A residential child care worker from Gwynedd has been removed from the Register of Social Care Workers after a Social Care Wales hearing found his fitness to practise was currently impaired because of serious misconduct.
The hearing was told that in May 2020, Luke Foster smoked illegal drugs while on duty at a children’s home that housed young people with a history of substance misuse.
The panel was told that in a meeting with his employer later that month, Mr Foster admitted to smoking cannabis while on duty and said he was “genuinely sorry”.
After considering the evidence, the panel concluded that Mr Foster’s fitness to practise was currently impaired because of serious misconduct.
Explaining its decision, the panel said: “Mr Foster’s behaviour is serious. He was smoking an illegal drug whilst he was on shift and responsible for the well-being of vulnerable individuals using care and support services. The fact Mr Foster was under the influence of drugs during his shift put the young people at potential risk of harm.”
The panel continued: “We have not been provided with any evidence that Mr Foster has taken steps to remedy his conduct since the time of the incident.
“Unfortunately, in the absence of engagement and evidence of remediation we cannot be confident that if he were to find himself in a similar, stressful situation, he would not react in a similar manner.
“We cannot therefore be confident that his conduct is highly unlikely to be repeated.”
The panel decided to remove Mr Foster from the Register, saying: “[C]onfidence in the social care profession would be undermined by allowing Mr Foster to remain on the Register in circumstances where he has failed to engage or remediate his conduct.
“We consider that a Removal Order is proportionate and the only outcome which provides the necessary protection to members of the public and the wider public interest.”
Mr Foster was not present at the one-day hearing, which was held over Zoom last week.