The Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social Workers wishes to express solidarity with colleagues in the Maltese Association of Social Workers (MASW) who are engaged in industrial action.
Members of MASW have been striking in order to seek improved work conditions, alongside employees of the Foundation for Social Welfare Services (FSWS), including psychologists, family therapists and clerks. This follows similar action by teachers and pilots in Malta.
They have called for better pay and continuous training. The strike has been ongoing for a fortnight and is set to escalate this week.
Social workers are society’s conscience and often act as the last line of defence for families and vulnerable individuals experiencing crisis. Around the world many vital social services are critically underfunded; often social workers find themselves struggling to perform their duties with limited resources. The expectations of what social workers can achieve with minimal resources and support are often unrealistic and unreasonable.
This is the case in Malta. Social workers in the country have complained about a lack of funding and limits to services.
ANZASW considers the grievances of colleagues in Malta to be representative of trends that generalise globally and which merit serious consideration by employers and governments. We hope that the situation is resolved soon.
Shannon Pakura Lucy Sandford-Reed
ANZASW President ANZASW Chief Executive
027 631 2655 027 349 0190