Agenda and draft minutes
Venue: Virtual Meeting - Online access
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Apologies for Absence
To receive any apologies for absence.
Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Coppinger and Tessa Lindfield.
To receive any declarations of interest.
The Chairman declared a personal interest as he worked for a pharmaceutical company, Sanofi Pasteur. Councillor Carroll declared his employment in the interests of full transparency and to highlight that should for any reason during the meeting, or indeed during future meetings, the Health and Wellbeing Board discussed anything directly related to Sanofi Pastuer’s business he would abstain from the discussion and leave the room as required. The Chairman also declared another personal interest as he was currently working as a policy advisor on the governments vaccine task force.
To confirm the minutes of the meeting held 19th January 2021.
RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That the minutes of the meeting held on 19th January 2021 were agreed as a true and accurate record.
To receive an update on housing in RBWM.
Tracy Hendren, Head of Housing and Environmental Health, said that the service was continuing to see an increase in the number of applications made. There were currently 300 live cases, with 150 of those being main duty cases where the individual was starting in temporary accommodation. The main cause of homelessness this month had been domestic abuse. There had been a freeze on evictions in the private rental sector and this would continue until the end of April 2021 when it would be possible for a six month eviction notice to be given again.
On the rough sleeper pathway, there were currently 32 households involved while 8 households had positively moved on in the last week. The alternative giving scheme had been set up and was currently available at six outlets across RBWM where residents could donate. Regarding temporary accommodation, there were currently 255 households in temporary accommodation across the borough, with 48% being from within the borough. A ten-bed unit had recently been purchased in the borough to help provide more temporary accommodation to those that needed it. Work had also been done with voluntary organisations to help with funding for things like furniture in temporary accommodation if it was needed.
Councillor Clark joined the meeting.
The Chairman asked the proportion of individuals coming through the pathway that had been referred from other organisations, for example the Dash Charity.
Tracy Hendren explained that domestic abuse had been the most common cause of homelessness recently, which was due to lockdown and also the number of private sector options decreasing.
The Chairman said that the work of organisations like the Dash Charity were very important and it was essential that people knew the signs of domestic abuse so that victims could be helped as soon as possible.
Huw Thomas commented on the number of households that were on the pathway and asked how many individuals it was. He asked how many people became homeless each month on average.
Tracy Hendren clarified that it was 32 individuals but the term households was used. The turnover of households through the pathway meant that it was enough to reduce numbers but they had recently started to increase again.
Councillor Stimson asked how many victims there were of domestic abuse.
Tracy Hendren said that there was an average of between 8 and 12 cases each month. Dash provided support to households involved and the authority would provide accommodation if refuge had not already been found.
The Chairman said that the rough sleeper pathway needed to be a fundamental part of the Health and Wellbeing strategy for the borough. He suggested that it would be good to invite a representative from the Dash Charity to the next meeting to share their experiences. The Chairman thanked Tracy Hendren for the update.
ACTION – The Dash Charity to be invited to the next Health and Wellbeing Board meeting in July 2021.
To receive a verbal report on the above titled item.
Charlotte Brockman, Co-Founder of Mad Millennials, and Catrin Donnelly, part of the Leadership Team at Mad Millennials, gave the Board a presentation which provided some background to the organisation and what it was trying to achieve. The main aim of Mad Millennials was to support the millennial generation with their mental health and wellbeing. Mad Millennials offered a peer support scheme and mentoring, while also holding regular monthly meetings where certain themes could be discussed by the group. Informal social events were also offered which could help members to build friendships. Mad Millennials was particularly important due to the impact that loneliness had on many people across the course of the pandemic. The organisation aimed to help take pressure of the NHS and was an easily available access point to mental health services.
The Chairman commented on some of the statistics that had been shown as part of the presentation, which reinforced the importance of young people’s mental health. He asked what some of the key things young people were asking for.
Charlotte Brockman said that it often focussed on money and financial issues. The intensity of social media and how to handle it was also a common problem.
Catrin Donnelly explained that it was important for young people to find a community where other people also had similar interests. In order to do this, people would need to actively put themselves out there which could often be difficult to do. Mad Millennials provided a space where people could share thoughts and ideas while also listening.
Anna Richards, Public Health Consultant, said that there was some links to be made with the Health and Wellbeing strategy which was being considered by the Board in the next agenda item, particularly around social isolation and mental health. She asked how it would be best to engage millennials with their communities going forward, which would help achieve the strategy.
Charlotte Brockman suggested focus groups would be useful in this situation to help with the ideas that had not been thought of, it was important to involve people from all different age groups.
Catrin Donnelly added that Mad Millennials were cautious with the wording that they used. There was a concern from some young people that they did not want to ‘use up spaces’ which could be used for someone else.
Councillor Stimson explained that having activities and using things like working on gardens or allotments was a good way to get away from the difficulties of everyday life and would also help young people to discuss issues and help solve them.
Charlotte Brockman agreed and said that it was a good idea to help distract young people from their issues and let the conversation flow.
The Chairman thanked Charlotte Brockman and Catrin Donnelly for attending the meeting. It was a critical issue and Mad Millennials was doing some excellent work for young people in the borough.
Health and Wellbeing Board Strategic Framework
To hear about the strategic framework.
Hilary Hall, Executive Director of Adults, Health and Housing, explained that the Board had a statutory duty to agree and approve the Joint Health and Wellbeing strategy. The previous strategy had around twelve priorities and coupled with the challenges of the pandemic it had been decided that going forward the revised strategy would be clearer. The new strategy was based around four key priorities and it was hoped that the priorities would shape the agenda for the Health and Wellbeing Board going forwards. The strategy had been developed within the context of the Frimley Integrated Care System strategy, with this Joint Health and Wellbeing strategy being regarded as the borough’s place response to the Frimley strategy. This would help ensure that duplication of work was avoided.
Kevin McDaniel, Director of Children’s Services, believed that the themes in the strategy would complement the borough well and could link in effectively with the ‘starting well’ priority which was ongoing.
RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That the Health and Wellbeing Board noted the report and:
i) Approved the Joint Health and Wellbeing/Place Strategy 2021-2025.
Outbreak Engagement Board Update
To receive an update on the work of the Outbreak Engagement Board.
Hilary Hall provided the Board with an update on the work of the Outbreak Engagement Board. The Board had been meeting every two weeks, with alternate meetings held in public. This had been useful to increase engagement and awareness of what the borough was doing to tackle the pandemic, with an item on each agenda dedicated to answering questions from residents which had been submitted in advance of the meeting. The Board usually considered three core strands: the latest local position data, enforcement and compliance activity, and communication and engagement activity. The Communications Team at RBWM had worked incredibly hard over the course of the pandemic to ensure that the right messaging was sent out. An update on the vaccination programme in the borough was also provided at each meeting. Hilary Hall believed that the Board had been working well.
The Chairman, as one of the Board Members, agreed with Hilary Hall and thought that the Outbreak Engagement Board had been an effective meeting. There had also been a good number of public questions at each meeting, which allowed officers to provide confidence to residents. The Chairman underlined the importance of testing and that kits were available for everyone. He thanked the Communications Team for all their work.
Kevin McDaniel and Caroline Farrar left the meeting.
Lynne Lidster joined the meeting.
Library Transformation Strategy
To receive a presentation on the Library Transformation Strategy.
Angela Huisman, Library and Resident Contact Lead, gave the Board a presentation on the Library Transformation Strategy. The library service vision was underpinned by six key strategic priorities:
The proposed LTS (Library Transformation Strategy) outlined how the library service would continue to adapt in an agile way to changing circumstances, opportunities, challenges and demands. There was an aim to be clear about the priorities and outcomes for the service, with an understanding of the changing environment in which libraries operated. The strategy also aimed to be creative and realistic around new possibilities and ways of working.
Before lockdown, Maidenhead Library frequently had over 1,000 visits a day for a variety of reasons, including study, community group activities and exercise. The largest demographic was the under 24s, while during lockdown this had changed slightly to those aged between 18-35.
The community library model required one single part-time staff member on site for a limited number of hours per week. This was to facilitate and coordinate the range of activities and support services delivered by volunteers, charities and other organisations while helping residents navigate access to digital and physical information sources and books. It was worth noting that there were significantly more library volunteers than library advisors.
In terms of value for money and contribution to public services, for every £1 efficiently invested in library services, £6.95 was returned to the local economy. The accessibility hour was not proposed to be withdrawn, instead it could be changed from 9-10am to 10-11am. The proposal sought to retain professional staff on duty for all published opening hours. These staff underwent enhanced DBS checking and also rigorous training in areas such as Safeguarding, Sensory Disability Support, Dash and Domestic Abuse Support and Autism awareness. Volunteers would continue to work alongside staff but would be supervised and managed by a library professional. The main aim was to provide digital and physical support to ensure access for all.
The consultation process would be as follows:
The Council had a statutory duty to provide a comprehensive and efficient library service that met the needs of residents. It was important that residents were involved in defining what that was. This was an opportunity for residents, partners and stakeholders to make their views known.
The Chairman commented that it was important the library service had a good digital offering going forward but it was also important to make sure that physical access was still provided.
Councillor Bhangra passed on his thanks ... view the full minutes text for item 254/15
Better Care Fund Update
To hear an update on the Better Care Fund.
Lynne Lidster, Head of Commissioning – People, gave an update on the Better Care Fund (BCF). A manager for the BCF had now taken up post in the CCG which meant going forward more detailed updates could be given to the Board. The planning guidance for the BCF for 2021 was published in December 2020, with the Board asked to submit an end of year reconciliation to the Department of Health to confirm that the national minimum standards had been met. This was currently in draft form and would need to be submitted towards the end of May 2021.
The performance indicators for the BCF continued to be monitored by RBWM and CCG, except for the ‘delayed transfers’ indicator which had been suspended due to the pandemic. The other three indicators were all on target. In terms of finances, the BCF was £13.7 million last year, with £13.6 million being allocated. For 2021/22, the disability allowance would continue at the same level and the CCG contribution would increase by 5.3%. Current estimations suggest that there would be £341,000 which had not yet been allocated to new projects.
Future Meeting Dates
· July 2021
· October 2021
The Board noted that the next meeting was due to be held in July 2021, with the exact date to be communicated in due course.