Professional Practice Update: Have Your Voice Heard and Other Announcements

The Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (the College) is pleased to share the following updates to support registrants in their practice.

Have your voice heard! Share your perspective through the ASWB Census

The Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB), the association that develops entry-to-practice exams for social workers and social service workers, is inviting College registrants to share their perspective through their census.

As mentioned in the March 1st eBulletin, feedback received will be used to build the blueprint for the next version of the social work exams and developing the new social service work exams. The College will be implementing the entry-to-practice exams requirement in 2027 with these exam versions.  

The census is available until the end of June. Complete the census here.

Important note: The ASWB is seeking feedback from social service workers even though they are referencing this initiative as the “Social Work Census.”  

We hope all College registrants will consider sharing their perspective.

For questions or comments about the census, contact the ASWB at

For inquiries about the College’s eventual implementation of entry-to-practice exams, contact the Communications Department at

New Guidelines on Privacy Laws regarding Intimate Partner Violence from the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario

The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario (IPC) recently released new guidelines to support professionals, including social workers and social service workers, in better understanding Ontario’s privacy laws when sharing personal information involving intimate partner violence (IPV). The resource, Sharing Information in Situations Involving Intimate Partner Violence: Guidance for Professionals was developed in collaboration with a number of interested parties, including College staff.

This guidance follows recommendations from a 2022 inquest by the Office of the Chief Coroner for Ontario into the tragic deaths of three women at the hands of their former partner. The inquest jury recommended that the IPC develop guidance to empower IPV professionals to make informed decisions about privacy, confidentiality, and public safety. 

College registrants are encouraged to review the guidance to enhance their understanding around sharing personal information as it relates to IPV.

Coming Soon: Consultation on Updates to the Practice Guidelines for Custody and Access Assessments

The Practice Guidelines for Custody and Access Assessments (Practice Guidelines), approved in 2009, require revisions to reflect current practice. Registrants have stated that the Practice Guidelines are outdated and lack sufficient guidance, particularly since Custody and Access Assessments are now referred to as Parenting Plan Assessments.

To address these issues, a consultant with expertise in conducting high-conflict parenting plan assessments following separation or divorce has been engaged to draft revisions to the Practice Guidelines. Updates to the Practice Guidelines will include the following practice considerations:

  • current legislation and practices;
  • gender-neutral and user-friendly language;
  • equity, diversity and inclusion principles and practices;
  • informed approaches to working in the context of intimate partner violence;
  • virtual practice considerations; and
  • ethical guidance for client contracts. 

The revised Practice Guidelines draft will be shared with College registrants for feedback in July. Registrants are encouraged to review the Practice Guidelines and provide feedback to help improve and strengthen this important practice resource. Additional updates will be made on this feedback before the Practice Guidelines are presented to Council for approval.

For questions regarding the upcoming consultation on the Practice Guidelines, contact the Professional Practice Department at