Blog | June 04, 2013

Tuesday’s letters: Hancock is toeing the Tory line

Edmonton JournalMinister Dave Hancock’s response to social workers is one more illustration of why many have abandoned hope for any progress on human services issues by the Redford government.In dismissing social workers’ concerns about new legislation, Hancock adds the insulting suggestion they seem to believe “having the same post-secondary credentials is the overriding key to providing better outcomes for children.” He also says such credentials do not “automatically instil someone with the caring, compassion, concern, knowledge and commitment” needed to be a child-intervention worker.The implication is that perhaps people other than professional social workers might do the job better and more cheaply, as has been happening in other areas of health care and human services.Professional social workers are essential to meeting the needs of Alberta’s most-vulnerable individuals and their families. Ongoing cuts have made social workers’ caseloads unmanageable in too many situations. Now they’re threatened with this obvious move toward de-professionalization, yet Hancock is suggesting they are raising these concerns out of self-interest.It’s deplorable.Hancock has had the reputation of being among the more progressive members of Alberta’s Tory government but again seems comfortable making another round of unnecessary cuts to crucial public services in Canada’s wealthiest province.Larry Booi, board chair, Public Interest AlbertaRead this letter at the Edmonton Journal website.Note: This letter is in response to a letter written by Minister Hancock which responded to the Op-ed by Vice Presient of PIA and Chair of the PIA Task Force, Human Services and Poverty, Lori Sigurdson - Children First bill should not be rushed