Decision Session – Executive Member for Culture, Leisure and Communities


2 February 2021

Report of the Assistant Director (Communities & Culture)


Working with York’s Minority Communities


1.        This report presents progress during the first year of the MYnority York project.


2.        The Executive Member is asked to:

·        Note progress with the project so far

·        Note the issues raised in the attached report

·        Agree future priorities set out in paragraph 7 and following


3.        Government has provided local councils with various funding amounts under Section 31 of the Local Government Act 2003, starting in 2018/19, in order to enhance their capacity and capability to aid Brexit preparations.  Specific purposes for the use of this funding has included strengthening preparations and supporting communities and, in particular, helping vulnerable people apply to the EU Settlement Scheme.

4.        The EU Settlement Scheme allows EU citizens and their family members who were resident in the UK on 31 December 2020, to get the settled status they need to continue to live, work and study in the UK by 30 June 2021. This status means they will continue to be eligible for public services, such as healthcare and schools, as well as public funds and pensions. They will also be eligible for British citizenship, if they meet the requirements and want to apply.

5.        It was recognized that local authorities have a significant role in supporting individuals as major providers of information affecting people’s everyday lives and often being the first point of contact for a diverse range of people on many important issues.  The council is well placed, by virtue of its strong networks, to support vulnerable or at-risk EU citizens by raising awareness and providing information, as well as signposting them to the appropriate support services to meet their needs.

6.        In York, some funding was used to employ an additional Community Involvement Officer to undertake the necessary work for a period of two years.   The officer took up post in December 2019.  Their first annual report is attached at Annex 1.

Future priorities

7.        It is proposed that future priorities for the project will be guided by the government guidance for post-Brexit work:

·        Enabling people to recognise and value the things that bind places and people together through celebrating the neighbourhoods we live and work in

·        Ensuring that community voices are heard and valued, so people feel they have a say over the decisions that matter most to them

8.        Engagement will take place with relevant representative York groups and organisations to consider how this work might best be taken forward.

Options and analysis

9.        It is open to the Executive Member to comment on the report and to agree future priorities or to suggest alternative ones.  The approach outlined is recommended with a view to recognising that community members are experts in their own lives and communities, valuing their knowledge and empowering them to define the issues to be tackled and the actions to be taken.  The aim must be to increase community members’ capacity to bring about change neighbourhood / community level.


10.    Finance:  Council, on 17 July 2019 allocated £100k from a total grant to York of £210k for the purposes of developing connections with communities most impacted by EU exit to better meet their needs.

11.    There are no additional Legal, HR, IT, Crime and Disorder or other implications arising directly from this report.

Council Plan

12.    This initiative supports many of the aims of the Council Plan and especially Good Health and Wellbeing and Safe Communities for all.

Risk Management

13.    In compliance with the Council’s risk management strategy the main risks that have been identified in this report are those which could lead to the inability to meet business objectives and failure to meet stakeholders’ expectations, which could in turn damage the Council’s image and reputation.  Measured in terms of impact and likelihood, the risk score has been assessed at “Low”.  This means that the risk level is acceptable but that regular monitoring of progress against delivery of ward schemes will be required.

Contact Details


Chief Officer responsible for the report:

Bianca Vartic

Community Involvement Officer

Charlie Croft

Assistant Director (Communities and Culture)


Amanda Hatton

Corporate Director of People

Report Approved



Wards Affected: 



For further information please contact the author of the report



Annex 1:  Annual report of the Community Involvement Officer (Minority Communities)