This chapter is concerned with understanding social workers' attitudes and actions in relation to the poverty of social service users. The findings are based on two participant observation studies - nine months with the Silverton social work team and five months with the City team. The first part of the chapter introduces a social psychological and social constructionist model to understand the interactions in the fieldwork. The second part of the chapter reviews previous research findings and compares them with this study. The third part of the chapter analyses the research findings in three different areas concerned with the relationship between social work and poverty - section 17 money, 'deserving' and 'undeserving' poor; and finally welfare benefits. A comparatively small number of fieldwork examples are given and analysed which are representative of a much greater number. After thirteen months field observation the amount of data that could have been included was enormous.