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Residential child care worker suspended for 12 months because of serious misconduct

07 December 2020
Social Care Wales

A residential child care worker from Wrexham has been given a 12-month suspension after a Social Care Wales hearing found her fitness to practise is currently impaired because of serious misconduct.

During the two-day remote hearing, which took place last week over Zoom, Rebecca White admitted to engaging in inappropriate messages and phone calls with a colleague on several occasions in November and December 2019, in which the colleague shared his fantasy about having sex with a child.

Appearing before the panel, Ms White said she recognised she should not have engaged in the messages and phone calls with the colleague, and that she should have reported the conversations to her employer at the time.

After considering the evidence and Ms White’s admissions, the panel found the charges proved, concluding that Ms White acted in a way that fell short of the standard expected of social care workers and put the young people in her care at risk of harm.

The panel therefore decided that Ms White’s fitness to practise was currently impaired because of serious misconduct and suspended her from working in a registered social care role in Wales for 12 months. The Suspension Order will be reviewed three months before it is due to come to an end.

Explaining its decision, the panel told Ms White: “We are satisfied that each of the charges you have admitted (and which we have found proved) amount to serious misconduct.”

The panel explained its decision to suspend Ms White, telling her: “This will, adequately protect the public by preventing you from working in the social care sector (in the shorter term at least) but will also afford you an opportunity to develop fuller insight into your misconduct [and] put measures in place to remediate that misconduct.”

The panel continued: “We do not consider that there is any evidence of harmful deep-seated personality or attitudinal problems, that, of themselves, prevent this from being a workable order in your case.”

Concluding its decision, the panel said: “We do, however, think it essential that your suspension order is subject to a review hearing, at which you will have to demonstrate to a panel that you have remedied your proven misconduct.”