Agenda item

Community Forum

Community representatives are invited to raise equality and inclusion matters about council policy and services which are of importance to the groups they represent.



Community representatives were invited to raise equality and inclusion matters about council policy and services which were of importance to the groups they represented.  The following issues were raised:


(i)           Swimming Facilities


In response to questions raised by George Wright, the group was informed that Yearsley Pool would continue to be part of the Council’s leisure portfolio.  In respect of the sports centre at the University of York that would be open to the public, the council’s contract with the university under which the funding of £3m had been granted had stated that the provision must comply with equalities legislation and the Public Sector Duty. 


Chris Edmondson expressed concern at recent cancellations of the hydrotherapy sessions at Energise because changes in staffing arrangements meant that no one was available who had been trained to use the hoist.  Officers stated that they would look into this matter.  [Following the meeting it was ascertained that previously the sessions had relied on casual staff to act as lifeguards for the sessions but that this had not proved to be a satisfactory arrangement.  It was now intended to recruit lifeguard staff on the basis of sessions run in longer blocks which would be better for customers].


(ii)          YREN


·        Details were given of events celebrating the 20th Anniversary of YREN. 

·        The group was informed that the International Shared Meal would be held on 27 October 2012.

·        YREN was pleased that it had been able to provide office accommodation for the City of Sanctuary Co-ordinator.

·        To mark the start of Refugee Week, YREN and the York City of Sanctuary had held an Open House event, this had included a myth-busting quiz.

·        There were ongoing concerns regarding funding for YREN and the increasing demands for its services.


(iii)        York Independent Living Network


Details were given of an event organised by York Independent Living Network at which representatives from the Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group would provide information about what the new arrangements may mean to the community. 


(iv)        Bus Pass Renewals


Concerns were expressed that although some visually impaired people received reminders when their bus passes needed to be renewed some did not.  Concerns were also expressed that proof of registration as blind or partially sighted had to be provided each time the pass was renewed.   This was not the case when people reapplied for a Disabled Persons Railcard.   It was agreed that these concerns would be forwarded to the officers concerned1. 


(v)         York Older People’s Assembly


Details were given of forthcoming events that were being organised by YOPA, including the 8th Annual 50+ Festival that would take place from 29 September to 7 October.


(vi)        Mental Health Forum


An update was given on the work of the York Dementia Working Group.  Its report on the implementation in York of the National Dementia Strategy was due to be completed in September.  A separate Joseph Rowntree Foundation funded dementia research project ‘Dementia Without Walls’ was looking at how to make York a more dementia-friendly city.  This was expected to report in late September/early October.


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