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Lead for Forensic Social Work and Safeguarding

Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust
£43,742 to £50,056 per annum
Closing date
16 Jul 2024

View more

Other Health Profession
Band 7
Contract Type
Full Time
An exciting opportunity has arisen for an experienced Social Worker to join Secure & SPLD Division within Mersey Care. We are looking to recruit a dynamic and skilled Social Worker into a band 7 Lead for Forensic Social Work and Safeguarding post at Aspen Wood LSU to work across the Low Secure Service providing leadership to the social work team.

Main duties of the job

Aspen Wood LSU provides care and treatment to patients detained under the Mental Health Act who require their care to be delivered within conditions of low security. Patients routinely have complex needs associated with a severe and enduring mental illness and/or learning disability.

The successful candidate will be experienced at working with Forensic populations and have experience working in a Lead role. They will be required to work closely with colleagues from other disciplines to assess needs and risks within a population of users of forensic services and their families. We are looking for someone with the ability to work collaboratively whilst maintaining professional independence. The successful applicant will work within Aspen Wood LSU services but may be asked to work across the Secure and SpLD division in order to meet service need.

Applicants must be qualified Social Workers, registered with Social Work England and have relevant experience in a leadership role

About us

Mersey Care is one of the largest trusts providing physical health and mental health services in the North West, serving more than 1.4 million people across our region and are also commissioned for services that cover the North West, North Wales and the Midlands.

We offer specialist inpatient and community services that support physical and mental health and specialist inpatient mental health, learning disability, addiction and brain injury services. Mersey Care is one of only three trusts in the UK that offer high secure mental health facilities.

At the heart of all we do is our commitment to 'perfect care' - care that is safe, effective, positively experienced, timely, equitable and efficient. We support our staff to do the best job they can and work alongside service users, their families, and carers to design and develop future services together. We're currently delivering a programme of organisational and service transformation to significantly improve the quality of the services we provide and safely reduce cost as we do so.

Flexible working requests will be considered for all roles.

Job description

Job responsibilities

The successful candidate will be an active member of a multi-disciplinary team and will bring the social care perspective to service planning meetings and individualised care planning. The role involves providing leadership to the social work team, case management to a defined caseload within the CPA framework and working collaboratively with multidisciplinary colleagues to assess needs and risks within a forensic patient population. You will provide a professional social work service to patients, their families and carers and routinely liaise with external stakeholders from the point of admission to discharge.

The successful candidate will have the ability to deliver an efficient and high quality social care service, have well developed assessment and analytical skills alongside effective interpersonal, communication and organisational skills.

You must have good knowledge of the key relevant Health & Social Care and Criminal Justice legislation to work in a forensic setting as well as a good knowledge around safeguarding frameworks. You should have well developed report writing skills as routinely you will be required to complete mental health legislation reports for Managers Hearings and Tribunals alongside assessment reports for admission and discharge.

Person Specification



  • Degree in Social Work or DipSW or CQSW
  • Current Social Work England registration.
  • Post-qualifying training (formally or work based) in relevant areas of social work and/or mental health, learning disability or forensics. Evidence of significant continuing professional and personal development.


  • Masters Degree (MSW) or Post Graduate (PGDipSW)
  • Qualifications relating to the Mental Capacity Act, e.g., Best Interest Assessor.
  • Practice Educator qualification 1 & 2 (PEPS).
  • Approved Mental Health Professional Qualification.



  • Suitable post qualifying experience as a Social Worker
  • Good working knowledge of legislative guidance and policy e.g., Mental Health Act, Mental Capacity Act, Care Act, Human Rights Act and criminal justice frameworks e.g., MAPPA, Victim Liaison, MARAC and Carers' Rights.
  • Knowledge and application of professional standards, codes of conduct and Social Work England standards of proficiency and Professional Capabilities Framework (PCF).
  • Good working understanding of Information Governance, Data Protection and confidentiality.
  • Ability to assess and manage complex cases in a multidisciplinary team setting.
  • Skilled at assessing and implementing risk management frameworks.
  • Skilled at assessing and promoting the involvement of people in developing their own care/ support plans using a strength and asset-based approach.
  • An understanding of Equality, Inclusion and protected characteristics.
  • Experience of working with service users with mental disorders and/or learning disabilities.
  • Experience of presenting reports in formal setting, e.g., Courts, Mental Health Tribunals, Safeguarding Strategy.
  • Experience in working with families
  • Experience of child and adult safeguarding.


  • Experience of working with forensic service users.
  • Experience of supervising others.



  • To be able to practice safely and effectively within scope of practice.
  • To be able to practice within the legal and ethical boundaries of Social Work profession.
  • Understand the key concepts of the knowledge base relevant to Social Work profession.
  • Be able to draw on appropriate knowledge and skills to inform practice.
  • Develop written documents including report writing relevant for practice.
  • An ability to manage time, prioritise work and meet deadlines.
  • To be able to practice as an autonomous professional.
  • To be able to communicate effectively
  • To be able to build compassionate and effective relationships.
  • To be able to maintain records appropriate.
  • Interpersonal skills and resilience to manage complex clinical case work.
  • Written and verbal communication skills to engage with patients, carers and professionals.
  • Well-developed analytic and judgement skills, dealing with complex situations where required to lead on professional social work opinions

Employer details

Employer name

Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust


Aspen Wood

Maghull Health Park


L31 1HW

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