The Department of Community Development (DCD) in Abu Dhabi has affirmed that it is now mandatory for all professionals providing social care services to obtain the department's license to practice social care professions in the Emirate, prior to September 2nd. Failure to obtain the license within the specified deadline, Administrative penalties will be imposed in line with the law establishing the department.
In this regard, H.E. Eng. Hamad Ali Al Dhaheri, Undersecretary of Department of Community Development (DCD), said, “This step is extremely important in facilitating and easing the work mechanisms, and at the same time ensuring the provision of high-quality social services to the Abu Dhabi community according to the relevant international quality standards. This, in turn, guarantees to enhance the efficiency and growth of the social sector in the Emirate, in line with the plan to support social work and motivate the role of social institutions and companies in the process of social development in Abu Dhabi, while at the same time working in an integrated and well-controlled system that ensures that all individuals and segments of society have access to social services that meet their needs, and provide them with a dignified life."
Al Dhaheri added that the current period is a grace period to reconcile the conditions of workers in the field of social care, with the mandatory submission of specific requirements in terms of educational qualifications and practical experiences, as well as the ability to pass licensing tests for each category of professions, based on the Controls and Procedures Manual, and the licensing standards for social care professionals, which were published on the Department, before they are granted approval to apply for individual licensing, depending on the professional's ability to meet the approved requirements and conditions.
By setting a deadline for workers to legalize their status, the department seeks to enable social service providers to carry out their activities in an orderly and legal manner, by submitting applications for a license for “social care professionals” available on the Department of Community Development’s website and the “Tamm” government services platform, which includes Licensing services for five professions: Psychologist (non-clinical), Applied Behavior Analyst, Psychotherapist, Social Worker, and Counselors.
The department had previously issued a decision regarding the regularization of conditions for professionals working in the provision of social care services, and it was decided to set this deadline in line with the regulations approved by the department, at one year from the date of announcing the start of the license, provided that the period ends on the second of September of 2021.
H.E. Hamad Nakhirat Al Ameri, Director General of Dar Zayed for Family Care (DZFC) said, by the grace of God and the support of the wise leadership to improve social services, the Department of Community Development directs its full attention to social work and guides it towards serving the community according to the best international practices in terms of distinction and effectiveness, provided by qualified professionals with extensive experience in the field of social service.AlAmeri also said that the Zayed House for Family Care has urged its cadres to obtain professional licenses for all social workers, while the remaining professions are being licensed, to ensure that social services are provided in accordance with the best standards and practices, to serve those without family care.
H.E. Abdullah Abdulalee Al Humaidan, Secretary General, of Zayed Higher Organization for People of Determination (ZHO), praised the step taken by the Department of Community Development to launch a licensing service for social care professionals, in its capacity as the organizer of the social sector in Abu Dhabi, to enable the relevant social care providers to obtain a license that enables them to provide high-quality services that are compatible with best standards, namely because such services are of great importance, especially for those working with people of determination to raise the quality of services provided to the target groups in a way that contributes to achieving happiness and well-being for members of society. He added that the Zayed Higher Organization for People of Determination is proud to contribute to this step to ensure the provision of these services according to the highest standards and practices implemented locally and globally.
AlHumaidan went on to say, that the licensing service for professionals specializing in the field of social care aims to improve and maximize the competencies in the concerned authorities, especially since all documents submitted by those wishing to obtain a license will be carefully studied and researched by specialized committees, and that practices will be directed to ensure they are in line with the best ethical standards, and in line with modern scientific practices in the social field.
H.E. Dr. Nidal Al Tunaiji, Director General of Zayed House for Islamic Culture (ZHIC), praised the efforts exerted by the Department of Community Development, namely the issuance of a decision to standardize conditions for professionals working in the provision of social care services, and in turn, enhancing the vision of the department that aims to promote and ensure a decent life for all members of society, and contribute to empowering Social Service providers to carry out their activities in an organized and legal manner.
AlTunaiji also stressed that the Zayed House for Islamic Culture will be among the first institutions to obtain licenses for its employees who are providing social care services to new converts and those interested in Islamic culture, in line with the decisions of the organizational department, to provide high-quality services through qualified and licensed professionals, with the aim of protecting Society from wrong practices, and providing it with licensed social services that rise to the highest international levels of quality for Abu Dhabi society.
She added that the success of implementing this decision is through the cooperation of all social and governmental sector agencies providing social care services, which contributes to facilitating and expediting the work processes, and will result in all individuals and segments of society obtaining social services that meet their needs, and provide them with a decent life within a unified and systematic process.
For her part, H.E. Maryam Mohammed Al Rumaithi, Director General of Family Development Foundation (FDF), confirmed that we, as partners in the social sector system, care about people and the quality of their lives, to guarantee a decent life for individuals, citizens, and residents, and we are working with the Department of Community Development to achieve the highest levels of quality in the services provided to all individuals by competent, qualified, and licensed professionals because we all believe in the importance of providing the best social service.
AlRumaithi called on all social workers and those wishing to work as social professionals to move forward with the process to obtain a "social care professionals" license, since this professional licensing process is in accordance with international quality standards, and will contribute to protecting our society from wrong practices and will serve to promote ethical practices by competent professionals. It will also guarantee the provision of licensed social services to the communities in Abu Dhabi, according to the highest international levels of quality.
H.E Sarah Ibrahim Shuhail, Director General of Abu Dhabi Shelters for Victims of Human Trafficking (Ewa'a) said, “The licensing service for professionals working in the field of social care is a proactive step that is based on international standards of quality to serve the education and expertise necessary for professionals to ensure they are efficient and prominent, whilst helping individuals deal with their psychological, emotional and behavioral problems.
Shuhail added, "We will work together to promote safe professional practices, reinforced with ethical behavior, and at the same time enhance the quality of services to protect the beneficiaries of these professions, build capabilities and skills, enhance the role of the professionals, and adhere to the rules of professional conduct, instead of leaving the field to professionals who do not have the required scientific qualifications and thus practice the profession under different job titles. Ultimately, and for the sake of public interest, these professions must be legalized and improved, and licensing is one of the means to achieve this.”
On his part, H.E. Abdullah Humaid Al Ameri, Acting Director General of Abu Dhabi Social Support Authority (ADSSA), acknowledged that organizing the social sector, in line with the highest international levels of quality, requires the provision of social care services that are provided according to the best practices, that enhance the quality of life in the society of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, and in a manner that meets the needs of all its members and provides them with a dignified. Thus, licensing "social care professionals" is a necessary step to raise professional competencies in the social sector and build their capabilities in the field of social care.
It is worth noting that the social welfare services are provided in Abu Dhabi through a group of bodies in the social and governmental sector, such as the Abu Dhabi Authority for Social Support, the Zayed Higher Organization for People of Determination, the Family Development Foundation, the Social Welfare and Minors Affairs Foundation, Zayed House for Islamic Culture, and Zayed House for Family Care, and the Abu Dhabi Center for Shelter and Humanitarian Care, in addition to the government agencies represented by the General Command of Abu Dhabi Police and the Judicial Department, and the Department calls upon those concerned to refer to the licensing page for social care professionals through the department's website via the following link: