On the Voluntary Children’s Services Trust and problems of being a Corporate parent 

Screen Shot 2016-07-27 at 12.46.44

The fault lines of the proposed ‘Voluntary Children’s Services Trust’ model and its relationship with the Local authority started to appear at the discussion at Cabinet meeting on Tuesday.

The report prepared by Deloitte setting out the case for change for moving some social work services into a Trust arrangement was accepted by Council’s Cabinet and received backing from the Conservative and Liberal Democrat Groups.

A set of organisational options for a Trust were identified by Deloitte and a further report will be made to Cabinet in September setting out the preferred shortlist of models. Cllr Brigid Jones, the responsible Cabinet member,  also said the Council would undertake a ‘market testing’ exercise over the summer to identify whether there were sufficient people of the right sort who could serve as Trustees on a future Trust Board.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Birmingham City Council, Uncategorized

On options for the “Voluntary Children’s services Trust’

Dear Cabinet member,

The future of social work with children and families in Birmingham

On Tuesday you will consider a report prepared by Deloitte on the Birmingham children’s services model which sets out 19 potential models for delivering children’s social care services and a framework of critical success factors which a model would need to meet. The Cabinet report recommends that these different delivery models are appraised by Deloitte over the summer and a report with preferred options should be presented to Cabinet in September.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Birmingham Against the Cuts asks Labour’s candidates for WMCA Mayor what they plan to do about the Combined Authority’s lack of democracy and public participation

Labour’s candidates for WMCA Mayor, Steve Bedser and Sion Simon, have now published their manifestos. Neither of them makes any mention at all of the glaring lack of democracy and public participation in the structures and processes of the Combined Authority that BATC has repeatedly criticised: Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

“The bottom line is that fewer health visitors will have less time to support young children!”

A cut in the total number of Health Visitors in Birmingham, leading to many young children and families being seen less frequently, is likely from September 2017 when the new Early Years service becomes operational. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

What should the Mayor for the West Midlands Combined Authority stand for?

  •  Economic growth for social needs and well-paid jobs, not just private profit
  • Improved public services, not more cuts
  • Democracy – public participation in decision-making, not top-down diktats

In May next year we will elect a Mayor for the WMCA. Candidates are already starting their campaigns.  The Mayor will have wide-ranging powers and responsibilities – in conjunction with the WMCA Board, local councils and business leaders in the Local Enterprise Partnerships – that will affect every citizen, family and community in the West Midlands. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

A matter of trust! – the ‘spinning off’ of Birmingham’s Children’s social care

Children’s services support the most vulnerable children in our society. They are in our care; we, the state, are their parents; and we are failing them. It is our duty to put this right; to say poorly performing local authorities: improve, or be taken over. We will not stand by while children are let down by inadequate social services. (my emphasis) (1)

David Cameron – the Prime Minister

Birmingham City Council recently announced it had commissioned Deloitte to draw up plans which could see Council run Children’s social care services being transferred to an independent Trust. The Trust announcement was made immediately prior to the screening of a critical Dispatches programme where an ‘undercover’ social worker filmed within the social care department at the end of May.

The Trust proposal was discussed at the full meeting of the Council which took place on 14th June 2016 where the Conservative group called for the resignation of Cllr Brigid Jones the lead Cabinet member for Children’s services.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Children’s services trusts – “They want to take that failed and untested approach and to apply it to our most vulnerable.”

On the 24th May 2016 Birmingham City Council announced that it is setting out its intention to move its Children’s social care services to a voluntary trust.

This is what Cllr Brigid Jones, the Cabinet member Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized