Abu Dhabi: Social care practitioners who have not obtained the required licences will be penalised from September 2 onwards, the Department of Community Development (DCD) in Abu Dhabi has said.
The Department, which regulates Abu Dhabi’s social sector, is accepting applications for licences from social care professionals who wish to validate their work status.
“The DCD urges all professionals to expedite the submission of their applications and legalise their working status now. The licensing process includes different stages that may take three months or more to complete, depending on the requirements to be fulfilled based on the type of social care activities they practise. This move will ensure that only licensed social care professionals are providing services to the Abu Dhabi community based on the highest global quality standards,” said Mubarak Al Ameri, acting executive director of licensing and social control at the DCD.
The licensing requirement applies to five categories of professionals: Non-clinical psychologists, applied behaviour analysts, psychotherapists, social workers and counsellors.
Al Ameri explained that the approval process for these professionals can include proficiency tests, verification of the submitted documents and other requirements mentioned in the Regulations and Procedures Manual. Professionals must also meet education and expertise criteria specified by the DCD.
Issued licenses will be valid for two years and will be renewable for a similar period, subject to licence renewal and continuing professional education (CPE) requirements.
“Allowing social care professionals to reconcile their working status is in line with the DCD’s relentless efforts to improve the quality of social services in Abu Dhabi. It also ensures that all segments of society receive the best social services that meet their needs and aspirations and are offered by qualified and licensed professionals. This step is also part of its role to organise the social sector in Abu Dhabi and enforce the set policies, laws and strategies that aim to enhance the standard of living and quality of life in the emirate,” Al Ameri said.
The DCD launched the Social Care Professionals licensing service in Abu Dhabi in 2020. The service is available through the Abu Dhabi Government Services Ecosystem ‘Tamm,’ which enables social service providers to obtain the required licences to practise their profession in the emirate.
The DCD also called on all its partners in the government and social sectors to urge social care providers in Abu Dhabi to start applying for licences.