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UK Reports First Death of A Social Worker Due to COVID-19

UK - Peter John, leader of Southwark Council in London took to Twitter on Tuesday to report the death of one of its members of staff reported to be attributed to COVID-19. It is unclear as to whether the employee had contracted COVID-19 as a direct result of their employment.

This comes as a second Southwark Council employee is also reported to have died.

The British Association of Social Work (BASW) put out a press release noting they were 'deeply saddened to read reports on the loss of a social worker to COVID-19'. 

Our recent article Coronavirus and Social Work: Are We Coping? noted that concerns have been raised that Social Workers are not getting adequate protective equipment to safely protect front-line staff. BASW's recent survey of practitioners found that the majority of social workers are unclear on the protocols and resources to keep themselves safe. In particular, it is unclear how those caring for others with an underlying health condition are being effectively isolated.

This death comes at a time where governments around the world are asking for increased support from workers who are deemed essential in the response to COVID-19.

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