APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Members of this Group are asked to consider if they have an interest in any of the matters on the Agenda and if so to formally declare that interest.
Councillor J Walker declared a prejudicial interest in Minute CS.06
below, Troubled Families Update, as the Deputy Cabinet Member
for Communities. Councillor Walker left the meeting during
consideration of this item as the issue is an area of policy that falls
within his portfolio area.
A representative from Children’s Services will report at the meeting.
The Interim Executive Director of Children’s Services presented a report setting out the findings of a recent focussed visit to Children’s Services. The visit had taken place on 25 and 26 July 2018.
EXCLUSION OF PRESS AND PUBLIC
To consider passing the appropriate resolution under Section 100 (A)(4), Schedule 12(A) of the Local Government Act 1972, that the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the reason that the following business involves the disclosure of exempt information as detailed against the item.
Bart Popelier will report at the meeting. Report attached.
Bart Popelier gave a presentation setting out Children’s Social Care Performance in respect of the key performance indicators for children’s safeguarding. Performance information was set out in respect of the following indicators:
· Number of Contacts
· Number of Referrals
· Number of Repeat Referrals
· Number of S47 Enquiries
· Children in Need
· Child Protection
· Public Law Outline
· Edge of care – Start of Care
· Children with Disabilities
Questions were asked and responses given in respect of the presentation, however a number of causes for concern remained for the Group, which can be summarised as follows:
· Whilst acknowledging that a number of new systems had been introduced and would take time to bed-in, the Group had serious concerns over a lack of improvement in terms of performance across the indicators. Members felt that they were receiving similar responses to those received 12 months ago.
· IT systems were not as advanced as they could be, resulting in staff not being able to work efficiently. The Group felt that improved technology and agile working would free up staff to make more efficient use of their time and produce improved quality in their work.
· With regard to recruitment and retention, the Group expressed concerns in relation to workloads and case load numbers. Members highlighted the correlation between staff turnover and performance as a result of cases having to be re-allocated. Issues were also raised about the use of agency staff.
· Concerns were expressed in respect of relatively high levels of sickness, with much of the long term sickness being stress related. The Group highlighted the issue of capacity and workloads as potential contributory factors.
· In respect of children in need, the Group expressed serious concerns about children not being seen.
It was agreed:
That the Chair of this Group, meet with the Interim Assistant Director (Social Care & Safeguarding), with a view to raising the issues above in advance of a formal response to the next meeting.
TROUBLED FAMILIES UPDATE
Ahmed Ajmi will provide members with an overview of the Troubled Families programme. Report attached.
A report was submitted form the Interim Executive Director for Communities and Wellbeing outlining how the Council safeguard the most vulnerable families in Bury, an overview of the programme, the successes of interventions and how residents are safeguarded.
Bury Council’s response to the programme has been the SCIL (Supporting Communities and Improving Lives) team. The team comprises of Family Co-ordinators and a member of staff from DWP. There are two analysts that also provide data support for submissions to central government and also the GMCA.
Greater Manchester, on behalf of the 10 districts, has signed up to the Troubled Families 2 (TF2) programme and has committed to improve the lives of 27,200 families over the next 5 years. Bury’s contribution is 1297 families.
Troubled Families is at Greater Manchester (GM) level, part of a wider package of reforms (Public Sector Reform) to help individuals and families. This includes supporting 50,000 people into employment, reducing reoffending, implementing the Early Years New Delivery Model and greater integration of service provision through Place Based Integration.
The report set out information in respect of numbers on the programme; actions undertaken and risks within the programme. Ahmed Ajmi, Projects Officer, attended the meeting and briefed the Group on a number of positive interventions which highlighted how well Bury had performed to date, which was backed up by positive feedback comments from partners. Included within the report were a number of case studies setting out the issues faced by families and the outcomes achieved.
In response to a question from the Chair, Ahmed undertook to provide the number of re-referrals to the programme from phase 1.
With regard to the voice of the child, Ahmed explained about the tools and initiatives in place to ensure this is captured. An undertaking was given to provide copies of the feelings wheel toolkit.
During discussion of this item, Members of the Group acknowledged the good work being undertaken in respect of the Programme.
It was agreed:
The an update on the programme be provided to this Group in 12 months time.
DATE OF FUTURE MEETINGS
Tuesday 8th January 2019
Tuesday 2nd April 2019
It was agreed:
That the next meeting of the Group be held on 8 January 2019,
to consider the following items:
· Performance Report Response - Interim Assistant
Director (Social Care & Safeguarding) to be invited.
· Leaving Care Service
· Healthy Young Minds