Venue: Cabinet Suite - Shire Hall, Gloucester. View directions
Contact: Jo Moore (DSU)
To note any apologies for absence.
The following apologies were noted.
Cllr Stephan Fifield (Chair) – represented by Vice Chair, Cllr Lisa Spivey
Cllr Stephen Robinson – substituted by Cllr David Drew.
In the absence of Cllr Stephan Fifield, Vice Chair, Cllr Lisa Spivey, acted as Chair at the meeting.
Declarations of Interest
To confirm any declarations of interest.
No declarations of interest were made at the meeting.
To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 15 November 2022, (joint meeting with the Gloucestershire Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting), and the minutes of the meeting held on 24 January 2023.
The minutes of the meetings held on 15 November 2022 and 24 January 2023 were confirmed and agreed as a correct record of the meetings.
A report from the Executive Director of Adult Social Care, Wellbeing and Communities on the actions being taken in preparation for the introduction of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) assessment of local authorities and Integrated Care Systems from April 2023.
4.1 Professor Sarah Scott, (Executive Director of Adult Social Care, Wellbeing and Communities), and Emily White, (Director of Quality, Performance and Strategy, Adult Social Care), gave an update on the background and preparations for the introduction of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) assessment of local authorities and Integrated Care Systems on 1 April 2023.
4.2 To view the slide show presentation presented at the meeting please open the link here.
4.3 Members noted the information and were advised to consider their individual roles and that of the committee in anticipation of a visit from the Care Quality Commission. It was reported that a visit could be imminent immediately following the launch date of 1 April 2023.
4.4 Although the CQC inspection approach was not unfamiliar to the council, it had been over a decade since the last inspection of Adult Social Care Services had been made and therefore important for officers and members to familiarise themselves with the regulatory process.
4.5 Members were advised how the CQC assurance process would be used as a lever to develop the council’s strategic approach to improvement, prioritisation and transformation based on the following areas of focus: -
4.5.1 Data strategy
4.5.2 Improvement strategy
4.5.3 Applying a prioritisation approach for the council’s transformation programme
4.5.4 Development of a local account or annual report for adult social care
4.6 Presenting an overview of the timelines anticipated following the launch of the CQC assurance process, the committee was informed that, from 1 April 2023 the council would be reviewing data and documentary evidence from across all local authorities with a focus on care provision, integration and continuity and on assessing needs.
4.7 CQC intended to commence with a limited number of pilot assessments from April. These would be applied to up to 5 local authorities and take place between April and September 2023.
4.8 During the period September to December 2023, initial formal assessments of all local authorities would be undertaken as a starting point. The aim was to carry out up to 20 assessments during this period. Work was underway involving local authorities and others to consider the best way to publish the outcomes of the assessments.
4.9 Members were reassured that a reliable source of good evidence was available and that partnership arrangements were strong. The intention was for the new evidence gathering arrangement to build into the work going forward and not be a one-off procedure.
4.10 Risk management and quality assurance data would help identify any gaps and assist in the transformation of adult services. This and any recommendations from the CQC would aid the continuing improvement programme.
4.11 Responding to questions, the Director of Quality, Performance and Strategy, Adult Social Care, confirmed that links involved in the gathering of evidence and quality assurance plans drawn up by the council and the work of local health systems would be encouraged. It was explained that it was not a straightforward process to produce an overall plan but that it was a sensible ... view the full minutes text for item 4.
At the Gloucestershire County Council meeting held on 9 November 2022, members considered Motion 908, (Violence Against Women and Girls). Please refer to the outcomes of the Motion (attached) at that meeting.
The members of the Adult Social Care and Communities Scrutiny Committee are asked to ‘consider a report on the steps being taken by Gloucestershire County Council to end Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) in Gloucestershire’.
County Council Officer leads for Domestic Abuse will be in attendance at the meeting. A representative from Gloucestershire Constabulary will also join the meeting on behalf of the Office of Police and Crime Commissioner. The Constabulary will answer questions on their work relating to this area.
5.1 At the Gloucestershire County Council meeting held on 9 November 2022, members considered Motion 908, (Violence Against Women and Girls). To view the discussion and the outcomes of the motion at the full council meeting, please refer to the link to the minutes of the meeting here. One of the outcomes was a request that the Adult Social Care and Communities Scrutiny Committee investigate the work of the County Council in addressing the concerns raised at the council meeting and to produce a report following a discussion at this meeting to present to Cabinet.
5.2 Claire Procter, Assistant Director of Prevention, Wellbeing and Communities, (Public Health and Communities), presented a report on the steps being taken by the County Council to end Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) in Gloucestershire. County Council lead officers for Domestic Abuse were also in attendance at the meeting. A representative from the Gloucestershire Constabulary attended the meeting on behalf of the Office of Police and Crime Commissioner, (OPCC), to respond to questions on the work of the OPCC in relation to this area. The slideshow presented at the meeting can be viewed at the link here.
5.3 The Government publication ‘Tackling Violence against Women and Girls Strategy’ published in 2021 defines VAWG as ‘acts of violence or abuse that we know disproportionately affect women and girls’ including, but not limited to the following crimes and behaviour; ‘rape and other sexual offences, domestic abuse, stalking, ‘honour’- based abuse, (including female genital mutilation, forced marriage, and ‘honour’ killings’)’, as well as offences committed online.
5.4 According to the latest statistics cited in the Government Strategy, nationally, 1 in 5 women are victims of sexual assault, (or attempted assault), in their lifetime, (5% of victims are men); over 27% of women have experienced domestic abuse since the age of 16 (14% of men); and 20% of women aged 16-74 have experienced stalking since the age of 16 (10% of men).
5.5 Local data for the period 2021/22 recorded 12,797 crimes, (reported to Gloucestershire Police), as VAWG, (a 44% increase from that reported in 2020/21); reports of domestic abuse accounted for 44% of all VAWG crimes recorded by Gloucestershire Police. 7670 domestic abuse crimes were recorded in 21/22 (a 42% increase from 20/21, reflecting a continued upward trend). In 2021/22, 1516 stalking crimes were recorded, (compared with 591 recorded in 20/21). Whist the vast majority of stalking crimes were linked to domestic abuse; 2% of recorded stalking crimes classified as VAWG related to non-Domestic Abuse stalking. 1912 sexual offences were recorded in 2021/22, (a 39% increase from 20/21).
5.6 The local response to VAWG is shared between several lead organisations, including, but not limited to Gloucestershire County Council, Gloucestershire Constabulary and the Office of Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC). It was noted that Gloucestershire Police had made VAWG a priority issue.
5.7 A number of multi-agency partnership groups also provide strategic oversight and co-ordination. These include: the Domestic Abuse Local Partnership Board, (chaired by the ... view the full minutes text for item 5.
A report from the Director of Public Health (Gloucestershire County Council).
6.1 The committee received an update from the Director of Public Health. To view the information report circulated with the agenda, please refer to the link here.
6.2 Responding to a question on obesity levels and clarification on whether the data indicated an increase or decrease, it was confirmed there had been an improvement in the past month and that the latest figures would be circulated after the meeting. Action by – Director of Public Health
6.3 One member enquired into recent media reports indicating a national shortage of pharmacists. It was confirmed there was a national shortage and that the issue was being considered as a priority. Delegated by NHS England to the Gloucestershire Integrated Care Board on 1 April 2023, it was suggested the matter be referred to the Gloucestershire Health, Overview and Scrutiny Committee to include on the committee work plan. Action by – Democratic Services
6.4 Another member expressed concern about the negative impact of vaping on people’s health and requested more information on what action was being considered to address the issue. It was agreed the Director of Public would circulate a link on the work being undertaken in this area after the meeting. Action by – Director of Public Health
6.5 Seeking clarification on budgetary matters, (adult social care), and the use of reserves, it was suggested an item be added to the committee work plan for consideration after the May Full Council annual general meeting. Action by – Director of Public Health
The report was noted.
A report from the Executive Director of Adult Social Care, Wellbeing and Communities.
7.1 The Executive Director of Adult Social Care, Wellbeing and Communities gave an update on the delivery of adult social care. To view the information report circulated with the agenda, please refer to the link here.
7.2 Members received a full and detailed update on the extensive work being undertaken to secure a new provider for the community meals service from 1 April 2023. A range of options were being considered, involving the private and voluntary and community sectors, with an increased likelihood more than one provider would be required to offer community meals as part of the new contract.
7.3 It was explained that the service was a non-statutory service, for which many other local authorities had chosen not to recommission. The county council, however, wanted to continue the service, which was regarded as an important service due to the value it gave to supporting residents maintain their nutritional well-being and manage healthy lifestyles.
7.4 Responding to concerns about the continuation of the service and the impact on local communities, the Director of Adult Social Care, Wellbeing and Communities reassured members that the council was extremely committed to providing a hot meal service post 31 March 2023. This was, however, not without significant challenges due to the ongoing struggle of finding a provider and the decision by the current provider to withdraw its service.
7.5 Members noted the information, including proposed options. It was agreed a worst case scenario would be for frozen emails to be delivered to people’s homes and for someone to go into the home to reheat the meal.
7.6 The committee was assured everything possible was being done to retain the service. The council was aware of the impact the new arrangement would have on people with dementia and with mobility issues and hoped to provide an interim arrangement for a period of six months whilst trying to secure a more permanent arrangement for the long term.
7.7 The committee noted the information report and requested regular updates on the community meals contract. Action by – Executive Director of Adult Social Care, Wellbeing and Communities
An update on matters relating to the portfolio of services delivered by the Chief Fire Officer, (Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service), and within the remit of the Gloucestershire County Council’s Adult Social Care and Communities Scrutiny Committee, (Trading Standards, Civil Protection and Coroners Services).
8.1 The committee received a detailed overview of matters relating to the delivery of services within the portfolio of services covered by the Chief Fire Officer, (Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service), and within the remit of the Gloucestershire County Council Adult Social Care and Communities Scrutiny Committee, (Trading Standards, Civil Protection and Coroners Services).
8.2 To view the full report, please open the link here
8.3 Cllr Terry Hale noted the response from the Trading Standards Team on concerns relating to the welfare and risks associated with free roaming sheep in the Forest of Dean District. Cllr Hale also referred to the outcomes of a recent meeting with representatives from statutory organisations responsible for the welfare and safety of the sheep. Expressing his continued frustration, Cllr Hale urged the Deputy Chief Fire Officer to request the Trading Standards Team to reconsider what action it might be able to take to address the situation. The Deputy Chief Fire Officer agreed to pursue the matter and report back to Cllr Hale. Action by – Deputy Chief Fire Officer
8.4 The report was noted
To suggest items for consideration at future meetings.
The work plan was noted with a suggestion that the following items be considered at the meeting on 16 May 2023: -
1. Gloucestershire Combatting Drug Partnership Update
2. Sexual Health Issues Briefing