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Residential child care worker’s suspension extended for three months

21 November 2019
Social Care Wales

A suspended residential child care worker from Wrexham has been barred from working in a registered social care role in Wales for a further three months, after a fitness to practise panel met last week to review his case.

Ben Berry was suspended from working in a registered social care role in Wales for nine months in March 2019, after a hearing found his fitness to practise was impaired because of dishonesty.

The decision was made following an incident in May 2018 when a young person in Mr Berry’s care ran away during an excursion and Mr Berry gave conflicting accounts about what happened to the police.

Mr Berry’s suspension was due to end on 27 January 2020, but after reviewing his case, the panel decided to extend the suspension for another three months because Mr Berry had not provided any new information to show he had remedied his behaviour.

Explaining its decision, the panel said: “We decided that Mr Berry should be given a further opportunity to demonstrate some positive change. We have come to this conclusion for the following reasons:

“Mr Berry has not disengaged from this process. He participated in a pre-hearing review and has responded to Social Care Wales’s correspondence by email when prompted to do so.

“When Mr Berry gave evidence to the panel in March, he showed a passion for working with young people, and he and his manager explained how he was able to create a rapport with the young people in his care because he had been in their position himself during his own childhood.

“Although they are old, the references [provided] support the previous panel’s conclusion that Mr Berry had something valuable to contribute to social care work.”

The panel continued: “Mr Berry needs to demonstrate to the next review panel that he is able to act honestly and with integrity in a pressured situation.”

The panel added: “If Mr Berry does not provide new information addressing his dishonesty for the next review, it is very likely that a Removal Order will be made.”