Social worker who missed key meetings and faked records of them struck off

PUBLISHED: 11:55 23 August 2017

He has been dismissed.

He has been dismissed.

Archant

A social worker who worked with young offenders has been struck off after being 'repeatedly dishonest', failing to turn up to key case meetings and faking records on North Somerset Council's systems.

Mark Henry failed to attend meetings in relation to three different cases and was found to have tried to cover up his mistakes by falsifying records.

Mr Henry worked for the council from May 2007 until June 2016, although he was suspended in February 2016 when details of his misconduct came to light.

The Health & Care Professions Tribunal Service (HCPTS) has this month held a misconduct hearing for Mr Henry which found he ‘failed in his duty’ to support young people.

The HCPTS struck him off and its findings say his misconduct involved ‘repeated dishonesty’ and likely had an ‘adverse impact’ on young offenders and a victim of domestic violence.

In March 2015 Mr Henry was assigned to the case of a young offender who had been charged with assaulting his girlfriend.

The social worker was due to meet with police to discuss how to support the offender and reduce the risk of harm to the parties involved.

But he failed to turn up to the meeting and the panel was told he ‘forgot’ due to the anniversary of his mother’s death.

Mr Henry also failed to attend a meeting at a prison in January 2016 where multiple agencies were due to discuss a plan for a young person who had served seven months in prison. Mr Henry was on annual leave and the panel was told he did not believe him missing the meeting was ‘that much of an issue’.

A third young person should have had contact with Mr Henry four times a month, but when his line manager checked on the council’s electronic system there were no logged meetings in two months.

Mr Henry updated the records, adding five fake appointments, but the young person told Mr Henry’s line manager he had not seen him ‘for months’.

The HCPTS’ findings say: “(His misconduct) is likely to undermine the relationship of trust required between social workers and service users.”

It also says the panel found ‘no evidence’ of remorse from Mr Henry, or any acknowledgement of the impact his misconduct had on others.

They said striking-off was the ‘only appropriate sanction’ to protect the public and maintain confidence in the profession.

A spokesman for the council said: “Mr Henry no longer works for the council.

“It is a requirement of a social worker’s registration that practice concerns are referred to their professional body, the HCPC.

“We referred the matter to them and they have investigated and struck him off their register. We take these matters very seriously. Mr Henry resigned before we concluded the disciplinary process.”

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