Updates from the Chairs of the Sub Committees and Lead Members.
Further to the discussion earlier on the agenda in respect of the Placed Based Care Partnership, Members noted that the first meeting had taken place and future meetings would be alternated with development sessions. From January 2023 onwards, the dates would not clash with Court of Common Council days.
Florence Keelson-Anfu had been working with officers in respect of a City Corporation UN Accreditation for Young People and welcomed input from Members in terms of work, study and recreation. Anne Corbett was thanked for her contributions in respect of carers. The Lead Member had also been working with fellow Ward Members in Farringdon, in terms of quick wins in play areas, as some places simply required better signage.
Anne Corbett advised that the number of carers had increased, with 600 self-identified in the City, and the Census data was expected at the end of October. Whilst the Carers’ Group valued City Connections, they welcomed the Tower Hamlets pilot appointment at the end of October. The Group have ongoing concerns about the cost of living and are pleased that face-to-face meetings have resumed.
The new High Support Hostel was expected to open in November 2022, and the Chair would arrange a visit for Members in due course. The next meeting of the Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Sub Committee was scheduled for 3rd October 2022. There was a report on this non-public agenda about the Assessment Centre and a request for a delegated authority.
The Chair and Deputy Chair of the Housing Management and Almshouses Sub Committee had been visiting the City’s Housing Estates during the summer, including those outside the City. Some quick wins had been achieved and the Chair and Deputy Chair felt that they had made good connections with residents, particularly at Sydenham Hill. All Members were invited to provide input to the new Customer Services and Care Review.
There has been a temporary remedy to the problems with static electricity on play equipment and officers were looking for a permanent solution.
The Safeguarding Sub Committee had not met since the last Committee and was due to meet again on 10th October 2022.
Complaint issue following a leak
A Member raised an issue arising from a recent complaint about a leak, where calls went unanswered, were picked up by answering machines and not returned, and/or the wrong advice was given by contractors. The leak had persisted for several days with no updates to residents. The Assistant Director had visited the tenants and investigated the issue. Whilst accepting that there would always be a risk of leaks, Members felt strongly about the service failures in this case and stressed that a resolution must not wait until the completion of the Customer Service Review.
The Director advised that he would carry out a full investigation and provide all Members of the Housing Sub Committee with a response. The Director also advised that the Housing Sub and Grand Committees would receive a report on repairs and maintenance at their next meetings, specifically in terms of repairing leaks, and presenting a timeframe. The Director also stressed the importance of Member feed-back on the Communications and Customer Service Review and advised that there had been a consultation session with residents last week.
In closing the meeting, the Committee thanked Executive Director of Community and Children’s Services for this excellent service over the past 5 years and wished him well in the future.