MASW & UNICEF urge Malaysia to prioritize the Social Work Profession Bill

Social workers are like the superheroes who help keep our society together!

KUALA LUMPUR, 3 October – As the Parliament of Malaysia sits for the third meeting next week, UNICEF and Malaysian Association of Social Workers (MASW) are calling on lawmakers to table the Social Work Profession Bill.

Why is this a big deal? Well, social workers are like the superheroes who help keep our society together. They protect children and families from bad stuff, fight for fairness, and help make sure nobody gets left behind. But they need some backup to do their job right, and that’s where the Social Work Profession Bill comes in.

Between 2020 and 2022, there were 18,750 cases of child abuse in Malaysia. Social workers play a crucial role in dealing with these issues, but they need proper training, resources, and support. Tabling and passing this Bill will show that Malaysia is serious about making our community better, just like the Government’s vision for Malaysia Madani.

The Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development has already taken steps in the right direction by setting up the Children’s Development Department and working on the Social Work Profession Bill. UNICEF and MASW are ready to help the government in empowering social workers to tackle social problems head-on.

Three key challenges

Social work is unique because it deals with real-life problems within our society. Social workers use their knowledge to help people navigate complex systems and provide care and support when it’s needed most. They’re like guardian angels for those in need.

But, here’s the problem:

  1. Social work isn’t officially recognized as a profession in Malaysia, unlike in some other countries.
  2. There aren’t enough social workers here. We have only one social worker for every 8,576 people, while other countries have way more.
  3. Many folks don’t even know what social workers do, thinking they only do charity work. This lack of understanding means their work often goes unnoticed and unsupported.

So, what’s the deal with the Social Work Profession Bill?

Win-Win for All

This Bill will make social work a legal and regulated profession in Malaysia. Why is that important? It will:

  • Set professional standards, so you know what to expect.
  • Help you identify qualified social workers who can do the job right.
  • Ensure social workers work ethically and safely.
  • Make sure social workers are well-trained and competent.
  • And it will recognize social work as an important profession, encouraging more people to join and stay in it.

By making social work a respected profession, we can have more social workers available for those who need them the most. When people get the help they need, our communities thrive, and our country prospers. It’s a win-win!

Heroes Among Us

UNICEF and MASW are running the “Heroes Among Us” campaign to shine a spotlight on the incredible work of social workers. We want to make sure every child and vulnerable person in Malaysia has access to qualified social workers when they need them.

So, jom join the campaign and show your support for these heroes among us and the Social Work Profession Bill. Social workers make sure nobody gets left behind, and it’s time we don’t leave them behind either.

Together, we can make Malaysia a better place for all!

That’s the scoop on the call to regulate the social work profession in Malaysia. Let’s make it happen!

READ >> Fact Sheet: The Case for the Social Work Profession Bill

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Bunny Wira

champion for children, hero in disguise. I love kangkung!
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