Agenda item - Commissioning of Domestic Violence and Abuse Services

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Agenda item

Commissioning of Domestic Violence and Abuse Services

Report of the Executive Director for Housing, Neighbourhoods & Communities (to be circulated).

Decision:

RESOLVED – that Committee:

 

1.    Notes the contents of the report.

 

2.    Expresses concern that Audit & Standards Committee has declined to carry out a thorough investigation into the events leading to changes to Domestic Abuse, Domestic Violence and Sexual Violence service arrangements over which tens of thousands of residents have petitioned the Council for action.

 

3.    Recommends to Policy & Resources Committee the establishment of a cross-party Member Working Group to:

 

(i)            Carry out a thorough investigation into the events leading to changes to Domestic Abuse, Domestic Violence and Sexual Violence service arrangements.

 

(ii)          Review the Council’s policy and practice regarding social value and community wealth-building from a commissioning and procurement perspective including the above-mentioned services.

 

(iii)         Recommend any necessary changes and actions for improvement.

Minutes:

84.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director of Housing, Neighbourhoods & Communities which informed Members of the process regarding the re-commissioning of the service and recommended that the Policy & Resources Committee be requested to approve the establishemnt of a Member oversight working group.

 

84.2    Councillor Evans expressed support for the working group.

 

84.3    Jo Martindale noted that social value was key and requested that the working group focus on collaborative commissioning and to be more creative in developing a strategy while making sure the voluntary sector was included. Support regarding financial assistance was expressed. It was noted that there was an opportunity to make an investment into refugees services and to bring cohesion to these services.

 

84.4    The Head of Safer Communities stated that BHCC were committed to support organisations through the transition period.

 

84.5    The Executive Director for Housing, Neighbourhoods & Communities stated that work was undertaken to make sure no one fell through any gaps.

 

84.6    Councillor Evans proposed an amendmnet on behalf of the Labour Group.

 

84.7    Councillor Grimshaw formally seconded the amendment.

 

84.8    Councillor Simson proposed an amendment on behalf of the Conservative Group.

 

84.9    Councillor Nemeth formally seconded the amendment.

 

84.10  Councillor Evans clarified that the Chair of Audit & Standards did not decline a full investigation and quoted his comments at Audit & Standards to the effect that given the reports going to TECC and P& R and the proposals to set up a working group to review the Council’s approach, he did not consider it necessary or proportionate to establish yet another work stream but that they would keep this  under review and should issues come to light which were of legitimate interest to Audit & Standards Committee they would look at them.

 

84.11  Councillor MacCafferty thanked the survivors who attended the committee and provided a brief overview of the events leading to the issue. It was clarified that the Green Party had met with campaigners and the Chief Executive of RISE to help develop a way forward. It was stated that the focus was on working collaboratively with all parties to find answers and solutions that asserted the importance of domestic violence services.

 

84.12  Councillor Powell noted the myriad of issues highlighted by public speakers and noted that it would be the focus of the Member Working Group to scrutinise what had happened.

 

84.13  Joanna Martindale expressed support for the third sector and stated that this had occurred during NICE Committee not TECC. It was clarified that the Labour Group had decided to close the NICE committee.

 

84.14  Councillor Ebel noted concern with regard to the Labour amendment which would limit the ability for the Policy & Resources Committee to set up terms of the working group.

 

84.15  Councillor Simson noted that it was important that this be non-political.

 

84.16  The Chair then put the Labour Group amendment to the vote which was lost.

 

84.17  The Chair then put the Conservative Group Motion to the vote which was carried.

 

84.18  The Chair then put the recommendations as amended to the vote which were carried.

 

84.19   RESOLVED:

 

(1)      That the contents of the report be noted;

 

(2)      That the committee’s concern be expressed that the Audit & Standards Committee has declined to carry out a thorough investigation into the events leading to changes to Domestic Abuse, Domestic Violence and Sexual Violence service arrangements over which tens of thousands of residents have petitioned the Council for action;

 

(3)      That the Policy & Resources Committee be recommended to establish of a cross-party Member Working Group to:

 

(i)        Carry out a thorough investigation into the events leading to changes to Domestic Abuse, Domestic Violence and Sexual Violence service arrangements.

 

(ii)       Review the Council’s policy and practice regarding social value and community wealth-building from a commissioning and procurement perspective including the above-mentioned services.

 

(iii)      Recommend any necessary changes and actions for improvement.

 

Supporting documents:

 


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