Advice services - meeting the challenge ahead

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By Fran Targett, Citizen's Advice Cymru, and Bob Chapman, Low Commission, at WCVA's Annual Conference 2013.

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Advice services - meeting the challenge ahead

  1. 1. Advice Services - meeting the challenges ahead Fran Targett November 2013
  2. 2. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead Welfare reform •£18bn package of welfare cuts planned 2011-2014 and more cuts to come … •Universal Credit •Housing Benefits •Working Age Disability benefits •Employment Support Allowance •Pensions •Child Benefit •Localised benefits – Social Fund/Welfare assistance – Council Tax reduction
  3. 3. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead How welfare is delivered •Change from RPI to CPI •Benefit up-rating •Single household payment •Digital by default •Frequency of payments •Rental payment arrangements – Definition of ‘vulnerable’ tenants •Complexity who is impacted when … •Demonstration projects
  4. 4. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead Debt and Money Advice •Growth of Payday lenders •Growth of debt for essential services •Increasing fuel prices and fuel debt •Limited responses by the financial markets to most vulnerable borrowers
  5. 5. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead Housing •Impact of ‘bedroom tax’ •Impact of other welfare reform issues •Increase in homelessness •Housing legislation increasing rights
  6. 6. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead Employment and discrimination •Increased enquiries about changing and poor terms and conditions especially zero hours contracts •Increased enquiries about redundancy •Discrimination problems underpinned by hardening public attitudes
  7. 7. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead Relationships •Vulnerable families because of worsening economic situation •Increases in enquiries about hate crimes
  8. 8. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead Responses to the Challenge Low Commission consultation •Legal aid should be viewed as part of a continuum from information through to preventative work •Ensuring the quality of all levels of service provision must be a high priority •Ensuring open and collaborative advice sector. •The UK and Welsh Governments develop National Strategy for Advice and Legal Support for 2015-20 (estimate approx. £500m required, half from UK government, half from other funders and distributed by BIG) •90% of the Fund should be used to fund local provision, with 10% for national initiatives •Local authorities should co-produce or commission local advice and legal support plans in conjunction with local not-for-profit and commercial advice agencies Final report due January 2014
  9. 9. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead Responses to the Challenge Welsh Government Advice Services Review Independent Advice Providers Forum response We need to: •resolve clients’ problems as quickly as possible •enable clients to access our services in the way they want •deliver high quality services •use our knowledge and insight to improve things for our clients and others at a policy level •ensure consistency across advice services
  10. 10. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead Responses to the Challenge Independent Advice Providers Forum response To deliver this we need: •local and/or regional advice provision networks •the development of Welsh Government /IAPF national network to ensure the strategic development of advice provision •further development of advice channels including the IAPF’s approach to new technology •move towards outcomes based commissioning and medium term funding for advice provision •a more consistent approach to quality
  11. 11. Advice Services – meeting the challenges ahead • Need? • Co-production and client preference? • Quality assurance? • Networking and collaboration • Preventative and policy work?
  12. 12. 1 Who are our clients and how do we target our help? 2 What is the breadth and depth of our advice offer? 3 What is the right shape of advice delivery channels? 4 What is the breadth and depth of our preventative, policy and campaigns offer? One Service delivery model?
  13. 13. 1 Who are our clients and how do we target our help? we are here for everyone Are our services attractive to all? we target our help by issue, wherever detriment is greatest we don’t start with any bias towards any particular group(s) that means our help reaches those who need it most
  14. 14. 2 Welfare What is the breadth of our advice offer? Money Consumer Employment Discrimination Housing We focus the breadth of our advice by issue, wherever detriment to individuals or society is greatest Assisted digital provision makes our help seamless and consistent across delivery channels and geography – so we can reach clients more easily
  15. 15. 2 3 What is the depth of our advice offer? Ensure our operating models resolve as many clients’ problems at first point of contact as possible – a staged approach Stage 1 Stage 2 Stage 3 Then we move to in-depth advice if needed Problem solved Referral between partners Problem solved Stage 4 Casework when needed Problem solved
  16. 16. 3 Stage 1 What is the right shape of our advice delivery channels? In depth face to face Face-to-face Digital In-depth phone SHIFT BETWEEN CHANNELS Phone Solved Casework Solved Solved Solved In-depth digital Solved Solved Preventative, policy and campaigns First contact
  17. 17. 4 What is the breadth and depth of our policy and campaigns offer? Influencing effectively and earlier

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