Association calls for social workers’ support for victims of flood, disaster
The Association of Medical Social Workers of Nigeria (AMSWON) has called for the presence of social workers in Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camp to give psychosocial care to victims of flood and disasters.
Mr Abubakar Bichi, National President of the association made this known in Enugu on Wednesday at a two-day media dialogue on Social Work Professionalisation Bill.
Bichi noted that the government cannot do it alone by providing adequate care to victims of flood and disasters.
He added that social workers was important in addressing the problems of the traumatised victims at the IDP camps.
According to him, it is high time we imitate international best practices on how they care for their victims of war, floor and natural disaster.
“The social workers starts where others stops. Social workers should be seen everywhere where other cannot go.
” Medical laboratory scientists are limited to laboratory investigations but social workers are everywhere, they attend to crash victims, emergency cases, indigent patients, psychosocial counselling and the rest.
” Victims of war, crisis ans natural disaster like flood are supposed to have social workers to give them psychosocial care because they are traumatised. ”
He, therefore, added that it was worrisome to find out that a profession practiced for more than two decades have no enabling law backing its operations.
Bichi said the media dialogue was apt as the country was presently faced with a lot of crisis which needed the the presence of social workers to help calm the problems emanating from crisis.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that UNICEF in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development and Nigeria Association of Social Workers introduced a bill for the establishment of Nigeria Council for Social Work to National Assembly in 2015.
The bill raised at the senate by the then senate leader, Senator Ali Ndume passed through the first reading but still awaiting further legislative action.
The bill, however, suffered setbacks as President Muhammadu Buhari withheld assent to the bill and returned it to the National Assembly for further clarification on the scope of social work in Nigeria.
The Stakeholders, however, have worked on the gray areas President Buhari rejected and submitted to the National Assembly awaiting fresh hearing.