[Pounds Sterling]70,000 Social Workers; Baby P Council Offers Huge Pay Packets to Attract New Staff with 'A Sense of Humour'
Byline: Colin Fernandez and Vanessa Allen
SOCIAL workers' jobs in the area where Baby P died are being advertised at vastly inflated salaries.
Haringey Council - which tells applicants they will need 'a sense of humour' - has offered nearly [pounds sterling]68,000 for a team manager in its children's services department.
That is [pounds sterling]38,000 higher than the UK average, and [pounds sterling]20,000 more than it was offering three years ago.
The North London borough has struggled to recruit social workers in the wake of its failures over Baby Peter and Victoria Climbie.
It has dismissed five staff, including head of children's services Sharon Shoesmith, over Peter's death, Shoesmith, over Peter's death, which came eight months after he was put on its Child Protection Register.
Public anger over the 17- month-old's agonising ordeal has also created problems nationally for councils seeking to recruit social workers.
The Local Government Association found that 60 per cent of councils were experiencing difficulties.
Social work vacancies across the country are running at 14 per cent, and Haringey's rate is 35 per cent, meaning more than a third of its positions are vacant or filled by temporary staff.
That is despite a generous package of benefits including a [pounds sterling]7,000 relocation allowance, seanuclear son ticket loan, 'gold-plated' local government pension scheme, childcare vouchers and a mobile phone. As designated 'key workers', Haringey social workers are also eligible for a loan of up to [pounds sterling]50,000 towards buying a property.
The [pounds sterling]68,000 post, which has now closed to applications, was for a 'locum team manager' for Haringey's Children in Need safeguarding service and was advertised on an employment agency website.
The advert said: 'You will follow the current guidelines and legislation but also relate to young children by providing a self centred care service with a smile and a sense of humour. …