Agenda Item No
The Vale of Glamorgan Council
Cabinet: 30th July 2012
Report of the Leader
Corporate Parenting Panel
Purpose of the Report
1. To provide for the reappointment of the Council's Corporate Parenting Panel.
That the Corporate Parenting Panel be reappointed, with its membership comprising 3 Labour Members and 1 Member from each of the Llantwit First Independent, Conservative, Plaid Cymru and Independent Groups.
Reasons for the Recommendations
To facilitate the ongoing role of the Corporate Parenting Panel.
2. The Corporate Parenting Panel in its current format was appointed by Cabinet on 15th July 2009. At that time, the Cabinet agreed that the membership of Panel be increased from 3 to 7 members. In doing so, the Cabinet had taken into account, and agreed to, a recommendation from the Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health) that the membership of the Panel include all political groups.
Relevant Issues and Options
3. Elected Members and the Council as a whole have a legal and moral duty to provide the level of support, care and protection to all looked after children that any good parent would give to their own children. It is important, therefore, that this responsibility is understood and that appropriate actions to promote the well being of Looked After Children are prioritised across the Council.
4. Corporate parenting responsibilities can be delivered only when there is clear political commitment and leadership and when senior managers agree that this is a priority that can be made explicit in strategic and business planning. In order to achieve this framework for action, the Council has established the cross-party Corporate Parenting Panel. Chaired by the Executive Lead Member for Children's Services, the Panel consists of Elected Members, senior Officers and a young person representative from the LAC Young People's Forum.
5. The Corporate Parenting Panel develops an annual work programme. Recently, the following key issues have been explored:
· educational attainments of children who are looked after by the Council;
· health and well being
· advocacy services
· issues facing young people leaving care; and
· transitions for young people.
6. Key achievements of the Corporate Parenting Panel to date include:
· launch of the Corporate Parenting Handbook for Elected Members;
· gaining Cabinet approval to develop a business case with the Housing Service looking at accommodation options for young people aged 16 and 17 yrs;
· gaining Corporate Management Team approval to develop training and work experience opportunities for young people leaving care;
· ensuring establishment of the Independent Advocacy Service;
· supporting the development of the One Stop Shop for young people in partnership with the Housing Service and Llamau;
· supporting revision of the Looked After young people's information pack;
· supporting the annual Looked After Children Awards Evening;
· providing opportunities for multi-agency issues to be discussed including CAMHS, Safeguarding and Fostering and Adoption.
7. The Corporate Parenting Panel will resume its schedule of meetings from September 2012 and a new work programme will be agreed by the Panel at that time. Key issues for the Panel to consider are likely to include:
· continued development of supported accommodation for young people leaving care;
· decisions regarding the levels of support provided to young care leavers attending university;
· the likely impact of the UK Government's welfare reforms; and
· additional oversight of the key Children and Young People Services actions in the Social Services Budget Programme.
8. If the formal principles of political balance were applied to the Panel, unless the size of the Panel was increased, then not all groups could be represented. It is suggested, therefore, that the membership of the Panel comprise 3 Labour Members and 1 Member from each of the Llantwit First Independent, Conservative, Plaid Cymru and Independent Groups. This will keep the overall size of the Panel to a manageable and appropriate level.
Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)
9. There are no resource implications arising directly out of this report.
Sustainability and Climate Change Implications
10. There are no sustainability and climate change implications arising directly out of this report.
Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)
11. The Corporate Parenting Panel is a subsidiary of Cabinet. The membership of the Panel has not, historically, been taken into account in the calculation of overall political balance on the Council. Nevertheless, it is felt that it would be beneficial if all political groups continued to be represented.
Crime and Disorder Implications
Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)
Policy Framework and Budget
15. This is a matter for Executive decision.
Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)
16. This is an internal matter and, therefore, no external consultation procedure is necessary.
Relevant Scrutiny Committee
17. Social Care and Health.
Report to Cabinet: 15th July 2009.
Jeff Wyatt, Operational Manager - Democratic Services
Operational Manager (Children and Young People Services)
Director of Social Services