A residential child care worker from Wrexham has been removed from the Register of Social Care Workers after a Social Care Wales hearing found his fitness to practise was impaired.
Peter Richards was accused of financial improprieties in January and June this year while working as a senior residential child care worker at a children’s home.
The hearing heard that Mr Richards took at least £70 from the home without permission in January 2017 and failed to return the money for at least five days, despite being asked repeatedly to do so.
He was then given a written warning in June 2017 that stated he was not to have any unsupervised dealings with the home’s finances for 12 months. But the hearing heard that on 24 June 2017, Mr Richards accessed the home’s safe unsupervised.
After hearing the evidence, the committee concluded that Mr Richards’s fitness to practise was impaired because of his serious misconduct.
The committee said: “We have found that Mr Richards behaved dishonestly in his dealings with money, which belonged to young people. We have also found that, five months later, he breached an instruction imposed to prevent repeated financial misconduct.
“We concluded that Mr Richards’s actions had the potential to prejudice the interests of the young people directly through the absence of their pocket money. It may also have indirectly affected the level of their care by undermining the trust between care colleagues and by causing resources to be diverted into disciplinary investigations…
“We had no evidence that Mr Richards had shown insight into his behaviour or that he had undertaken any remediation. His conduct was repeated. We concluded that Mr Richards’s fitness to practise is currently impaired.”
The committee decided to remove Mr Richards from the Register, saying: “A Removal Order is necessary in this case to protect members of the public and to maintain public confidence given Mr Richards’s dishonesty and the seriousness of the impairment.”