Scots social work body hires agency

Scotland's Social Work Ins­pection Agency (SWIA) has hired Consolidated Communications as its first retained agency.

The SWIA – a recently formed body of the Scottish Executive – will work with Consolidated for an unconfirmed period. Edinburgh-based director Will Holt leads the account, reporting to SWIA corporate man­ager Andrew Wilkinson.

‘We are inspecting the social work [and criminal justice] services of 32 local authorities, so there is inevitably going to be controversial material that we need to talk to the media about,’ Wilkinson said.

SWIA’s ins­pection of local authorities is due to be completed by the end of 2008.

Scheduled inspection reports for 2007 include the authorities of Orkney, Highland, Perth and Kinross, West Lothian and Glasgow.

Cons­olidated’s remit includes managing the corporate rep­ut­ation of SWIA and publicising the inspection reports, as they are published.

Holt said: ‘SWIA deals with sensitive issues – these reports, often very high profile, will lead the news agenda. We will work with the in-house teams to ensure people are aware of SWIA.’

The English equivalent of the body is the Commission for Social Care Inspection, which does not retain a PR agency. Its head of communications is Robin Banerji.

Judith Thomas is the group’s director of comms, user and public involvement.

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