Agenda item

Future Commissioning Workshop


R Adams gave an update on the workshop which focused on the cost of living. They had received a lot of information from Jill Bills from Business Intelligence regarding life expectancy and deprivation so they could share this in the workshop. 4 main points were covered in the workshop: -


·  Support for fuel, food, and the cost-of-living crisis 

·  Anti-Social behaviour and the increase in nuisance caused 

·  Parking enforcement 

·  Careers advice / raising aspirations of 14- and 16-year-olds including information on a variety of jobs and opportunities that would not come out of regular careers advice in school 


This led onto a further workshop with Emma Robinson from Business Intelligence. The headline information was: -


·         Labour Market Profile

·         Cost of Living – The ‘squeezed middle’ and poverty

·         Impacts on wider determinants of health

·         Existing Support


  1. It explored fuel poverty including predictions and the number of households in fuel poverty as determined by the Fuel Poverty Coalition.


  1. The ‘squeezed middle’ were discussed, those who are likely to have high mortgage and childcare costs and who were not able to predict the rising costs of fuel, energy, and food.


  1. Leyla Nayeri Senior Health Improvement Officer explored excess winter deaths which indicated that even with taking care homes into account, the numbers for Darton East are far higher than elsewhere. Due to this, the team are now carrying out a piece of work with Healthwatch to explore this, along with industrial related illnesses.


  1. It was acknowledged that there is a two-way relationship between debt and health.


The main priorities were covered in point 5 of the report with high numbers of low income and life expectancy – especially in St Helens along with the percentage of households which are fuel poor.


Members discussed the sports van and questioned if it could move around areas during the summer. Food parcels again for this Christmas were noted, as it would help a lot of people in the run up to the Christmas holidays. R. Adams advised that she would take advise from the Good Food Barnsley network.  From the funding that remains it would be possible to drill down into the cost of living to see what provision can be put in place.


Cllr Hunt acknowledged that the workshop was useful but questioned would be done around the cost-of-living crisis, particularly when looking at the data regarding St Helens, but did acknowledge this will impact all 4 areas. The summer holidays will be a pinch point and another workshop needs to be arranged to decide how the Area Council will utilise the current underspend of £70,000.


Members noted that this subject has repeatedly come up over the years and it is often the financially disadvantaged who get ill.  However, it was stated that doing something is better than nothing and people need to be aware that they can get advice and support from DIAL and CAB.


It was clarified that another workshop needs to take place as it helps to focus discussions. The most needs to be done with what resources are available. Furthermore, the take up of school meals needs to be explored as it can be difficult for some families and support needs to be given to help people.


At Christmas there is a massive toy appeal in Barnsley, and this can be done alongside a temporary food bank. Last Christmas happiness hampers were put together and as an area council this can be done again. There are lots of things that can put in place and area teams were involved with the toy appeal last time. There is a lot of support in place; the new council website has lots of information and CAB are offering appointments for support. However, there does need to be improvement in communication.


It was shared with Members that York Council have a good model to deal with poverty emergency and this needs to be explored to see if the model can be adopted.


R Adams acknowledged that there is always a short-term plan in place, but the aim is to have longer term solutions. All funding cannot be spent on short term interventions without attending to longer term strategies. A workshop will be held to explore contractual commitments to see if redistribution can take place across priorities.


A directory of key information would be useful to share with people, but it has been difficult getting this all together. Although, there is a community shop in St Helens and residents from Old Town are welcome to use it. There are also distribution centres for food parcels around the town and there is the Community Pantry at Shafton Methodist Church where membership is £6 a week for around £25 worth of food. This is better for people as food parcels are only a short-term solution. The way forward is to have more community pantries, where the food comes from places similar to where Fareshare get their food from; Tesco and Marks and Spencer when they order too much produce.


R Adams noted that venues and volunteers are crucial to make the pantry models work and that it is best coming from the community as it is community run. Due to this, they would like to bring people back to discuss this in a workshop.


RESOLVED - That R Adams would explore the York Council poverty emergency model.


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