Tag Archives: privatisation

Police Privatisation Shortlist Announced

West Midlands and Surrey Police forces have announced the shortlist of Companies who will go forward to make an outline proposal under the Business Partnering privatisation programme. The Business Partnering programme is intended to privatise all services that ‘can be legally delegated to the private sector‘ and is being promoted by the Home Office.

Still in the bidding for the £1.5bn contract are the following groups of Companies:

· British Telecommunications, Reliance Secure Task Management and Vanguard Consulting

· Capita Business Services

· G4S Care & Justice Services

· Kellogg Brown & Root and IBM United Kingdom

· Logica UK, Amey Community and Northgate Information Solutions

· Serco, HP Enterprise Services, and Accenture

UNITE, the trade union, has published an expose of the shortlisted companies in the report ‘Tax avoidance, strike breaking and human rights abuse’. (PDF)

G4S has numerous contracts with the Home Office to detain and deport asylum seekers, there have been ‘over 700 complaints against G4S over the treatment of detainees of which 130 were upheld. There have been 48 assault complaints.

In 2010 G4S lost a Home Office forcible deportation contract after the death of an Angolan deportee, Jimmy Mubenga, while being restrained on a flight back home.

KBR is a US construction and defence, logistics and gas company which built Guantanamo Bay. KBR has made massive profits from US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan by providing logistical and infrastructural support to the US occupying forces.

According to the UNITE report more than 20 federal lawsuits naming KBR and seeking class-action status were filed in late 2008 and 2009 over the practice of operating “burn pits” at U.S. bases in both Iraq and Afghanistan and thus exposing soldiers to smoke containing dioxin, asbestos and other harmful substances.

The successful contractors for the BPP programme will have responsibility for “investigating crimes, detaining suspects, developing cases, responding to and investigating incidents, supporting victims and witnesses, managing high-risk individuals, patrolling neighbourhoods, managing intelligence, managing engagement with the public, as well as more traditional back-office functions, such as managing forensics, providing legal services, managing the vehicle fleet, finance and human resources.” (The Guardian 3rd March 2012)

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Planned Police Privatisation: A Void of Misinformation

Robocop leads 150 protesters from UNISON and Unite opposed to the privatisation of Police services outside Lloyd House on 24th May 2012

How to sell the £1.5bn privatisation of Police services to the public was the main subject of discussion by members of West Midlands Police Authority when they met yesterday. Chris Sims, the Chief Constable said ‘when we start to talk about the offer we will excite the public, what fills the vacuum is negative views.’

This extensive and lucrative privatisation commenced in January when the OJEU notice was published and a bidders’ conference took place on 13th March. The Business Partnering for Police is a partnership with Surrey Police Authority and has the close involvement of the Home Office.

It was reported that the need to manage public criticism of the privatisation proposals was discussed at the Joint Police Board with Surrey Police Authority on Friday which agreed to commit to a joint public engagement strategy.

The meeting decided to extend the procurement timetable for the BPP to enable the new Police Commissioner who is to be elected in November to be involved in the award of the contract.

An extra Police Authority meeting is to take place on 12th July to discuss the business case for the BPP proposal and to look at the proposed financial savings.

The only note of opposition at the meeting was the formal receipt of UNISON’s petition opposing the privatisation. In a carefully managed meeting the 35 questions submitted by members of the public on the privatisation proposals were not allowed to be put to meeting.

Critical information was omitted from the agenda, including the names of the shortlisted bidders who were selected at the Joint Surrey and West Midlands Police Board last Friday. US military-strategic company KBR, a former subsidiary of Halliburton, is understood to have expressed an interest in the contract.

KBR has had extensive contracts to service the US military occupation of Iraq and was involved in the construction of the Detention centre at Guantanamo Bay. Investigations by the US Project on Government Oversight have revealed the widespread use of human trafficking and forced labour by KBR’s subcontractors involving migrant workers from Asia who have been taken to work in Iraq.

Follow these links for more information about KBR and the Police privatisation proposals

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No to Forced Academies in Birmingham

Michael Gove plans to seize around 30 Birmingham Primary schools and turn them into academies.

These schools are currently run by the Council. It means that the schools are democratically accountable to us and if the Councillors neglect our schools we can vote them out. Michael Gove wants to hand them over to unelected academy chains, many run by businessmen in the same way they run their businesses.

Despite the claims by the government and the media academies are not ‘proven to succeed’. The most recent GCSE results show that 27% have seen their results decline or remain the same.

Many academies have relied on NVQs and other exams which have been considered to be equivalent to several GCSEs to improve the position in the league tables. The government have now abolished these equivalents and academies have seen some dramatic falls. The ARK academy in Birmingham, St Albans, fell from 67% to 22% when equivalents were removed.

Henry Stewart, a school governor in Hackney, has gone through the figures and has a devastating critique of academies in this video.

We need to defend our schools and prevent them being turned into academies. All of our schools should be run for the local community in the interests of local children, not run by a Chief Executive on a Fat Cat salary from some office in Surrey or London.

Many of the schools that Michael Gove wants to seize are in areas with high unemployment and poverty. Our children don’t have the benefits that the millionaires in the government can give their children. But this doesn’t mean our schools are failing or underperforming.

We all want the best for our children and want them to get the best education they can. Of course some of our schools need improving. To do this they need investment. They need more teachers and teaching assistants. Their governors and headteachers need help in improving their schools. But how does Michael Gove describing some of our schools, and kids, as failing and threatening to sack headteachers, governors and staff really help?

In London, parents, staff and Governors in Downhills School are standing up to the bully boy tactics of Michael Gove. We can do the same.

In Birmingham parents and staff at Bournville school successfully prevent their school from becoming an academy.

We need many more campaigns like those seen at Downhills and Bournville. Now teachers in many of the schools that Gove is threatening are preparing to stand together to defend their schools. Parents and staff across Birmingham need to unite to save our local schools. Our schools and children are too important to leave in the hands of unelected, fat-cat privateers. Join the campaign to keep it that way!

The Anti Academies Alliance is producing a newspaper to distribute at the schools. If you are a parent or staff member at the school, or are able to help distribute newspapers and leaflets at a primary school in Birmingham, please contact the AAA on office@antiacademies.org.uk or 07528 201 697.

There is a public meeting opposing the forced academies in Northfield: Northfield Baptist Church, 789 Bristol Road South, Northfield, Birmingham – Thursday 10th May at 6pm

Update: 13 schools have balloted staff to take strike action over this issue

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Reports and Photos from Saturday’s Leisure Service Privatisation Activities

Saturday saw many places around Birmingham hold stalls and petition sessions against the planed privatisation of Birmingham’s Leisure Services.

Moseley Road Baths


Stall held by Friends of Moseley Road Baths

Sparkhill

Sparkhill and Springfield Against the Cuts was Joined by Campaign to Save Sparkhill Baths. Some Local people took away petition sheets. Thanks to Friends of Moseley Road Baths for supplying the leaflets. We left Slogan posters on the baths & on an Olympics Poster for passersby to see.

Northfield

There was overwhelming support for the protest and petitioning session outside Northfield Baths on Saturday morning, organised by Stirchley and Cotteridge against the Cuts. Passers-by and pool users were queueing up to sign and take our leaflet. They were made aware of the no-consultation plans to privatise all of Birmingham’s leisure services and how this could lead to higher prices, cuts in its personnel and a reduction of access. As an example of what is in store, Harbourne’s New Baths and Leisure Centre is run by D C Leisure Management (annual turnover of £95 million). Are they doing this out of sheer altruism, or is there something in it for them? And if the latter answer is yes, what right do they have to syphon off public money for their own profits? And will there not be pressure to increase profits and prices as time passes? And what about democratic control of such resources by the people who pay their taxes and pay to use the facility? What is the point of electing Councillors if they have no say over local resources?

It is clear from the response to our petitioning session that the Council will have a fight on its hand if it intends keeping on with this retrograde step. We will do everything in our power to stop it.

It would be good to hear that the Labour Party will immediately reverse such measures if and when it takes power in the Council in May. It would also be good to see the local Labour Party at our next protest.

As well as campaigning against this privatisation in Northfield, our leaflet also highlighted the funding crisis of the local CAB and the intention to close Millmead Children’s home in Bartley Green. The field of operations of Stirchley and Cotteridge against the Cuts seems to be widening ever further. It is looking like Northfield and Longbridge will soon need an anti-cuts group of its own.

Handsworth

Handsworth against the Cuts activists were busy petitioning at the Handsworth leisure centre on saturday 10th march and sunday 11th march.People -especially young people- were encouraged to write their own message to Birmingham city council, and we had a great response( the sunny weather helped).
Handsworth Against the Cuts also held a stall on Friday, you can read about it in this post.

More photos from the weekends activities are on our Facebook Page, and future events about leisure service privatisation or other anti-cuts and anti-austerity issues can be found on our upcoming events page.
If you want to get involved with this campaign, please contact your local group or email BirminghamAgainstTheCuts@Gmail.com

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Filed under Birmingham City Council, Handsworth Anti-Cuts Group, Sparkhill & Sparkbrook Against the Cuts, Stirchley and Cotteridge Against the Cuts

Handsworth Against the Cuts Hold Stall Against Leisure Centre Privatisation

Activists from Handsworth Against The Cuts (HATC) lobbied MP Khalid Mahmood’s constituency surgery about the the council’s attempt to privatise the leisure centres. Concern was expressed by the MP’s
representatives and also a willingness to have attend/ hold a public meeting. We were also told that the councillors in the ward were against the privatisation. Other HATC activists had attended a Handsworth community conference and had raised the issue there that morning as well, so the pressure is being applied.

On the same day a stall was done at the Leisure Centre, we now have 489 signatures opposing privatisation, not including the petitions that people have taken away to get friends, neighbours and family to sign. There is a great depth of feeling on the subject…

Saturday 10th March is a day of action on Leisure Centre privatisation with stalls being held around Birmingham – see here for details

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Filed under Birmingham City Council, Handsworth Anti-Cuts Group

Day of Action Over Leisure Services Privatisation

As we reported on Monday, Birmingham City Council have begun a process that could see a £200m outsourcing of leisure services to private, profit seeking, companies.

This affects people all over the city, and Handsworth Against the Cuts were out on Saturday, raising awareness and gathering signatures on a petition to keep these services in house.

Outsourcing and privatisation are all too often used as a way to cut costs at the expense of services or through changes to staff pay and conditions, rather than as a way to improve the services provided.
As the council seek to make £100m of additional cuts over the following year, we can be sure that this is being used as a way to cover some of that, or at least it will be if we let it.

On Saturday 10th March, Birmingham Against the Cuts will be co-ordinating local groups and individuals around the city to petition at leisure centres that are under threat.
As we receive confirmation of times, this list will be updated. If you live near one of these centres, or use it regularly, go and join them, or tell us that you will be there between certain times, and we will put that on this list and try to get people to join you.
A city-wide petition is being finalised, and will be available to download and print closer to the day, along with leaflets and posters.

— Alexander Stadium,
— Beeches Pool,
— Billesley Indoor Tennis Centre,
— Castle Vale Pool,
— Cocks Moor Wood Leisure Centre,
— Erdington Pool,
— Fox Hollies Leisure Centre,
— Handsworth Leisure Centre, 11am on Saturday 10th and Sunday 11th Handsworth Against the Cuts
— Harborne Pool and Fitness Centre,
— Kingstanding Leisure Centre,
— Linden Road Leisure Centre,
— Moseley Road Pool: 11am onwards, Friends of Moseley Road Baths
— Nechells Sports Centre,
— Newtown Pool,
— Northfield Leisure Centre 11am onwards, Stirchley and Cotteridge Against the Cuts
— Saltley Leisure Centre,
— Shard End Leisure Centre,
— Small Heath Leisure Centre,
— Shenley Court,
— Sparkhill Pool and Leisure Centre, 11am-1pm Sparkhill & Springfield Against the Cuts
— Stechford Cascades,
— Stockland Green Leisure Centre,
— Tiverton Road,
— Wyndley Leisure Centre.

Please note that this is not a complete list – the tender document says that these are included, but does not limit privatisation to just these facilities – so if your local centre is not listed here, do not think you are safe.

Email us at BirminghamAgainstTheCuts@Gmail.com or just turn up if your centre already has times listed.

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Filed under Birmingham City Council, Erdington Against the Cuts, Handsworth Anti-Cuts Group, Kings Heath & Moseley Against the Cuts, Sparkhill & Sparkbrook Against the Cuts, Stirchley and Cotteridge Against the Cuts, Stockland Green Against the Cuts

Birmingham City Council Plans to Sell Off Leisure Centres

A group of Handworth Against The Cuts activists did a stall and petition at Handsworth Leisure centre this Sat 25 th Feb. Well over 200 signatures were collected and people took away leaflets and petitions to distribute around their communities. There was anger, concern and astonishment about BCC’s secret plans to sell of all the Leisure Centre.

The petition can be signed inside the Leisure centre, children are encouraged to sign as well!. There is potentially a big campaign possible around this- the leisure centre and free activities are much used and much prized in the area. More campaign stalls and activities are being planned. All are welcome and encouraged to join in!
Contact NoCutsHandsworth@btinternet.com
—–

.Here is BCC’s application in the European Journal:

UK-Birmingham: sports facilities operation services
2012/S 24-039329
Contract notice
Services
Directive 2004/18/EC
Section I: Contracting authority
I.1)Name, addresses and contact point(s)
Birmingham City Council, Corporate Procurement Services
PO Box 10680, Lancaster Circus
Contact point(s): https://in-tendhost.co.uk/birminghamcc
For the attention of: Corporate Procurement Services
B4 7WB Birmingham
UNITED KINGDOM
Telephone: +44 1214648000
Fax: +44 1213037322
Internet address(es):
General address of the contracting authority: http://www.birmingham.gov.uk; http://www.finditbirmingham.gov.uk
Address of the buyer profile: https://in-tendhost.co.uk/birminghamcc
Electronic access to information: http://in-tendhost.co.uk/birminghamcc
Electronic submission of tenders and requests to participate: http://in-tendhost.co.uk/birminghamcc
Further information can be obtained from: The above mentioned contact point(s)
Specifications and additional documents (including documents for competitive dialogue and a dynamic purchasing system) can be obtained from: The above mentioned contact point(s)
Tenders or requests to participate must be sent to: The above mentioned contact point(s)
I.2)Type of the contracting authority
Regional or local authority
I.3)Main activity
General public services
I.4)Contract award on behalf of other contracting authorities
The contracting authority is purchasing on behalf of other contracting authorities: no
Section II: Object of the contract
II.1)Description
II.1.1)Title attributed to the contract by the contracting authority:
Sport and leisure facilities framework.
II.1.2)Type of contract and location of works, place of delivery or of performance
Services
Service category No 26: Recreational, cultural and sporting services
Main site or location of works, place of delivery or of performance: Birmingham UK.
NUTS code UKG31
II.1.3)Information about a public contract, a framework agreement or a dynamic purchasing system (DPS)
The notice involves the establishment of a framework agreement
II.1.4)Information on framework agreement
Framework agreement with several operators
maximum number of participants to the framework agreement envisaged: 4
Duration of the framework agreement
Duration in years: 4
Estimated total value of purchases for the entire duration of the framework agreement
Estimated value excluding VAT: 200 000 000,00 GBP
II.1.5)Short description of the contract or purchase(s)
Through the sport and leisure service Birmingham City Council strives to raise the quality of life and health of its citizens and to enhance its reputation as one of the UK’s leading sporting cities. We want to work with organisations that support the Council’s vision for an excellent leisure service. Birmingham City Council is undertaking a competitive dialogue process to identify organisations to be appointed to a framework agreement. The scope of this framework could comprise a mixture of the following provision in relation to any or all of the City’s leisure related facilities: design, build, repair, refurbish, finance, operate and maintain. All contracts will need to be awarded within the framework period of 4 years but contracts placed under the framework may have a duration of between 10 and 15 years or less where appropriate. The first contract to be awarded through this framework will be the design, build, operate and maintain contract in relation to Sparkhill Pool and Fitness Centre. Under this procurement organisations will be required to participate actively in the economic and social regeneration of the locality surrounding the place of delivery. Accordingly contract performance conditions may relate in particular to social and environmental considerations. TUPE may apply to staff engaged in services which are the subject of contracts awarded under this framework agreement. The Council’s leisure facilities which may be the subject of contracts awarded under the framework include, but are not limited to, the following:
— Alexander Stadium,
— Beeches Pool,
— Billesley Indoor Tennis Centre,
— Castle Vale Pool,
— Cocks Moor Wood Leisure Centre,
— Erdington Pool,
— Fox Hollies Leisure Centre,
— Handsworth Leisure Centre,
— Harborne Pool and Fitness Centre,
— Kingstanding Leisure Centre,
— Linden Road Leisure Centre,
— Moseley Road Pool,
— Nechells Sports Centre,
— Newtown Pool,
— Northfield Leisure Centre,
— Saltley Leisure Centre,
— Shard End Leisure Centre,
— Small Heath Leisure Centre,
— Shenley Court,
— Sparkhill Pool and Leisure Centre,
— Stechford Cascades,
— Stockland Green Leisure Centre,
— Tiverton Road,
— Wyndley Leisure Centre.
The estimated maximum total value of the framework is GBP 200 000 000 which includes the indicative value of contracts up to a maximum of 15 years. This estimate will be subject to the outcome of the competitive dialogue process. Birmingham City Council will be using its e-tendering system (In-tend) for the administration of this procurement process and providers must register with the system to be able to express an interest. The web address is https://in-tendhost.co.uk/birminghamcc.
Registration and use of In-tend is free and all correspondence for this procurement must be via the In-tend correspondence function. However, if you are unable to register with the website please either email us at cps@birmingham.gov.uk or call 01214648000.
II.1.6)Common procurement vocabulary (CPV)
92610000, 92620000
II.1.7)Information about Government Procurement Agreement (GPA)
The contract is covered by the Government Procurement Agreement (GPA): yes
II.1.8)Lots
This contract is divided into lots: no
II.1.9)Information about variants
Variants will be accepted: no
II.2)Quantity or scope of the contract
II.2.1)Total quantity or scope:
II.2.2)Information about options
II.2.3)Information about renewals
II.3)Duration of the contract or time limit for completion
Duration in months: 48 (from the award of the contract)
Section III: Legal, economic, financial and technical information
III.1)Conditions relating to the contract
III.1.1)Deposits and guarantees required:
The Contracting Authority reserves the right to require deposits, guarantees, bonds and/or other forms of appropriate security.
III.1.2)Main financing conditions and payment arrangements and/or reference to the relevant provisions governing them:
This will be included in the tender documents.
III.1.3)Legal form to be taken by the group of economic operators to whom the contract is to be awarded:
Joint and several liability.
No special legal form is required but in the case of group bidders the authority requires that a prime service provider assumes primary liability for the group and that each organisation in the group accepts joint and several liability.
III.1.4)Other particular conditions
The performance of the contract is subject to particular conditions: yes
Description of particular conditions: When executing the contract in the UK the successful tenderer will be required to comply with the recommendations of the code of practice for the elimination of Racial Discrimination and the promotion of Equality of Opportunity in employment published by the Commission for Racial Equality.
The successful tenderer will be required to participate actively in the service related economic, social and environmental regeneration of the locality of and surrounding the place of delivery for the procurement.
Accordingly, tender evaluation and contract performance conditions may relate in particular to social, economic and environmental considerations.
III.2)Conditions for participation
III.2.1)Personal situation of economic operators, including requirements relating to enrolment on professional or trade registers
Information and formalities necessary for evaluating if the requirements are met: As set out in the pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ).
III.2.2)Economic and financial ability
Information and formalities necessary for evaluating if the requirements are met: As set out in the pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ).
Minimum level(s) of standards possibly required: As set out in the pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ).
III.2.3)Technical capacity
Information and formalities necessary for evaluating if the requirements are met:
As set out in the pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ).
Minimum level(s) of standards possibly required:
As set out in the pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ).
III.2.4)Information about reserved contracts
III.3)Conditions specific to services contracts
III.3.1)Information about a particular profession
Execution of the service is reserved to a particular profession: no
III.3.2)Staff responsible for the execution of the service
Legal persons should indicate the names and professional qualifications of the staff responsible for the execution of the service: no
Section IV: Procedure
IV.1)Type of procedure
IV.1.1)Type of procedure
competitive dialogue
IV.1.2)Limitations on the number of operators who will be invited to tender or to participate
Envisaged number of operators: 10
Objective criteria for choosing the limited number of candidates: As detailed in the pre-qualification questionnaire.
IV.1.3)Reduction of the number of operators during the negotiation or dialogue
Recourse to staged procedure to gradually reduce the number of solutions to be discussed or tenders to be negotiated yes
IV.2)Award criteria
IV.2.1)Award criteria
The most economically advantageous tender in terms of the criteria stated in the specifications, in the invitation to tender or to negotiate or in the descriptive document
IV.2.2)Information about electronic auction
An electronic auction will be used: no
IV.3)Administrative information
IV.3.1)File reference number attributed by the contracting authority:
S0034
IV.3.2)Previous publication(s) concerning the same contract
no
IV.3.3)Conditions for obtaining specifications and additional documents or descriptive document
Time limit for receipt of requests for documents or for accessing documents: 12.3.2012 – 17:00
Payable documents: no
IV.3.4)Time limit for receipt of tenders or requests to participate
16.3.2012 – 12:00
IV.3.5)Date of dispatch of invitations to tender or to participate to selected candidates
IV.3.6)Language(s) in which tenders or requests to participate may be drawn up
English.
IV.3.7)Minimum time frame during which the tenderer must maintain the tender
IV.3.8)Conditions for opening tenders
Section VI: Complementary information
VI.1)Information about recurrence
This is a recurrent procurement: no
VI.2)Information about European Union funds
The contract is related to a project and/or programme financed by European Union funds: no
VI.3)Additional information
Organisations wishing to be considered for a tendering opportunity must express their interest on In-tend by no later than 5pm on 12.3.2012 and download the pre-qualification document. This must be completed and uploaded onto In-tend no later than 12 noon on 16.3.2012. The questionnaire provided by the City Council will ask suppliers / service providers to indicate their economic and financial standing, technical ability and appropriate skills, efficiency, experience, reliability and provide satisfactory policy and documentation for race relations, health and safety and sustainability. The information provided in response to this questionnaire will be used as part of a pre-tender evaluation in order to select a shortlist of potential suppliers / service providers to be invited to tender. Where consortia or.
Group of organisations wish to express an interest in this project, each organisation responsible for the provision of requirements will be expected to complete a questionnaire. This tender process will be conducted using BCC’s e-tendering system ‘in-tend’. The portal for this system is https://in-tendhost.co.uk/birminghamcc. Providers must register with the system in order to access documents. Registration and use is free.
VI.4)Procedures for appeal
VI.4.1)Body responsible for appeal procedures
VI.4.2)Lodging of appeals
VI.4.3)Service from which information about the lodging of appeals may be obtained
VI.5)Date of dispatch of this notice:
2.2.2012

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Filed under Birmingham City Council, Cuts, petition