Social workers in the UK are being registered for the first time in a drive for higher standards of care and increased protection of the public.
A register of the 1.2 million strong social care workforce is being launched today, which should make it easier for employers to ensure only suitable people are being used.
The move is partly designed to help HR departments in the sector monitor training and standards of behaviour for staff working with vulnerable people.
All staff on the register will sign up to a code of practice which, if breeched, could lead to their removal, and eligibility to work in the sector.
All social care workers in the public, private and voluntary sector must join the register, which costs £30.
The General Social Care Council will start the process via the major employers and expect to process around 5,000 applications a month for the next two years.