Title says it all, it’s about people who say one thing but do another. I was bought up to do what is right, not what is easy. Many years ago my mum’s boss was the target of homophobic bullying, there were about 20 people in the office who witnessed this happening. The bullying was by those higher up. The target put in a grievance, and only my mum and one other acted as witnesses. They knew they would suffer for it but they did what was right..
Oh boy did they suffer for it, it was absolutely horrific, the victim ended up moving away and buying a house with their partner and was unable to work again. My mum and her friend had to put up with so much crap solely because they spoke up and did what was right.
Doing the right thing isn’t always easy, doing the right thing may cost you a lot in terms of, well everything, but doing the right thing is always, well, the right thing to do.
The further down the social work rabbit hole I go, as well as the public servant rabbit hole, the more disgusted I get.
People in a position where they have a platform, people with the power to change things, or at least shout loudly that things are wrong and need to be changed. All i’m seeing is people using their platform and power for their own ends.
Whether that is to increase their public profile or for money, or because they don’t want to lose their position of power, or maybe it’s just because they want to look like they care but in reality they only care about themselves.
I’m absolutely sickened by it, and sickened that these people have people following them and believing the things they are saying.
I’m going to start with Tilly Baden, columnist for Social Work News and co-host of Social Work Radio. Tilly is a best interest assessor and team manager within an adult social care team.
On Friday 9th December an article she authored titled “Top tips for dealing with a toxic social work manager” was published on Social Work News. Tilly has also authored “10 signs your social work manager is toxic”, as well as being the co-host on the Social Work Radio podcast of the same name.
This weeks Social Work Radio was titled “How to best prepare social work students for practice”, it was following on from two anonymous articles posted to Social Work News in past week. The first was a piece by Maisie McDonald, an anonymous child protection social worker who stated that lecturers were teaching students to think how they think and not how to do the job. She states that she is currently a practice educator for a student social worker and compared the student to a dog,
She states “Last weeks she even cracked out some social work theory cards during one of our supervisions. I’m more used to cracking a joke.” A previous article titled “Supervision is a total waste of time… but people are too scared to say it” has Maisie stating “But in reality and in it’s current form it’s totally useless”. I can only go on what all of the replies to that article on Social Work World stated, which was that supervision is vital and a great thing and that her manager must be a bit rubbish.
She has to give supervision to her student social worker, given her negative thoughts on supervision, and that to her it’s just a tick box exercise, her poor student will be getting terrible supervision sessions.
She states regarding her student “Seriously though, she’s great. Excitable and tiring, but great all the same. Like a Labrador puppy’. Derogatory language against her student, referring her as tiring and comparing her to a dog.
But for all her eagerness there’s one thing that grates and I’m trying to beat out of her (not literally beat out of her, please don’t call the cops, I’ve only just renewed my Social Work England registration and declared myself as fit for practice). That’s her belief that everything her lecturers are teaching her about social work is relevant and practical in the real world.
She then goes on to rip into the students total lack of skills. Maisie bigs herself up by saying “We’re getting there, thanks to my (potentially bad) influence”
It’s a whole article denigrating lecturers and the student social worker who has been unlucky enough to have Maisie as a practice educator.
If I knew who Maisie was I would raise a complaint with her employer, and I would also consider raising a concern with Social Work England. It would be easy for the student to recognise herself in that article and read about how Maisie feels about her. It also brings the profession into disrepute as it makes out that both students and practice educators are incredibly stupid. Also add lecturers to that.
It’s bad, really bad.
A couple of days later someone who is anonymous wrote in to Social Work News with an article that goes against everything that Maisie had said regarding universities and lecturers. This was after I saw many tweets regarding the article where everyone was saying the same thing regarding how wrong she was and also how wrong it is to talk about a student like that.
My opinion is that the anonymous article refuting what Maisie has written was written by a member of the SWN writing team, they just didn’t expect the responses that the Maisie article received.
This weeks Social Work Radio podcast was about the whole thing. The podcast is Vince Peart and Co Host Tilly Baden discussing the article and the things around it.
Vince Peart talks about people writing for SWN anonymously, lists the anonymous writers, and states that he has written anonymously for Community Care, the Guardian, and the Daily Mail. He fails to mention the many years he wrote anonymously as Social Work Tutor, including writing a book. I find this incredibly strange and also that he never openly discusses his Social Work Tutor years.
I find it very suspicious regarding the anonymous response to the initial article. The original article was posted on Saturday 3rd December. Vince Peart stated in the podcast that he didn’t see it over the weekend as he was busy but that he contacted some of the people who commented on the article on Monday so they could have a chat. The anonymous response was posted on SWN on the morning of Wednesday 7th December. Vince Peart states on the podcast that he received that anonymous submission on the Tuesday night and decided to publish it on the Wednesday morning. Lot’s of people submitted responses to SWN, most were willing to put their names to their response. Yet Vince Peart chose one that came in on Tuesday night and published it anonymously the next morning. Why not publish one with a name attached to it?
During the podcast Vince Peart said the following “
I do get the sense of frustration from practice educators such as <beep> in relation to how they are feeling in these situations. She wrote this because she was feeling frustrated but i think the targets all wrong.
The beep was put in afterwards because Vince Peart said Maisie’s real name. Given that Tilly Baden did not to react to Maisie’s name being said she must know who Maisie is as well.
Which brings me to Tilly Baden’s latest article which is here:
I read the whole article while thinking of Maisie McDonald the whole time. For all intents and purposes, Maisie McDonald is the student social workers manager, she is in effect taking on that role, and given what Maisie has said about the student and Maisie’s thoughts on supervision and other things, in my opinion Maisie is a toxic social work practice educator. So a lot of what Tilly has written about toxic managers applies to Maisie and so does the advice given.
Tilly asks “Is there bullying?” My opinion is that bullying is clear in that article, the student is being bullied by Maisie both in person and then online by writing an article about her where she would be easily recognised by herself and others.
The student is a student, she likely can’t do much of anything because of the position she holds, she is also reliant on the placement to advance on her course, she also needs Maisie to say good things about her.
In her article Tilly Baden writes about the effect a toxic manager can have on your mental health. I’ve been there before and it is truly awful, it affects your mental health horrendously, you are constantly on edge and have a feeling of dread in your stomach.
I ended up leaving my job, easy choice, I just got another job. The student in Maisie’s article is in a difficult position, and it sounds like she is very young, apparently placements are hard to come by, Tilly said that herself in this weeks podcast, so the student is really stuck between a rock and a hard place.
This is from Tilly’s article:
We are all obligated to abide by our Code of Conduct from our regulator, and one of these obligations includes reporting fitness to practice issues. If your manager is breaching their duties, then you must report them. You cannot allow them to be making life-changing decisions about vulnerable children and adults if they are incompetent to do so.
I do feel that social workers have a moral duty if nothing else to report a social worker who is not adhering to the professional standards. I’d report Maisie McDonald to the regulator myself if I knew her real name, i’d also contact her place of employment as well.
Tilly Baden knows who she is, she did not react when Vince Peart said Maisie’s real name in the podcast so Tilly must know her real name.
So we have Tilly Baden, the amazing social worker giving social workers who are dealing with a toxic manager ways in which they may be able to help themselves.
We also have Tilly Baden totally ignoring a social worker who has published evidence that her fitness to practise may be currently impaired. Not doing a thing about it.
Maisie has been very open about how she is treating the student social and her treatment of the student social worker is appalling, both the way she treats her directly, and the way she has made all of this public.
During the podcast Vince mentioned an article that Maisie wrote back in July regarding men in social work, it apparently caused so much backlash that Vince took it down, I have no idea what it was about as I cannot find anything about it online except for Maisie’s reaction on her Twitter:
What a horrible person. Given what she’s written In her tweet I can only take a guess at the content of her article. Given that it was so bad, and Vince mentioned the backlash was so bad that he had to take it down, she doesn’t appear to have reflected on what she wrote and taken on board all of the criticism. In fact she’s written a spite filled tweet against middle class and middle-aged white men in social work.
Given that in February this year she wrote an article asking where all the single male social social workers are because she wanted a boyfriend
Obviously she only wants young working class men working in Social Work.
Given that I am a member of the public I have my own way of deciding if someone is a good social worker. I just think to myself “Would I want the social worker to be within one mile of my children?”. For Maisie the answer is a solid no, absolutely not. Going by what she has posted she is a terrible person and a terrible social worker.
She thinks that things like supervision, which are there to assist social workers in being the best they can be, is a waste of time and it’s logical to conclude that her supervision with her student is a complete waste of time and of no benefit to her student either.
I dread to think what was in the article that Vince Peart took down given the ones she’s written that have been divisive and he has felt are okay to stay up. Her response on her twitter to her July post being taken down is just absolutely horrible. I would not want a social worker anywhere near my children who would reply with that in response to complaints.
I very much doubt that given her ‘wanting a social worker boyfriend’ post of February that the deleted article was about something serious such as sexual harassment,
I have worked in male dominated workplaces and there was a lot of banter. I had one incident of sexual harassment where one of the top people in the company came up to me when I was in the office alone and started giving me a massage. I just froze. Luckily a manager came along and shouted at me angrily that I hadn’t done something in another part of the building that he’d asked me to do and I had to do it right this second. The manager then caught up with me and told me he’d be a witness if I wanted to make a complaint about what had happened. The manager had a young family and I didn’t want him to lose his job just because he had witnessed what happened so I didn’t report.
With ‘me too’ and a lot in the media about sexual abuse and harrasment against women, I cannot see how an article about something like that would have been taken down.
Vince Peart likes Social Work News to have divisive articles. Both him and Tilly made me laugh out loud during this weeks podcase when Vince Peart stated that he once had an anonymous article posted in the Daily Mail and was saying Tilly was probably against that and were all about how much the Daily Mail has such a bad reputation for printing terrible things.
I was talking to someone a couple of weeks ago and we were likening Social Work News to the Daily Mail, they are very similar in the way they post stories to get reactions, over emphasise things like the risk of getting killed or seriously injured on the job, that kind of thing.
All that is missing is articles about immigration and why transgender people are bad.
Oh wait, they covered that here:
What has the fact that the serial killer was trans got to do with any of it? For a start it’s a US story, which i’ve noticed Vince Peart only prints when it’s something sensational and has the ability to scare social workers, and the serial killer being trans has nothing to do with the story.
I’d have a lot to say about the story and the serial killer using words that I will not publish here, i’d have a lot to say about the fact that someone who had already murdered two people was out of prison, and the words i’d call her would not be suitable for a family audience.
Vince went for the Daily Mail strategy of using the word trans in headlines when it has nothing to do with the story.
So back to Tilly Baden, who wrote the what to do about a toxic manager article. Maisie McDonald should be reported to the regulator. She’s published enough info for the student to recognise herself in the article, she’s written some really horrible things about the student.
Her rold of a practice educator is of such a low quality that she seems to be unaware that it is her job to teach the student all of the practical aspects of being a social worker, blaming Universities that the student didn’t already have the knowledge of many different recording systems, and the ability to do the practical aspects of a job that she is on placement to be taught those aspects.
It’s clear that the student is not going to get taught well by Maisie who appears exasperated she has to teach the student these things. That is terrible for the student for both now, and for when she becomes qualified, especially if Maisie’s attitude to social work rubs off on her.
Tilly knows her name, and i’m guessing she knows where she works, if not a quick look on the SWE site would give her that information. Contacting her employer at the very least to make them aware of how she acts at work is a must. Raising a concern over Maisie’s fitness to practise is something that both myself, and others feel is appropriate. During the period between the publication of Maisie’s lecturer article and the publication of the anonymous article disagreeing with Maisie two days later, I saw so many social workers calling Maisie’s fitness to practise into question.
We haven’t got a clue who she is, Tilly Baden does and she’s a hypocrite for writing the ‘what to do if you have a toxic manager’ article but not doing what she tells other people to do when faced with a toxic social worker. By all accounts Maisie McDonald is a toxic social worker.
I’d report Maisie to her employer and to SWE if I had her details, not because I have to, but if I wouldn’t want her to be within a mile of my children, it’s not fair for me to expect other children to be within a mile of her either.
Almost every single one of Maisie’s posts are controversial, and not in a good way. Writing things that will make people think is fine, writing things that some may disagree with is fine, writing things just to wind people up and get views is not fine.
You may have noticed that I have not called upon Vince Peart to report Maisie McDonald to her employer and the regulator, this is because it’s Vince Peart who chooses what gets published on SWN. He published the article denigrating the student social worker, so he’s hardly going to report Maisie for suspecting that her fitness to practise is currently impaired.
I now feel like i’m going to have to read the Daily Mail to get a dose of journalism that is more fair and balanced than the journalism at SWN is.
One of my children attempted to kill themselves due to social workers who should not be social workers, but other social workers who could clearly see they had done wrong, failed to stick up for my children and make reports. This is why i’ve written this, i’ve seen it from the side of the harm that a bad social worker such as Maisie can do to a child. I’m frustrated that all I can do is watch it happen, and had to listen to both Vince Peart and Tilly Baden laughing on the latest podcast about Maisie McDonalds posts.
Next post will be about SWN, again.
Trading Standards are going to be taking me to court due to the name of my blog not matching with my recent content.