Lifting the voice of support workers
In her vlog this week Sarah Maguire supports the professionalism of the support worker role...
Hello, and it’s Friday once again and in my vlog this week I'm very proud to support the publication called “Don’t ever call us unskilled again.” The report, (published by Paradigm), was based on the responses from The Gr8 Support Covid-19 Snapshot Survey which invited support workers across the country to capture their experience, thoughts, ideas and learning during the pandemic and share those with the nation.
The title of the report is in part a response to comments made by some members of the government that called care work unskilled.
For me the report highlights the values and the humanity that is at the core of the support worker role. Without fuss or fanfare support workers carried on with their jobs to ensure people’s lives were protected. I am and will continue to be humbled by your resilience and your commitment, and outraged that anyone could describe your work as unskilled.
The truth as quoted by support staff themselves is that, “Dedicated staff and management teams carried on even though the world stood still around them.”
“We have helped each other cope with a lot of fear”, said one support worker, “and anxieties due to the situation, stressed with the worry that the people we support would contract Covid-19. I’m proud of myself and my colleagues for keeping on going and with our role and trying to make the time as enjoyable as possible for the people that we support.”
“Support workers do not just clean and dress, and feed and medicate,” said another support worker, “they support people to live their best lives - to understand what’s happening around them, to live as independently as possible. They have fun with the people they are supporting, and they make connections. They’re dedicated and professional in all that they do.”
It has taken the pandemic for the general public to realise the contribution that support workers are making on a daily basis, caring for vulnerable adults, during and after the pandemic.
People feel it’s a privilege to work in health and social care so I think we need to shout it from the roof tops - the profile of support workers must be understood and broadcast across society to ensure that your role is seen and valued.
Have a good weekend and see you next week. Bye.