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Consultation and Engagement Strategy


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Presentation to Swansea Council's Overview & SCrutiny Business Committee

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Consultation and Engagement Strategy

  1. 1. Consultation and Engagement Rhian Foote Consultation Co-ordinator
  2. 2. Consultation and Engagement within the Council Consultation and engagement takes place across the Authority at all levels of the engagement spectrum. The following diagram summarises the various levels on which the Council is involved, provides examples of current practice and identifies links.
  3. 3. <ul><li>Current Picture </li></ul><ul><li>As an authority we have a duty to consult and engage with the residents we provide services for. We engage and consult to assist with: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Planning our services and making them more cost effective </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Citizen Centred Service Delivery </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The development of new ideas </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Improving local democracy and feelings of involvement </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The development of better policies and priorities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Challenging discrimination and ensure equality </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Meet legal obligations e.g. Local Government Measure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide efficient and effective services </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Decision making process </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Consultation Strategy <ul><li>The City and County of Swansea has a Consultation Strategy in place since 2002 </li></ul><ul><li>The current Consultation Strategy 2005 – 09: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Long term approach for consultation within the Council. It demonstrates the Council’s commitment to listening to the views and opinions of stakeholders (including employees). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Lead the community by being accessible and accountable and engaging openly and honestly with local people, groups and organisations’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Through effective consultation with the residents of the County and employees of the Council, we can inform developments to improve the access, quality and delivery of our services and the decisions we make </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ensuring effective and inclusive consultation within the council, and outcomes of the consultation are fed into decision making process </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Consultation within the Council Corporate Consultation Examples of Service led Consultation <ul><li>Corporate Lead </li></ul><ul><li>Consultation Co-ordinator </li></ul><ul><li>Mechanisms </li></ul><ul><li>Swansea Voices </li></ul><ul><li>City Centre User Survey </li></ul><ul><li>Chief Executive Staff Focus Group </li></ul><ul><li>Consultation Areas </li></ul><ul><li>Budget Consultation </li></ul><ul><li>Local government measure </li></ul><ul><li>Supporting elements </li></ul><ul><li>Swansea Consultation Database </li></ul><ul><li>Swansea Consultation Partnership </li></ul><ul><li>Consultation Champions </li></ul><ul><li>Consultation Toolkit </li></ul><ul><li>Swansea Young People’s Voice </li></ul><ul><li>Network 50+ and HSCWB forum </li></ul><ul><li>CYP participation group </li></ul><ul><li>Tenant participation strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Disability Forum </li></ul><ul><li>Culture and Tourism </li></ul><ul><li>Social Services </li></ul><ul><li>Business Forum </li></ul><ul><li>One-off service specific surveys </li></ul><ul><li>Transport forum </li></ul><ul><li>Other service led consultation </li></ul>
  6. 6. Consultation within the Council : Consultation and Engagement Review <ul><li>We have been working with Service Areas to undertake a review of consultation and engagement across the authority. The review identified some areas for development: </li></ul><ul><li>Improved efficiency and effectiveness of Consultation and engagement activity </li></ul><ul><li>Increased central co-ordination </li></ul><ul><li>Merging Activity </li></ul><ul><li>Developing Partnership working </li></ul><ul><li>Improved links to decision making and effective feedback </li></ul>
  7. 7. Current Consultation Mechanisms: Swansea Voices <ul><li>The panel is made up of 1250 panellists who represent a cross-section of City and County of Swansea residents aged 16 plus, based on: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Age </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gender </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Economic activity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Housing type </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Disability, ethnicity, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Panel membership is continuously refreshed and we aim to replace a third each year. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Current Consultation Mechanisms: Swansea Voices <ul><li>Is the turnout for Swansea Voices what should be expected for a panel of this size and type? </li></ul><ul><li>Panellists are sent 3 surveys per year, response rates vary from between 55 % – 75%. Ipsos Mori, a leading research company, recommend that a successful citizens panel should be operating at 55% or more. Compared with other postal surveys, who are likely not only to cost more money to undertake, but will receive on average a response rate of around 20%. </li></ul><ul><li>At what point does the turnout undermine the validity of the results? </li></ul><ul><li>A number of measures are in place to ensure the representativeness and validity of the results obtained from the panel. A response rate from a survey of less than 45% would be the point at where the validity would be at risk. Since the panel has been in operation we have never dropped below a 55% response rate. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Current Consultation Mechanisms: Swansea Voices <ul><li>Who undertakes selection and induction of new panel members? </li></ul><ul><li>Recruitment and selection of new panellist is undertake by a local company Opinion Research Services. We aim to replenish 1/3 of the panel every year to ensure that response rates remain high. Panellist are removed from the panel after 3 years, when they have not responded to 3 or more surveys, or by request. </li></ul><ul><li>Is this type of panel the appropriate mechanism given the new </li></ul><ul><li>technologies now available (e.g. text phone)? </li></ul><ul><li>Reviewing the appropriate use of Swansea voices, along with our other mechanisms was one of the development areas identified in the Consultation and Engagement review. </li></ul><ul><li>When planning a consultation the following should be considered when choosing most appropriate method: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Consultation Topic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Target Group (e.g. CYP – text/online may be more appropriate) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What will the results be used for? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Resources available </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>The current Consultation strategy is up for review, the new strategy will focus on: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Consultation and Engagement objectives for Swansea </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consultation and Engagement Principles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Corporate Consultation Priorities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Corporate Co-ordination </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consultation Mechanisms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Partnership working </li></ul></ul>Developing a new Consultation and Engagement Strategy
  11. 11. <ul><ul><li>What is the role of Overview and Scrutiny as a mechanism for Consultation and engagement and how can this be reflected in the new strategy? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the role of members, on behalf of/with their communities, as a mechanism for Consultation and engagement and how can this be reflected in the new strategy? </li></ul></ul>Developing a new Consultation and Engagement Strategy
  12. 12. <ul><ul><ul><li>Any Questions? </li></ul></ul></ul>