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Job description

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West London Trust

Social Work Team Manager

Job Type






£56,388 - £62,785

Posted Date

13 June 2023


Closing Date

25 June 2023

We offer an exciting opportunity for a Forensic Social Work Team Manager to assume a leadership role within our team at West London Forensic Service. As a key member of our forensic mental health service, you will make a significant impact on the lives of individuals and their families. You will enhance your professional skills and expand your network within the field of forensic social work.

You will remain at the forefront of best practices, ensuring the highest standards of service provision to our patients, while also prioritizing the well-being and support of their families. You will actively engage with external stakeholders, forging alliances that strengthen the quality of our services and contribute to reducing delays in care pathways. Your responsibility will encompass safeguarding both adults and children who come into contact with our patients. Your leadership and guidance will support the team providing Social Work interventions, including assisting Social Workers in writing and presenting Mental Health Tribunal reports, ensuring a comprehensive and effective representation of patients' needs, while also considering public protection and addressing the concerns of victims. You will play a key role in identifying and helping to resolve Section 117 disputes. You will collaborate with relevant stakeholders to ensure that patients' rights to aftercare services are upheld, facilitating smooth transitions and preventing any unnecessary delays or conflicts.

Main duties of the job

- Lead and manage a team of forensic social workers, providing guidance, support, and supervision to ensure the delivery of effective and person-centred care.
- Develop and maintain strong professional relationships with external stakeholders, including local authorities, community mental health teams, and other relevant agencies, to ensure effective collaboration and seamless care transitions for patients.
- Stay updated with current best practices, legislation, and research in forensic mental health and safeguarding, and ensure the team's adherence to relevant policies and guidelines.
- Oversee the assessment and management of safeguarding concerns, both for adults and children, and ensure compliance with statutory safeguarding procedures.
- Work closely with the multidisciplinary team, including psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses, and occupational therapists, to develop and implement comprehensive care plans for patients.
- Provide expert Social Work advice and support to the team on complex cases and act as a source of professional expertise.
- Contribute to the development and implementation of service improvement initiatives, promoting a culture of continuous learning and development.

Working for our organisation

West London NHS Trust is one of the most diverse providers of mental health, community and social care in the UK.

Our 3,982 staff care for people in hospital and in the community, helping them to recover and go on to lead full and productive lives. We aim to be the best organisation of our kind in the country.

We provide care and treatment for more than 800,000 people living in the London boroughs of Ealing, Hammersmith & Fulham and Hounslow, delivering services in the community (at home, in GP surgeries and care homes), hospital, specialist clinics and forensic (secure) units.

We’re rated good overall by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Together, we’re committed to promoting hope and wellbeing, working with patients, service users, carers, families and partners across the communities we serve.

We are keen to ensure that our workforce reflects the community it serves, particularly in terms of ethnicity, gender, disability, LGBTQ+ and experience of mental illness.

Detailed job description and main responsibilities

West London NHS Trust provides high, medium secure and low secure services for men, in addition to a low secure, medium secure and enhanced medium secure services for women. There are also community services provided by Specialist Community Forensic Teams, which cover eight boroughs in North London.

This role manages the Forensic Social Work Team at West London Forensic Service and will provide visible leadership to the Social Workers, supervising the (Think Ahead) Consultant Social Worker, Senior Practitioner and Social Workers.

The successful candidate will represent the Forensic Social Work Team at a range of managerial, safeguarding and clinical meetings, e.g. Admissions Panel, Security Steering Group, local Safeguarding Governance, Reducing Restrictive Practice, in addition to covering other meetings (such as the Heads of Service, the Senior Management Team, and Clinical Governance meetings) as deputy for the Head of the Forensic Social Work Service.

The post holder will provide advice to multidisciplinary team colleagues regarding social care in the forensic setting, including expertise on Child and Adult safeguarding, section 117 Mental Health act, Mental Capacity Act, Care Act, victims’ issues, MAPPA and MARAC. The post holder will facilitate the provision of social work student placements and the Assessed and Supported Year in Employment for Newly Qualified Social Workers. The post holder will work collaboratively with their peer at Broadmoor Hospital, and provide a consistent Social Work service across the two teams (where appropriate).
Person specification
Essential criteria

- Degree in Social Work or DipSW or CQSW
- Up-To-Date Social Work England Registration
- Post-qualifying training (formally or through evidenced on-the-job training in relevant areas of social work and/or mental health)

Desirable criteria

- Relevant management/ leadership training
- AMHP qualification
- Qualifications relating to the Mental Capacity Act, e.g. Best Interests Assessor
- Practice Educator Qualification 1 and 2 (PEPS)

Essential criteria

- Extensive experience in mental health social work and in supervising social workers and/or social work students
- Extensive experience of working effectively with professional networks to ensure collaborative approaches and achieve results
- Experience of advising and consulting with senior multidisciplinary team colleagues about social work and community care issues

Desirable criteria

- Experience of chairing Team meetings and Safeguarding meetings and Best Interests meetings, setting agendas and agreeing minutes of meetings

Essential criteria

- Detailed knowledge of Part 3 of the Mental Health Act, and its associated Code of Practice
- Knowledge about the Mental Capacity Act and about assessing capacity and best interests
- Knowledge of Human Rights Act, and criminal justice legislation relevant to forensic mental health social work (including sex offending, arson, stalking and extremism)
- Detailed knowledge of section 117 MHA, and the relevant policies and procedures pertaining to ordinary residence and disputes
- Detailed knowledge of MAPPA and victim liaison requirements, carers’ rights, Child and Adult safeguarding
- Knowledge of Equality and Diversity issues within mental health services

Essential criteria

- Skills in writing clear and concise formal documents to a high standard of literacy, including providing assistance to team members with their reports
- Basic Microsoft Excel, MS Teams, Word and PowerPoint skills
- Written and verbal communication skills to engage with patients, carers and professionals at various levels of seniority across health and social care

Other Requirements
Essential criteria

- Interpersonal skills and resilience to manage highly complex emotional clinical situations, and in helping to resolve differences between colleagues
- Ability to undertake all statutory and mandatory training, including breakaway (subject to Occupational Health clearance)
- Ability to travel to the other Forensic Social Work Site (either Broadmoor Hospital or West London Forensic Service) to support cross site working and initiatives
- Willingness to contribute to Trust Wide Social Work forums and initiatives

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