Under the Social Work and Social Service Work Act, the College is authorized to prosecute individuals who illegally use any of the College’s protected titles or who represent or hold out that they are a social worker or a social service worker. When the College becomes aware that such individuals may be practising illegally, it will investigate the matter and may take a number of actions including:

  • Sending the individual a cease and desist letter demanding that the individual cease the unauthorized activity and/or the illegal use of the title.
  • Asking that the individual sign an undertaking that they will cease the unauthorized activity.
  • Initiating court proceedings. The College has the authority to seek injunctions in Superior Court or to prosecute the individual in provincial offences court.

Note: The College has generally been successful in addressing title protection concerns by way of a cease and desist letter.

If you are aware of any individual who is illegally using a protected title and/or holding themselves out as a social worker or a social service worker, you may report this information to the College at titleprotection@ocswssw.org.

Please be advised that due to privacy requirements, the College may not be able to share with you how it will address the unauthorized activity and may only contact you further if it requires additional information.

Click here to download the College’s title protection fact sheet.