DoH Chief Social Work Officer

Part of: DoH management and structure

Office of Social Services (Northern Ireland)

Northern Ireland's Chief Social Services Officer As Chief Social Work Officer of Social Services, Sean Holland leads a team which supports Ministers, the Department of Health, other Government Departments and agencies working in the field of social care.

The OSS work with others to ensure that social work and social care services are responsive to the needs of the population in Northern Ireland and are of the highest standards in keeping with the resources available.


As well as responsibility for the OSS, Sean carries lead executive responsibility for family policy, child care policy, social services training policy and standards and the discharge of social services statutory functions.

He accounts directly for these responsibilities to Ministers (including the Children's Minister) and the DoH Departmental Board.

Additionally, the CSSO has responsibility to advise the Criminal Justice Directorate of the Northern Ireland Office (NIO) with regard to social care policy and other Government Departments as and when required.

Organisation of the OSS

The Chief Social Work Officer, is supported in the discharge of his DoH and NIO responsibilities by the Deputy Chief Social Work Officer and a team of Social Services Officers.

Deputy Chief Social Work Officer

Jackie McIlroy is the Deputy Chief Social Work Officer responsible for the day to day management of the Social Services Officers who provide professional advice and input to the formulation and implementation of the policies of the Government Departments in respect of Social Care Services and related social policy and professional practice matters.

Areas of responsibility within the OSS are:

Safeguarding Children:
Looked After Children
Sponsorship of The NISCC & Regulation of The Social Care Workforce
Community Care, Older People, & Carers
Mental Health, Dementia & Disability
PSS Training Policy

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