“The responsibility of being a safety net cannot just rest on social services alone but needs commitment and resources from other authorities and organisations as well”

Meet Graham Owen, one of ESN Board members and members of the Board of The Association of Directors of Social Services in Sweden (FSS). FSS organises board meetings regularly to actively consult with other national authorities, advise to proposed changes in national legislation and to ensure that the public debate in Sweden pays attention to the voice of social services professionals.

In his role as a board member, he organises working groups on specific areas of work. Graham explains that they are currently focusing on three themes: 1. Social sustainability and inclusion, 2. Legislation, regulation, and implementation, 3. Good living conditions and preventive work for children, young people, and the elderly.

FSS was recently engaged in proposing new legislation which aimed to produce modern regulations on preventive work, accessibility of social services, and ensuring that services are based on evidence and best practice. FSS submitted its official response in February 2021.

“Social services cannot take the responsibility alone to provide early intervention and preventive measures”, says Graham. For the full delivery of social services, he highlighted that “we call for other players to join us”.

We asked Graham how ESN has supported him and FSS in learning from others, and this was his answer:

“Thanks to ESN, I have realised the benefit of working together towards the delivery of social services. I look forward to our close cooperation in the future.”