Fifty years ago this month I started as a child care officer with a local authority.

Its outstanding chief officer earned no more than three times the salary of ordinary social workers.

David Crawford, head of Glasgow's social work department, is leaving his £120,000 a year post with a lump sum of £130,000 and a huge pension ("Massive payoff for council's social work boss", The Herald, August 17).

He may well have been an excellent leader but the fact is that top social service posts are now the means of personal enrichment at a time when many front-line staff are on low incomes.

Given that he is really concerned about poverty and inequality, I hope he will attend the annual meeting, next April, of the Social Work Action Network (SWAN). This grassroots organisation will debate how social work and other social services can counter the huge cuts being imposed on them.

Like many voluntary bodies, SWAN struggles financially with an income not a fraction of David Crawford's payoff.

Bob Holman,

76, Balgonie Road,