Celebrating Neuro-inclusive Social Work

A drawing of a pair of hands holding a rainbow coloured cloud with the words below: "Celebrating Neuro-inclusive Social Work"

Neurodiversity Pledge for Social Work Employers

We pledge to raise awareness and acceptance of neurodiversity among our workforce through a focus on promoting appropriate training and delivering opportunities for knowledge development. We will create a culture of appreciation, celebration and belonging and make sustainable changes to ensure the workplace is neuro-inclusive.

The pledge has been created by a group of neurodivergent social workers with the backing of the Social Workers Union (SWU). Its authors hope the pledge will encourage employers to recognise the contribution neurodivergent social workers bring to their roles and commit to act towards a neuro-inclusive workplace.

Deb Solomon, a social worker from Derbyshire, is among the leaders of the campaign and said, “Our pledge will give employers of social workers an opportunity to promote acceptance and understanding of neurodiversity among all members of staff. We will also expect signatories of the pledge to create a neuro-inclusive culture of appreciation, celebration and belonging in their organisations.”

John McGowan, General Secretary of the Social Workers Union, said, “By asking employers to sign up to a pledge and evidence their inclusive culture, we will be able to share examples of good practice across the social work profession. SWU has been delighted to support this group and we’re honoured to host the pledge on our website.”

Jenni Guthrie, Principle Curriculum Lead at Frontline, said, “We need to challenge the stigma around neurodiversity and celebrate the numerous skills neurodiverse individuals can bring to the social work profession. But a first step to doing this is to ensure that employers become more neuro-inclusive. It has never been more important to value every member of staff and our workplaces should be psychologically safe spaces for neurodivergent social workers to be themselves.”

David Grimm, a social work student from Glasgow, added, “By working to create a neuro inclusive environment, social work employers and educators across the country will act as a beacon of hope and empowerment that welcomes more neurodiverse workers.”

Pledge Criteria

Each organisation that signs the pledge must:

  • Identify a minimum of two named individuals who will support the pledge within the organisation. One must be a strategic lead, one must be a neurodivergent social worker.
  • Commit to maintain a “champion” role.
  • Provide evidence of commitment to the pledge including evaluation of impact.

What actions can organisations take?

Pledge Form

Template email – Asking an employer to take the pledge

Examples of what could be included in a pledge

Overview of Neurotypes

About the Neurodigervent Social Workers Special Interest Group

Contact us

If you have any queries about the pledge, support or signposting to resources, please contact the Neurodivergent Social Workers Campaign Team at: NSWcampaign2024@gmail.com