Tuesday, 17 November 2015

University of Strathclyde honours Alexis Jay for contribution to child protection

Written by The Editorial Team

A leading UK child protection expert has been awarded an honorary degree by the University of Strathclyde.

Alexis Jay OBE, independent chair of the Strathclyde-based Centre for
Excellence for Looked After Children in Scotland (CELCIS), received the
degree of Doctor of the University at a ceremony in the Barony Hall
this morning.

Ms Jay, previously Chief Social Work Adviser to the Scottish
Government, has more than 30 years’ experience of working in local
government with, and on behalf of, disadvantaged people and their
communities. She led the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual
Exploitation in Rotherham, authoring the resulting report published in
August 2014.

Ms Jay, already a Visiting Professor at Strathclyde, said: “I am
delighted to receive this recognition from the University, and look
forward to continuing to champion a challenging agenda to improve the
lives of looked-after children.

CELCIS Director Jennifer Davidson said: “Alexis demonstrated immense
courage and humanity in the way she conducted and reported on the
traumatic and brutal experiences of young people in Rotherham who
experienced child sexual exploitation.

“She is an influential and respected expert in the field of social
work and social policy throughout Scotland, the UK and Europe. Alexis is
passionately commitment to improving services for vulnerable people,
ensuring she is both ideally-placed to play a leading role with CELCIS
and a fitting recipient of her honorary degree.

“Strathclyde’s recognition of Alexis reinforces the University’s
strategic leadership in the area of children’s services improvement,
social justice and inequalities, and will draw further attention to the
need for the effective implementation of evidence-informed interventions
to protect children.”

In 2005, Ms Jay was invited by the then Scottish Executive to lead
the Social Work Inspection Agency (SWIA), a government organisation
scrutinising all aspects of social services provided by local

She served as Chief Executive and Chief Social Work Inspector until
the functions of SWIA and the Care Commission were taken over by the
Care Inspectorate in 2011. She then remained as Chief Social Work
Adviser until early 2013.

Ms Jay was previously President of ADSW (now Social Work Scotland),
and Director of Social Work and Housing in West Dunbartonshire Council
from 2000 to 2005. She was appointed an OBE in 2012 for services to
children and families, and took up her CELCIS post in 2013.

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