This article investigates how newspapers in the Republic of Ireland are delivering 'social work news' during a period of professional flux and evolving economic crisis.Findings: Many citizens in the Republic are currently experiencing serious economic hardship partly related to the global recession. It is important to understand the shape which the crisis is taking and to try to ascertain how this is impacting on social work. The article refers to an unpublished study of newspaper coverage of social work between January 2006 and January 2008. In this context, in the second part of discussion, particular attention will be devoted to the interventions of The Irish Times columnist, John Waters. Also, to accounts of 'high profile cases', particularly those appearing to highlight the urgent need to establish a national emergency or 'out-of-hours' social work service. Here, the work of the social affairs correspondent, Carl O'Brien, will be discussed.Applications: Social workers and social work academics need to strive to understand, and politically situate, newspaper accounts of social work and related forms of activity. Moreover, social workers should seek to intervene and shape newspaper accounts of their work. The article suggests that a recent report produced in England may aid social workers deliberations and actions in this respect (Social Work Task Force, 2009).