Agenda and draft minutes
Venue: Cabinet Room 'B' - The Diamond Jubilee Room, County Hall, Preston
Contact: Joanne Mansfield Tel: 01772 534284, Email: email@example.com
Apologies for Absence
No apologies for absence were received.
Disclosure of Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Interests
Members are asked to consider any Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Interests they may have to disclose to the meeting in relation to matters under consideration on the Agenda.
No pecuniary or non-pecuniary interests were disclosed.
Resolved: That the minutes of the meeting held on the 12th September 2017 be confirmed and signed by the Chair.
A report was presented by Sarah Jenkins, Head of Service – Customer Access providing an update on the operation and performance of the Customer Access Service.
The Customer Access Service (CAS) was the first point of contact for 60% of all incoming telephony and email enquiries to Lancashire County Council. The strategic plan had been for additional services to be delivered by the CAS, in order to better serve the citizens of Lancashire, whilst improving costs and efficiency. Within the CAS is the dedicated Social Care Centre for Adult's and Children's Social Care, and the Customer Contact Centre delivering 26 services including Highways, Ask HR, Libraries, Blue Badge, Registration, Crisis Support, Waste and Welfare Rights.
The Committee noted that calls into Adults and Children's Social Care had reduced, as a result of safer, more effective referral pathways. The impact to Adults social care had been influenced by the Newton's programme of pathway to independence. Similarly, with Children's social care, a change of process had been made at the front door, reducing the need for professionals to make repeat calls, by directing the contact to the most appropriate team at the first point of contact.
In relation to the Blue Badge Scheme, there had been improvements in application processing times and waiting times; lots of calls had been received in relation to eligibility and renewal. It was reported that the main reason for a Blue Badge being declined was that the applicant was not in receipt of the correct benefits and that, in these cases, once this had been rectified, the refusal would be look at again, resulting in the badge being awarded for applicants meeting the eligibility criteria. This meant that some people would have been included in the figures for both 'applications declined' and 'badges awarded'. The County Council had increased the offering of free internet access with some assistance in Lancashire libraries, to help people with the application which had to be completed online. However, it should be noted that there was a separate fast track application process for terminally ill applicants.
Following on from the audit, an improvement plan was currently being work on to review some of our processes in relation to the Blue Badge scheme and particularly our correspondence to improve customer experience. The issues raised included quality of the letters sent out and the lack of detailed responses.
In response to a query, Sarah confirmed that an annual review was completed to check whether any Blue Badges were no longer required. The County Council were able to render them as 'not in use' but it was noted that this was a difficult process, especially in relation to applicants who had deceased. The Blue Badge Service was part of the 'Tell Us Once' scheme, which allowed people to report a death to most government organisations in one go.
The Committee noted that, as part of the development of the Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) model within Children's Social Care, changes had been made to ... view the full minutes text for item 4.
A report was presented by Paul Bond, Head of Legal and Democratic Services, providing an updated (Quarter 3) Risk and Opportunity Register for the Cabinet Committee to consider and comment upon.
The Committee noted that the updated Register would be presented to the Audit, Risk and Governance Committee on 29th January 2018.
The Cabinet Committee noted the following key highlights for this quarter:
· There was one deletion to the register:
o CR28 – Risk of not fulfilling our duty in relation to Court of Protection applications. This had been deleted as Cabinet had approved a Prioritisation Tool which had reduced the risk score.
· Allowing for mitigating actions, the residual risk score for the other entries, as detailed in the report, remained at 12 or above, and therefore these issues remained on the register.
Due to a formatting error, the following entry had been omitted from the register:
o CO1 – Developing a new model for public service delivery in Lancashire.
It was confirmed that this would be added to the next quarterly update and would also be amended for the report to the Audit, Risk and Governance Committee meeting in January 2018.
Amanda Hatton confirmed that there would be an update for the next quarter on the recent Ofsted inspection for the SEND Service.
Resolved: That the Cabinet Committee note the updated Risk and Opportunity Register and the amendment to be made, prior to its consideration by the Audit, Risk and Governance Committee meeting in January 2018.
A report was presented on the Quarterly Corporate Performance Monitoring for Quarter 2 of 2017/18.
It was reported that the number of Children Looked After (CLA) in Lancashire continued to increase. There was a high number of CLA in the Preston area, however, the Committee noted that the rates at which children were becoming looked after in the North and East were reducing.
The Access to Resources Team were working closely with children's social care to ensure optimum placements were identified. It was reported that it was difficult to find placements for some children and that we were currently looking at ways to how best we could work with these young people. A report would be presented to Cabinet in March 2018 on this.
Data released by Ofsted in September 2017 showed that there were two primary schools and four secondary schools in Lancashire judged as inadequate. The Committee noted that significant intervention support had been put into these schools and that early in the New Year, a meeting would take place with the Schools Commissioner. We needed to look at how the warning system was used and this would be detailed on the next quarterly update. County Councillor Driver stated it may also be helpful for Committee to have an overview report on where Academy orders had been received.
Ofsted Post Inspection Update
Amanda Hatton gave a summary of the actions and activity that had been implemented to improve the quality of services that support and protect children and young people.
The Committee noted that next iteration of the Continuous Improvement Plan had been developed and was framed against the following three key areas:
· Reduce the need for social work and care intervention and ensure effective prevention is in place;
· Ensure social work and care intervention is effective and efficient – making the right plans for children, offering appropriate support and minimising drift and delay – purposeful practice;
· Supporting long lasting and sustainable outcomes – permanence.
A revised Sufficiency Strategy for 2017-2020 had been agreed by Cabinet in October 2017, which set out how the Council would ensure that all children looked after had the right placement, in the right place at the right time, and the expectations for how this demand would change in the future.
It was noted that, as part of the implementation of the Residential Strategy approved by Cabinet in June 2017, additional resources were put in place to prevent young people coming into care, and to offer more outreach support and develop an adolescent support unit.
It was reported that HR and Learning Development were currently looking at Social Worker career pathways. It was noted that a report on this was expected in the near future.
The Committee were informed that LINX, along with the Barnardo's Young Carers Service and Children and Young People's Participation in Lancashire, had been shortlisted for the CYP Now awards. LINX had also received a national award for their campaign for Care Leavers across Lancashire to be ... view the full minutes text for item 6.
An item of Urgent Business may only be considered under this heading where, by reason of special circumstances to be recorded in the minutes, the Chairman of the meeting is of the opinion that the item should be considered at the meeting as a matter of urgency. Wherever possible, the Chief Executive should be given advance warning of any Members' intention to raise a matter under this heading.
There were no items of urgent business.
Date of Next Meeting
The next meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Performance Improvement will be held on Tuesday 27th February 2018 at 2.00pm in Committee Room B – The Diamond Jubilee Room.
The next meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Performance Improvement would be held on Tuesday 27th February 2018 at 2.00pm in Committee Room B – The Diamond Jubilee Room, County Hall, Preston.