Charles Woodd from the Department for Communities and Local ...

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Charles Woodd from the Department for Communities and Local ...

  1. 1. Empowered communities – implementing the White Paper Charles Woodd - Community Empowerment Division
  2. 2. Strong and prosperous communities <ul><li>‘ The aim of [the Local Government White Paper] is to give local people and local communities more influence and power to improve their lives.’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ It is about …..rebalancing the relationship between central government, local government and local people.’ </li></ul><ul><li>Ruth Kelly, MP </li></ul><ul><li>Secretary of State </li></ul>
  3. 3. Securing participation – the new Best Value duty <ul><li>Under the new Best Value duty, authorities will be required to take steps, where appropriate, to ensure participation of local citizens by: </li></ul><ul><li>Informing them </li></ul><ul><li>Consulting citizens and communities </li></ul><ul><li>Involving them in designing, delivering or assessing a service </li></ul>
  4. 4. The structural context for community engagement <ul><li>Sustainable Community Strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Local Area Agreement </li></ul><ul><li>Local Development Framework </li></ul><ul><li>A strategic framework for commissioning </li></ul><ul><li>Statement of Community Involvement </li></ul><ul><li>Asset management strategies and plans </li></ul><ul><li>Compact with the voluntary and community sector </li></ul><ul><li>Neighbourhood management and governance </li></ul>
  5. 5. A strategic approach to community engagement and empowerment <ul><li>Two dimensions to community engagement and empowerment: </li></ul><ul><li>Creating more opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>Building capacity, in both local government and communities, to take advantage of those opportunities </li></ul>
  6. 6. Three starting points…. <ul><li>Blueprints – no; recipes – yes </li></ul><ul><li>Diverse responses in unique localities </li></ul><ul><li>The limits of top down planning: learning through trial and error and shared experience </li></ul>
  7. 7. OPPORTUNITIES… Strengthening the role and representativeness of councillors <ul><li>Commission on Councillors, looking at </li></ul><ul><ul><li>recruitment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>retention </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>recognition </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reporting in November 2007 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Community Call for Action </li></ul><ul><li>Overview and Scrutiny Committee </li></ul>
  8. 8. OPPORTUNITIES… Representative structures <ul><li>Representation on the LSP </li></ul><ul><li>The proposed health-related LINks – local involvement networks </li></ul><ul><li>Other service-based bodies </li></ul><ul><li>Top-down devolved structures – eg area committees and forums </li></ul>
  9. 9. OPPORTUNITIES… Neighbourhood management and governance <ul><li>Parish and community councils </li></ul><ul><ul><li>simplifying and extending process of establishment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>extending well-being power to Quality parishes </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Neighbourhood management </li></ul><ul><li>Local charters, perhaps based on neighbourhood or parish planning </li></ul><ul><li>Residents networks, forums etc </li></ul>
  10. 10. OPPORTUNITIES… Community management and ownership of assets <ul><li>Quirk Review: </li></ul><ul><li>- corporate approach to asset management </li></ul><ul><li>- asset transfer to communities as a serious option </li></ul><ul><li>- greater awareness of powers and good practice </li></ul><ul><li>Tenant management: </li></ul><ul><li>- review of Right to Manage regulations </li></ul>
  11. 11. BUILDING CAPACITY… Building capacity in local government <ul><li>Community engagement as an improvement priority within the emerging National Improvement Strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Training councils and other LSP partners as commissioners – in the broad sense </li></ul><ul><li>Learning provision for councillors as well as officers </li></ul>
  12. 12. BUILDING CAPACITY… Building capacity in communities <ul><li>Learning for active citizenship and citizen governance – www.takepart.org </li></ul><ul><li>Better co-ordination of community development – Community Development Challenge report </li></ul><ul><li>Neighbourhood/community level infrastructure – Firm Foundations ( Home Office 2004) </li></ul><ul><li>Good practice guidance, online information including www.togetherwecan.info </li></ul>
  13. 13. BUILDING CAPACITY… Building capacity in the third sector <ul><li>ChangeUp/Capacitybuilders – support for the third sector infrastructure </li></ul><ul><li>National specialist networks eg on asset-based development </li></ul><ul><li>Community Assets Transfer Fund – grants to facilitate asset transfer to communities </li></ul>
  14. 14. Guidance and support <ul><li>Statutory place-shaping guidance </li></ul><ul><li>Guidance package on Community Call for Action, Overview and Scrutiny and LINks </li></ul><ul><li>Good practice guidance on community empowerment – LGA led </li></ul><ul><li>Quality assurance for community empowerment practice – national and regional consortia (developing from May 2007?) </li></ul>
  15. 15. Questions <ul><li>What do you want from national good practice guidance? </li></ul><ul><li>What mechanisms are there for learning and sharing across the region? What would add value? </li></ul><ul><li>What mechanisms already exist in local areas for developing a strategic approach to community engagement and empowerment? </li></ul>
  16. 16. Contact details <ul><li>Charles Woodd </li></ul><ul><li>Community Empowerment Division </li></ul><ul><li>Communities and Local Government </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Tel: 020 7944 3311 </li></ul>

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