Radical Social Work In Tumultuous Times: Fighting For Equality and Social Justice!

We are pleased to announce that booking is now open for our annual conference on the 6th April. This year’s conference is a one day affair, packed to the rafters with speakers of outstanding calibre representing local campaign groups, families and individuals working with social workers and professionals from across the social work world.

Book here!

The conference takes place against a backdrop of growing economic crisis, continuing austerity, Government meltdown over Brexit and the growth of right-wing populism and racism (in the UK and internationally). From Brazil to Hungary, right wing politicians are trying to push back gains made over generations for women’s, LGBT+, workers and indigenous rights.

But it’s not all gone their way. Over the last year we have witnessed the magnificent victory for women’s rights in 8th Amendment campaign in Ireland and the growth of the anti-austerity ‘yellow vest’ movement in France.

What has been the impact of austerity and cuts on children’s, adults’ or mental health services? In the face of managerialism, how do we retain our values? How do we counter the rise of racism and Islamophobia? What do we say to counter Transphobia? How do we support refugee rights? How can we support the struggles of Palestinians?

These and similar questions will be addressed at this year’s SWAN conference. To enrich the debate we have a fantastic list of speakers, including:

  • Gill Archer (Unison national officer)
  • Prof Brid Featherstone (Uni of Huddersfield)
  • Professor Dave Whyte (University of Liverpool)
  • Dr Dave Scott (Open University)
  • Nahella Ashraf (Stand Up To Racism)
  • Bob Findlay Williams (DPAC)

We also have sessions run by campaigning social work organisations like Social Work Without Borders (SWWB), UK/Pal Social Work Network, the Campaign Against Prison Expansion (CAPE), and In Defence of Youth Work (IDYW)

Book here!

To top it all off there will be a range of stalls from campaigning organisations and a bookshop selling radical books and merchandise.

The conference is exceptionally cheap, £15 for students and £20 for non-students (and we have 50 free places for refugees and service users).

The price even includes teas and coffees and a packed lunch.

If you would like one of the free places, please email

For the FULL SCHEDULE please click here.

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We want to develop a network of service users, practicitioners, academics and students to support radical and progressive social work. We need a social work that is ready to challenge oppressive practice, that means working collectively across the country and internationally to advance Social Work.