactions that were concerning were put to Individual A. Although he could not account for all of them, he told the police that he trusted Ms Young implicitly and was not worried about the money that had been spent and was consenting to the payments. Individual A said that he was also aware that Ms Young's mother had cancer and could not afford new windows and he had gifted her this money and signed the cheque.
6. Ms Young was suspended by her employer, but she resigned by email dated 6 August 2021.
7. In addition to the matter being referred to the police, a safeguarding referral was also made. At a Professional Concerns Meeting on 1 September 2021, it was noted that the police had concluded that no crime had been committed. Individual A had been interviewed by the police on two occasions and had confirmed that he had given permission for each transaction and he fully trusted Ms Young. For these reasons, Ms Young had not been interviewed by the police under caution.
8. The minutes stated also that Ms Young had taken advantage of Individual A and breached the policy and procedure of Deluxe Care Ltd. It was also noted that Ms Young had transferred £9,000 back to Individual A of her own volition indicating that Ms Young had accessed this sum of money from Individual A.
9. In an email to the Fitness to Practise Senior Officer, Ms Young said:
'I understand the seriousness of this case, I am aware I broke all policies and procedures. I deserve to be removed from your register. I am only sorry for what I put the service user and his family and the company through.'
10. Ms Young confirms her agreement to the facts set out in this statement.
11. Ms Young confirms that it is not her intention to work in the future in any capacity which would require her to be registered by SCW and that she wishes her name to be removed from SCW's register by agreement under Rule 9 of the Investigation Rules 2020. This statement of agreed facts has been prepared for that purpose.
12. If, contrary to her expressed intention, Ms Young should make an application for registration with SCW at a future date, she acknowledges that SCW will have regard to the contents of this statement of agreed facts when considering such an application.