Agenda and minutes

Cabinet Committee Corporate Parenting
Wednesday, 4th March, 2020 10:00

Venue: Committee Rooms 2/3, Civic Offices Angel Street Bridgend CF31 4WB. View directions

Contact: Michael Pitman 

Items
No. Item

208.

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of personal and prejudicial interest (if any) from Members/Officers in accordance with the provisions of the Members’ Code of Conduct adopted by Council from 1 September 2008.

Minutes:

None

209.

Approval of Minutes pdf icon PDF 80 KB

To receive for approval the minutes of 04/09/2019

Minutes:

RESOLVED:                That the minutes of the meeting of 4th September   2019 be approved as a true and accurate record.

210.

Looked After Children Reduction Strategy & Early Help & Safeguarding Board Strategy pdf icon PDF 126 KB

Invitees:

 

Laura Kinsey – Head of Children’s Social Care

Iain McMillan – Group Manager - Case Management & Transition

Mark Lewis – Group Manager Integrated Working and Family Support

Dave Wright – Family Support Services Manager

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Children’s Social Care presented a report updating the Committee on the work of the Welsh Government National Technical Group which was presented to Corporate Parenting on 29th May 2019, and set out the actions that the Local Authority had undertaken since that date in respect of its implementation of its Looked after Children (LAC) reduction strategy.

 

The Head of Children’s Social Care provided a background to progress made and the drafting of a new action plan which would refocus on the crosscutting directorate activity. She outlined the LAC Reduction Expectation Strategy, the launch of the Permanency Monitoring Group and the Joint Action Plan shortly to be presented to the Early Help and Safeguarding board.

 

The Leader stated that he was reassured that progress was being made however there had been a small rise in the number of LAC in the last 12 months and he asked if it could be the start of a trend. He also asked what the impact was of the Reunification Support Worker posts in the Fostering Service and the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) reunification toolkit. The Head of Children’s Social Care explained that there had been an issue with a small number of complex needs children however there was no sharp increase and this was not the direction of travel. She acknowledged that there had been an impact on numbers from large sibling groups.  With regard to the Reunification Support Worker posts, two people were in post and trained and a cohort of cases had been identified for them to work with. The other 2 posts had been re-advertised and they were confident they would be appointing shortly. The key to the NSPCC toolkit was assessment and the process in place was appropriate.      

 

A member asked if there was any improvement in foster care recruitment under Cwm Taf. She was advised that recruitment was moving in the right direction. The Group Manager Integrated Working and Family Support explained that working with Cwm Taf was hugely positive. The Youth Justice Service (which was under special measures) now had a dedicated health worker and could draw down on significant additional money linked to the ICF. The Corporate Director, Social Services and Wellbeing added that Cwm Taf had been very positive from a children’s services perspective in terms of strong links and established governance processes in terms of joint working.      

 

A member asked if the authority was engaging with the academic world. She added that Cardiff University had a great deal of knowledge in this area that they could share. The Corporate Director- Education and Family Support replied that he was not aware of any work on a local level however there had been connections with the universities through advisory groups and work streams. The Corporate Director Social Services and Wellbeing explained that there had recently been discussions regarding the best way to capitalise on this knowledge. She added that Welsh Government had recently visited all 22 authorities  ...  view the full minutes text for item 210.

211.

Urgent Items

To consider any other item(s) of business in respect of which notice has been given in accordance with Part 4 (paragraph 4) of the Council Procedure Rules and which the person presiding at the meeting is of the opinion should be reason of special circumstances be transacted at the meeting as a matter of urgency.

Minutes:

None

212.

Thanks to Corporate Director - Social Services and Wellbeing

Minutes:

The Leader advised the Committee that this was the Corporate Director, Social Services and Wellbeing’s last meeting of the Cabinet Committee Corporate Parenting and that she was due to leave shortly. He thanked her for the experience, advice and guidance she had given and together with the Chairperson, Members and Officers, he thanked her for her support and for keeping the authority safe.

 

The Corporate Director, Social Services and Wellbeing thanked officers and the Committee for their warm wishes and replied that it had been a privilege and that she had loved her job. She always felt supported and she appreciated the respectful and challenging relationship with Members.