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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Clementhorpe Room, Priory Street, York

Contact: Jill Pickering  Democracy Officer

Items
No. Item

22.

Declarations of Interest

At this point Members are asked to declare any personal or prejudicial interests they may have in the business on this agenda.

Minutes:

Members were invited to declare at this point in the meeting any personal or prejudicial interests they might have in the business on the agenda.

 

Councillor Potter declared a personal non-prejudicial interest as the Older People’s Champion in relation to Agenda Item 6 Funding Requests 2007/08.

23.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 43 KB

To approve and sign the minutes of the last meeting of the Group held on 21 November 2007. An “easy read” version of these minutes is also attached for members’ consideration.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED:             That the minutes of the last meeting of the Social Inclusion Working Group held on 21 November 2007 be approved and signed by the Chair as a correct record and the ‘easy read’ version be noted.

24.

Public Participation

At this point in the meeting members of the public who have registered their wish to speak regarding an item on the agenda or an issue within the Groups remit can do so. Anyone who wishes to register or requires further information is requested to contact the Democracy Officer on the contact details listed at the foot of this agenda. The deadline for registering is Tuesday 15 January 2008 at 5.00pm.

Minutes:

It was reported that there had been no registrations to speak at the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme.

25.

Work Map - Feedback from Community Group representatives pdf icon PDF 78 KB

To consider the Groups Work Map together with feedback from community group representatives.

Minutes:

Consideration was given to a report which detailed the objectives of the Social Inclusion Working Group and the work areas covered by the Group in 2006/07 and 2007/08. The community group representatives had been requested to discuss the issues outlined in the report with their groups and feed any views back to the meeting.

 

RESOLVED:  That any comments on the report from the community groups be considered at the Social Inclusion Working Group Development Day to be held on Monday 25 February 2008.

 

REASON:                              To collect and note the views from community groups to inform the discussion at the SIWG Development Day in February.

26.

Funding Principles 2008/09 - Feedback from Community Group representatives pdf icon PDF 37 KB

This report asks for feedback from representatives on principles to be used when funding projects from community groups for discussion at the Social Inclusion Working Group Development Day in February 2008.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 Members considered a report, which outlined the objectives of the Social Inclusion Working Group, details of budgets together with funding principles for projects in 2008/09. This annex had been produced to assist community group representatives in offering feedback from their various groups.

 

RESOLVED:   i) That further consideration of the principles of SIWG funding be undertaken at the Social Inclusion Working Group Development Day to be held on 25 February 2008.

 

                       ii) That community group representatives undertake discussions with their groups on the principles and report back their views at the Development Day..

 

 

REASON:                  To collect and note views from community groups to inform the discussion at the SIWG Development Day in February.

27.

Funding Requests - 2007/08 pdf icon PDF 48 KB

This report outlines the current position with the Group’s budget for 2007/08 and makes recommendations for further funding for projects from community groups.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

This report considered the final requests for funding from the remaining Social Inclusion Working Group projects budgets for the 2007/08 financial year. It requested Members to consider the following funding for the various equality strands:

 

York Citizens’ Advice Bureau (All/Inclusion)  - £1,500

York Older People’s Assembly (Age) - £1,600

York Interfaith (Faith and Religion) - £650

Disability Forum (Disability) –  £520

York Racial Equality Network (Black and minority ethnic)  - £912

Gender – £800

 

Members were informed that no specific project proposal had been received in 2007/08 relating to gender issues. It was felt that project applications relating to gender issues should receive priority consideration in 2008/09. A request had also been received for £2,000 for Disability Forum meetings and newsletters but as this group was in the process of being reviewed and relaunched the Group felt that this was not the correct time.

 

The Group then considered the following options:

 

Option A:       To approve amounts for each project with the exception of £800 for gender issues and £2,000 for Disability Forum meetings and newsletters as detailed in the report.

Option B:       To distribute the remaining amount using a formulaic approach amongst all projects listed in part A of the table in Annex 3.

 

RESOLVED:     i) That the following community group funding amounting to £5,192 be approved for the 2007/08 financial year:

 

York Citizens’ Advice Bureau (All/Inclusion)  - £1,500 in total

York Older People’s Assembly (Age) - £1,600 in total

York Interfaith (Faith and Religion) - £650 in total

Disability Forum (Disability) –  £520 in total

York Racial Equality Network (Black and minority ethnic)  - £912 in total  1.

 

ii)            That priority consideration be given to applications from community groups relating to gender issues from the 2008/09 budget. 2.

 

                iii) That membership of the Social Inclusion Working Group, including gender, be discussed at the Development Day to be held on 25 February 2008.

 

REASON:                  To support the objectives of the Group and assist applicant groups to develop their Equalities and Inclusion related activities further in the future.     

28.

Community Forum Reports and Feedback pdf icon PDF 42 KB

To consider the following updates:

a)     From Chair’s surgeries with community groups.

b)     Disability Forum development update.

c)      Inclusive York Forum minutes from meeting on 17 September 2007 (attached).

d)     Any other updates.

Minutes:

The Chair and Vice-Chair confirmed that they had met with ethnicity; disability and age related community groups and would aim to meet with faith and LGBT groups before the next SIWG meeting.

 

Lynn Jeffries updated the group on the work the volunteer unit at York University were doing to review and support the development of the Disabled People’s Forum (DPF).  This was part of a larger review of support groups for disabled people in York, which was hoping to conclude in October 2008.  The group was made up of university volunteers: post-graduate students and lecturers. It would be supported by a steering group made up of Councillors Aspden and Gunnell, Lynn Jeffries and Evie Chandler.  Lynn requested that other community groups on SIWG should make a link to this project, especially the Older People’s Assembly.

 

In the interim the DPF was commissioning a disability conference (scheduled for March/April 2008) to bring together individuals and groups that were involved in disability issues in York. The purpose would be to:

 

  • consider how voluntary groups and individuals work together currently and how this can be improved in the future
  • begin to identify key common issues and messages to be addressed to public service providers in the city

 

 All the university volunteers would be invited to the conference.

 

The Chair confirmed that the Inclusive York Forum (IYF) and the SIWG minutes were now being exchanged and sent to each groups’ members. The group requested the draft IYF minutes rather than the agreed minutes, which took longer to be published.

 

Cllr Potter circulated York People First’s newsletter to the group.

 

YREN informed the group that they had moved offices. The phone and fax numbers and e-mail address remained the same.  The new address was:

20 Falsgrave Crescent, York, YO30 7AZ.  YREN were holding an “open house” forum at their new premises on 27th February between 12noon and 2.00pm. All members of SIWG were invited to attend.

 

YREN had also put together a working group to set up an ethnic elders social group (meetings held at YREN’s new premises).

 

The Older Peoples Assembly reported that they had had a well attended (150 people) meeting recently looking at insurance, particularly travel insurance for older people, and bus passes.

 

The group asked Evie Chandler to investigate the City of York Council’s collection policy for bus passes – where people can collect passes, if and how people can collect passes for other people.  Evie to communicate results to SIWG members. 1.

 

Paul Wordsworth updated the group on the ArcLight Central building due for completion in June 2008.   Paul stated that he would like the group to promote the ArcLight project as a ‘centre’ rather than a ‘hostel’ to address negative connotations. He confirmed that there was a need to specifically reflect this in future versions of key documents, such as the Council’s corporate strategy.

29.

Verbal reports from Conferences

To receive verbal reports from Councillor Aspden on the Diverse Britain Conference and from Councillor Gunnell on the Social Inclusion Conference.

Minutes:

Councillor Aspden reported back on the Diverse Britain Conference and Councillor Gunnell on the Social Inclusion Conference on Engaging and Communicating with Hard to Reach Groups.

30.

Black Minority Ethnic (BME) Stakeholders Seminar, October 2007 pdf icon PDF 47 KB

This report discusses the key findings from the BME Stakeholders Seminar and recommends further consideration of these at a future meeting following receipt of responses from key stakeholders.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Consideration was given to the report, which outlined the key findings from the BME Stakeholders’ Seminar held in October 2007. Members were requested to allocate time at a future meeting to fully consider the final findings alongside responses from key stakeholder organisations.

 

It was reported that the key messages were currently being considered by a number of stakeholder organisations in the city and that responses to the key messages from stakeholders were still being gathered.

 

Rita Sanderson stated that the working group that organised the seminar were due to meet at a later date for a de-brief. It was confirmed that Heather Rice was the key link in the City of York Council. The Chair and Vice Chair confirmed that they would also like to be involved in the de-briefing meeting.

 

RESOLVED:             That further consideration of the key messages from the BME Stakeholder’ Seminar, in particular what the Group and the Council can do to promote solutions, be undertaken at the SIWG meeting in May (1hr to be allocated). 1.

 

REASON:                  To give proper consideration to the key messages and provides feedback to key stakeholders.

31.

City of York Council Corporate Priorities 2007-2011 pdf icon PDF 30 KB

This report informs members of the contents of the Council’s Corporate Strategy 2007-2011. Heather Rice, Director of People and Improvement will give a short presentation on the Strategy.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

This report informed members of the group representing community organisations of the contents of the Council’s Corporate Strategy 2007-11.

 

Heather Rice, Director of People and Improvement gave the group an overview of the council’s updated Corporate Strategy.  Heather pointed out that many of the priorities in the Strategy were working to tackle exclusion, for example improving the economic prosperity of people in York with a focus on minimising income differentials; improving the life chances of the most disadvantaged and disaffected children, young people and families in the city and responding to the changing population of York.

32.

Group Discussion: Without Walls Anti Poverty Strategy pdf icon PDF 44 KB

At this point, the meeting will break into small groups for discussion on key aspects of the Without Walls Anti Poverty Strategy to enable a response to be made to the Inclusive York Forum.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

At this point, the meeting broke into small groups for discussion on key aspects of the Without Walls Anti-Poverty Strategy to enable a response to be made to the Inclusive York Forum.

 

Group feedback on the Anti-poverty Strategy and what the council can do to support the key areas for actions.

 

Group A – Maximise incomes of individuals in poverty

 

1. Benefits Take up

·         Council has regular benefits campaigns

·         Councillors discuss benefit take -up issues at surgeries and when they work out in the community

·         Council offer financial support to bodies which offer benefits take up advice and advocacy

 

2. Education and Training

·         "Worklessness ethos" / the value of employment/ the poverty trap should be explored within school citizenship curriculum

 

3. Employment

·         Targeted Council job fairs in city areas of economic and social deprivation

·         Better support for people coming off benefits in preparing them to find and keep a job

·         When Council employs people who come off benefit pay them weekly not monthly so as to help them maintain a sustainable cash flow

·         Look at how and where Council advertises for jobs. Think about advertising in "specialist" press such as BME and newspapers and newsletters, disability group’s publications, etc.

·         Consider changing the accessibility of our current jobs bulleting like the size of the font on the internet

 

4. Minimise barriers

·         Council should do more to help people on the fringe of poverty to find and keep jobs, before their position becomes critical.

·         Look at providing more affordable housing for workers on low income or people on benefit. Stop selling existing Council houses/flat. Build new ones.

 

Group B – Minimise the cost of living in York and increase take up of available services

 

  • Develop innovative approaches to tackle issues like unaffordability of affordable housing – esp. for older people, people from BME communities
  • Increase supply of affordable housing
  • Prioritise investment in schemes which support inclusion e.g. transport schemes
  • Develop targeted initiatives to facilitate take-up by excluded groups – to address “downward spiral”
  • Promote and target financial literacy (for example budgeting, use of credit) for excluded communities – credit union, in particular, needs to be promoted and supported to help this
  • Citizenship in schools should be focussed around this agenda
  • Proactive initiatives to support people in tackling fuel poverty
  • Consider ways in which key services (which may be inaccessible for some) can be integrated into other Council service delivery streams (for example, dentistry through children’s centres)

 

 

Group C – Improve partnership working and organisational responses to poverty.

 

  • Make links to community events such as the Older People’s Assembly information fair held twice a year to publicise legal and debt advice.
  • Focus information and advice to very specific low-income areas of the city – this can be specific streets.
  • Lots of information and advice is available on-line or via leaflets/ brochures, but not everyone has computer access or can read.  Information also needs to be available verbally via advice centres, phone and in local places people visit e.g. doctor’s surgeries/health clinics, libraries, post  ...  view the full minutes text for item 32.

 

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