Trauma Responsive Social Work Services Partnership Delivery Group: terms of reference

Terms of reference for the Trauma Responsive Social Work Services Partnership Delivery Group.


The terms of reference are made in relation to the Partnership Delivery Group on trauma responsive social work services. This group has been established to agree a work plan and deliver on actions listed within the plan.

This requires all members and their organisations to commit to delivering on agreed actions and activities required to develop a trauma informed workforce and services, and related implementation support.


The primary role of the Partnership Delivery Group is to provide advice, inform, share and progress agreed actions in the work plan which aims to implement the national trauma training programme for social work services, to ensure Scotland’s social work services are trauma informed, and ultimately improves outcomes for people affected by trauma.

The group has a specific remit to:

  • provide feedback on the proposed actions related to workforce education, skills and training
  • provide advice, share information and inform activities to develop the national approach to implementation supports, as noted in the Trauma Responsive Social Work Services Work Plan
  • ensure there are active and continued mechanisms for collaboration and participation in the proposed plan with those with lived experience of trauma
  • ensure the proposed work makes a considerable contribution to Plan 21-24 - The Promise, specifically in relation to supporting the workforce
  • ensure that the work plan is actively monitored to review progress
  • to work collaboratively with others where barriers to implementation are identified, in efforts to overcome these


The group will be chaired by Iain Ramsay, Professional Social Work Adviser at the Scottish Government


  • Care Inspectorate
  • Community Justice Scotland
  • Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA)
  • Children and Young Peoples Centre for Justice
  • Higher Education Institutions Heads of Social Work representatives
  • Improvement Service
  • NHS Education for Scotland
  • Scottish Association of Social Work (SASW)
  • Scottish Government
  • Social Work Education Partnership
  • Social Work Scotland (SWS)
  • Social Work Scotland Workforce and Resources Committee Learning and Development Sub-group representatives
  • Scottish Social Services Council
  • Who Cares? Scotland

Membership of the Partnership Delivery group will be at the invitation of the Scottish Government.

Membership responsibilities

Members will demonstrate commitment to make a positive, practical, meaningful and lasting contribution to the work of the Partnership Delivery Group whilst working with members to drive action to develop a fully trauma-informed and responsive workforce across social work service providers in Scotland.

Members will communicate with and provide feedback from their organisations and ensure regular communication with the Partnership Delivery Group and other relevant stakeholders.

The group will decide delivery method of further meetings. The substitution of a deputy is acceptable on the understanding that the deputy will provide a report on the meeting to the substantive member and the group they represent. Members submitting apologies for meetings, and who are unable to send a deputy, should notify the secretariat in advance.

All members will make a full declaration of interests in writing to the group secretariat. Public confidence in decisions made by this Partnership Delivery Group depends on it being clearly understood that decisions are being taken in the public interest and not for any other reason. In deciding whether to declare an interest (financial or non-financial), the key test is whether a member of the public would reasonably regard that a particular interest could influence your discussion or decision-making in your role as a member of the Partnership Delivery Group. If a member is uncertain as to whether or not an interest should be declared, they should seek guidance from the secretariat in advance of attendance.

Leadership and links with other relevant activity

Meetings will be conducted by the Chair.

To ensure that the work of the Partnership Delivery Group is informed and effective at making links to other relevant areas of activity, the Secretariat will ensure appropriate communication and co-ordination with the wide range of other organisations, activities and Programme for Government commitments relevant to developing a trauma informed workforce.

This includes but is not limited to the:

  • National Trauma Training Programme
  • Advanced Practice Framework for Social Work
  • Collective Leadership Group (CLG) workforce development sub-group for Children and Families Services
  • National Child Protection Guidance Implementation Group
  • Children and Young People’s Taskforce on Mental Health
  • the GIRFEC Refresh
  • Chief Medical Officer’s Taskforce to improve services for victims of rape and sexual assault
  • Victims Taskforce
  • Ending Homelessness Together Action Plan
  • Suicide Prevention Action Plan
  • Equally Safe Delivery Plan
  • a renewed focus on prevention, early intervention and holistic family support
  • work streams relevant to delivery of the Promise and the National Care Service

Accountability and governance

The Partnership Delivery Group will report to the Social Work Education Partnership.

The group will also report progress and updates to the National Trauma Training Steering Group for strategic oversight.

The Terms of Reference and meeting notes will be published. The group retains an option to make other documentation and resources public where appropriate.

Frequency of meetings

The group will meet approximately every three months, however this frequency will be reviewed as we move through the process of implementation.

Extraordinary meetings may be convened for exceptional reasons.

The group will be operational until at least 31 March 2024 where the groups remit and function will be reviewed.


Secretariat support for the group will be provided by the Office of the Chief Social Work Adviser in Scottish Government.

These terms of reference will be updated as required going forward.

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