Personal Safety for Social Workers and Health Professionals

By (author) Brian Atkins

Publication date:

28 May 2013

Length of book:

144 pages


Critical Publishing



ISBN-13: 9781909330337

Social workers and health professionals are often placed in situations where they are verbally or physically threatened by service users and others.This book helps you recognise potential risk in situations, when to avoid involvement, and how best to manage these risks. The book will give professionals confidence in working effectively in such conditions.

The book covers the theoretical understanding of the impact of threats on professional safety and decision-making, including:

  • the reality of the experience of social workers and other professionals – statistics and case examples
  • the impact of physical and psychological threat
  • hostage theory as it applies to social work

 It also addresses actions that workers can take to greatly reduce risk such as:

  • improving safety awareness
  • teamwork support
  • supervision
  • organisational responses and the duty of care of employers

 Practical steps that workers can take to protect themselves are explained  including:

  • conflict management, diffusion and de-escalation techniques
  • basic self-protection –very simple defence mechanisms

This book will appeal to both practitioners and students. It helps students to become aware of the factors which may affect judgement in child protection cases and assist in managing cases on placement. It helps professional practitioners in managing the anxieties associated with their current case load and provides strategies to manage these unfortunately common workplace experiences.