DISC Update September 2013. Criminal Justice, NIC etc. All in Criminal Justice now seem to be waiting for the PQQ and further details on funding PBR etc. There is still plenty of debate around about whether the new funding mechanism will work and what needs to be done. e.g. NPC “ The relationship between commissioners and service providers has been compared to a dance. When it goes well, providers anticipate the commissioner’s lead and it’s all very graceful. But when it goes badly there’s confusion and they stand on each other’s toes. Even before the music begins to play, there’s the tricky business of finding someone to dance with. Right now, with the Transforming Rehabilitation reforms, the band’s starting up and prospective partners are tentatively asking each other, ‘are ye dancin?’ So how will commissioners make their choice? Being able to demonstrate your impact will certainly play a part, but charities often find it hard to anticipate commissioners’ evidence needs. For example, our recent survey of criminal justice charities showed that 96% would welcome more information about commissioners’ requirements. In response, we’ve been speaking to commissioners and asking them what they think makes good evidence. Here are the key messages: 1) There’s recognition that statistical evidence of impact on reoffending is very hard to obtain. So while it would be valuable to have—and the Justice Data Lab is a great opportunity—it is still perfectly possible to be commissioned without it. 2) Few organisations can rehabilitate offenders by themselves and there is no “silver bullet”. A range of providers are expected to contribute to offenders’ journeys from crime, which makes an 1
understanding of intermediate outcomes or ‘pathways’ important (we suggest looking at the NOMS Commissioning Intentions document for more information). Above all, commissioners want to work with providers who can articulate the intermediate outcomes they are aiming for, how these will reduce offending and how their service will achieve them. 3) Commissioners seem more interested in what the evidence shows, than the standard of evidence or methodology used. They’re looking for a diverse mixture of sources (quantitative and qualitative), alongside an impartial assessment and reasonable conclusions. So we’ve compiled a checklist of some of the specific areas providers should present evidence on; •
Information on client groups targeted and previous experience working with them.
An understanding of the issues impacting on re-offending for this group, and what existing evidence suggests are the best solutions.
What the service aims to achieve and how—we refer to this as a ‘theory of change’.
The uniqueness, values, passion of the organisation.
Assurance about your track record, such as data on levels of engagement with previous projects.
A realistic account of resources, scale and geographical coverage. Ideally, this might include other sources of funding you can bring to the contract. Another message is not to over-promise; to start small and build a relationship with the commissioner over time.
An accurate assessment of costs and value for money (and recognition that services will be delivered within a limited funding regime).
Understanding of how your contribution will complement other services, and previous experience of working in partnership.
The ability to be flexible and adaptive. For example, strategies for dealing with challenging cases.
Systems for assessing whether projects have been successful and how you use evidence to continuously improve.
The ability to innovate, to have new ideas and to feedback to 2
commissioners when you think they are wrong. Within this list different commissioners do emphasise different areas, but one thing they all agree on is the need to act quickly. Contract negotiations for Transforming Rehabilitation will take place during autumn 2013, so to avoid ending up as a wallflower, providers should be marshaling and communicating their evidence as soon as possible. A longer version of this article looking at evidence from different perspectives is available here.” -The Social Market Foundation makes comment on the perverse results that could be possible:“Think tank report says payment structure proposed by Ministry of Justice will leave providers out of pocket unless they reduce reoffending by about 4 per cent Charities are in danger of losing money under the Ministry of Justice’s payment-by-results proposals for reducing reoffending, an analysis by the think tank Social Market Foundation suggests. The report, Paying for Results, published on Friday, examines the MoJ’s plans to open up probation services to providers from the private and voluntary, community and social enterprise sectors in 21 contract areas across the UK. Under the draft plans drawn up by the MoJ, a proportion of the contract will be paid on a PbR basis, which is intended to reward reductions in reoffending and encourage providers to innovate and take risks. But the SMF’s analysis found that, as a result of the government’s proposals to protect itself against statistical "noise" – when the level of variation could be due to chance rather than the provider’s intervention – spending money on reducing reoffending could leave providers worse off than if they had spent nothing at all. Jeremy Wright, the justice minister, strongly disputed the SMF’s claims, saying it was "utter nonsense" that providers would be penalised for trying to achieve results. The think tank’s analysis finds that providers would have to seek to achieve a reduction in reoffending of about 4 per cent to make any money at all, and that achieving smaller improvements would result 3
in financial losses. Cutting costs and allowing reoffending to increase by up to 3 per cent would be more profitable. This is because of a "flat payment zone" built into the payment mechanism to protect the government against accusations of paying for apparent reductions in reoffending that are in fact the result of statistical flukes. Ian Mulheirn, the author of the paper and the SMF’s director, said: "PbR in reoffending makes a lot of sense in principle and many elements of the government’s proposed scheme are good. But the payment proposals look set to wreck the financial incentives that providers and investors need to make this scheme work. "By designing the system with a flat payment zone, the MoJ has effectively made it all but impossible for providers to achieve results good enough to get paid, without investors taking on impossibly high financial risks. The result will be that they simply won’t try."
But Wright said: "It is utter nonsense that providers will be penalised for trying to achieve results. This report seems to recommend giving providers an easy ride and handing over taxpayers’ money for negligible improvements. "As the public would rightly expect, our targets are challenging: we want to see providers achieve a real reduction in reoffending, delivering longterm and sustained benefits across England and Wales, and making our communities safer." Wright pointed to early data from the PbR pilot at HM Prison Peterborough, which has seen an 8 per cent fall in reconvictions among offenders released between September 2010 and June 2012 from the figures for September 2008 to June 2010”.
Richard Johnson has made further comment based on the above report:“The contracts, as currently proposed, will not incentivise investment in the extension/transformation of services to reduce reoffending. At best, they will maintain current levels – assuming it can be decided what measure of reoffending to apply, based on what geographies, tracked in what way. If a contractor takes over a probation area that is currently very successful, how can they be rewarded for performance 4
improvement, when compared with a contractor taking over an area that is currently failing? I do not believe contractors will cynically plan for an increase in recidivism, but they will not perceive these contracts as a ‘rehabilitation revolution’ – they are simply about the outsourcing of probation, with an emphasis on price competition. If there is any ‘value for money’ in the contracts, it will be derived from short-term savings at the risk of long-term rises in reoffending (and all the costs associated with that). There had been a hope that social investment might fund a new focus on rehabilitation. The SMF report clearly demonstrates that there is inadequate potential reward to attract such investment. There is also a paucity of robust statistical data on which any business case to investors could be constructed. A small number of pilots might have provided such data, instead of this rapid national rollout.The MoJ must seriously consider this SMF modeling and their suggestions for changes to the payment structure. There is no denying the need to tackle recidivism rates, but hasty, commercially naïve contracting will have the opposite effect.” --
There is also continuing commentary on how the Rehabilitation Programme might actually increase the number of people in prison :“Ministers are proposing to put all offenders, even those who are only jailed for a few months, under one year’s supervision in the community after they released. A Whitehall impact assessment published by the Ministry of Justice has disclosed that officials are expecting the changes to result in more than 1,000 criminals being jailed every month. Campaigners said the disclosure that so many criminals were likely to be put back into prison was “frightening” and a “recipe for disaster”. At the moment only offenders sentenced to 12 months or more have to undergo supervision in the community. This can include regular meetings with probation staff to help them with drink and drug problems, as well as with finding a home or job. But under the Offender Rehabilitation Bill the monitoring will be extended to all offenders, a change which is likely to lead to 13,000 5
offenders “recalled or committee to custody”, according to the impact assessment. In turn the Ministry of Justice estimates that this will force prisons to find another 600 prison places to house them, at a cost of £16million a year. Juliet Lyon, director of the Prison Reform Trust, said: “This impact statement is frightening both in the information it contains about a massive hike in prison numbers and the information it withholds about the cost of supervising tens of thousands of people on release'. Andrew Neilson, Director of Campaigns at the Howard League for Penal Reform, said that the policy risked being a “recipe for disaster”. He said: “If the answer is further savings to prison and probation budgets then it makes a mockery of the government’s commitment to rehabilitation. “If prisoners miss appointments or are late for curfews then the Ministry of Justice now admits most will be returned to prison for things that are not in themselves crimes.” -Meanwhile Nick Hurd, at the Cabinet Office, has attacked the attitude of the VCS towards the Work Programme and Rehabilitation Revolution “Too many civil society organisations saw the Work Programme as a “funding exercise” rather than a means of getting people into work, Nick Hurd  said this week. Speaking at an event on Wednesday hosted by Bates Wells Braithwaite  and E3M to discuss the progress of the Offender Rehabilitation Bill, the minister for civil society said he wanted to be really clear that the probation service reforms are “not a funding exercise for the sector”. He said that too much of the “noise” around the Work Programme had sounded to him like a sense of entitlement from the voluntary sector that the programme had been designed as a funding exercise. It wasn’t, he said – it was about getting people into work. So now civil society groups must not treat the new offender rehabilitation contracts as a similar funding exercise, Hurd warned. “They are about reforming a system that is failing, where 50 per cent of offenders coming out of jail reoffend within 12 months, at a cost of between £9bn and £13bn a year.” He insisted the government had learned lessons from the Work 6
Programme and added that prospective civil society contractors in the new programme must do so too. They must ensure they get involved with their “eyes wide open”, he said. The Ministry of Justice would be “absolutely agnostic” about who it commissions to carry out the contracts, so civil society bodies must not expect any special treatment. They should be well aware that the Transforming Rehabilitation programme would be a very big, complex and challenging process that will be demanding on many levels – the timescales, the enormity of the programme, and the payment-by-results fee model”.
Other Criminal Justice developments. Mike Maiden, who we knew as a Durham ACPO has got the top job in what will remain of the Probation Service. :“Two people have been appointed to head up the new National Probation Service (NPS), the public sector body tasked with protecting the public from the most dangerous offenders in England and Wales, Justice Minister Jeremy Wright announced today. Mike Maiden, former Chief Executive of Staffordshire and West Midlands Probation Trust, will undertake the role of Director of Probation, leading the National Probation Service in England and Sarah Payne, current Chief Executive of Wales Probation Trust, will take up the post as Director National Offender Management Service (NOMS), Wales. Her role will also include overarching responsibility for public and private prisons and contractual oversight of private sector prison delivery in Wales”. -Services are still being commissioned to help the smaller voluntary sector get involved in the Rehabilitation Programme:“Acevo and the National Council for Voluntary Organisations will use a £150,000 government grant to help charities bid for Ministry of Justice contracts to reduce crime and rehabilitate offenders. The infrastructure organisations will work with Candour Collaborations, a consultancy, to deliver 57 workshops in England and Wales to help third sector organisations with aspects of contract bids. 7
The workshops will help charities to apply for, negotiate and deliver rehabilitation contracts and will include sessions on measuring the cost of delivery and demonstrating the impact of their work” -There has been a little more information on the St Giles Trust Pilot which I won’t bore you with the details of but the provider has commented that:“Movements in the baseline prior to the intervention are closer to the movements in the Peterborough cohort, in other words the baseline appears to explain more of the movement in the Peterborough data. So it gives us greater confidence that we are seeing an intervention effect. It also gives us a degree of greater confidence that we will get paid. The previous data ended with Peterborough’s frequency number equaling the national average. This one ends with Peterborough at least improving upon it. The propensity score matching process should bring out a comparison cohort that is even more similar, but of course we still haven’t tried it. So, is it time to pop open the champagne and celebrate? Not yet. This is good news, but it is still only on six month data. We will be measured on whether we reduce offending over twelve months. What we can say is that our intervention appears to at least delay reoffending behaviour. We should also say, this is only the first cohort of the first Social Impact Bond. It is incredibly early days so drawing significant conclusions at this stage is premature. On the other hand, we are learning and developing all the time, so the fact that we see a significant impact on such an early group is clearly exciting. So is this data good, or mixed as some have reported? We are cautious, because this is early days and early data. It isn’t a randomised control trial, sure. Nor is it the formal comparison cohort that will be developed for payment purposes using propensity score matching. But this is very positive data, on the best available information” -Meanwhile SERCO and G4S have been getting plastered over the media across the summer about having their hands in the till:-
“Justice Secretary Chris Grayling has accused G4S of overcharging for tagging Whether you are a fan or foe of outsourcing public services, it is impossible to ignore the government's dependence on the private sector to operate and manage swathes of what it does. And given the many billions of pounds of contracts awarded to the likes of Serco, Capita, MITIE, ATOS and G4S - along with the big accounting firms - by all Whitehall departments and much of local government, that is not going to change in a hurry, if ever. So it felt like quite a big moment when Chris Grayling, the justice secretary, last week put the boot into G4S and Serco, accusing them of charging too much for the business of putting electronic tags on criminals. On contracts worth more than £100m a year, both were chastised for "wholly indefensible and unacceptable practices" in taking taxpayers' money for tags on individuals who were in prison, or were dead or no longer had to be monitored for other reasons. Although Mr Grayling did not specify the scale of the overcharging, it was widely reported to have run to many tens of millions of pounds over the past eight years. G4S was characterised as refusing to cooperate with the justice department's own probe, or rather one it had subcontracted to the accountants PwC, and Mr Grayling said that he had therefore felt obliged to ask the Serious Fraud Office to investigate it”. Serco have been in trouble about their service delivery elsewhere:“Serco, the leading private contractor of services to the public sector, has come under attack for its "substandard" GP out-ofhours service in Cornwall, in a report published by the influential parliamentary public accounts committee  on Thursday. The company falsified figures  on its performance 252 times, making it look better than it was, so that serious failings in the service only came to light thanks to whistleblowers, MPs say, yet the company's response was "bullying and heavy-handed". “critics have claimed that the Thameside prison in London is proof of the disadvantages of handing such a deal to the private sector. HM Inspectorate of Prisons (HMIP) has reported that there is too much violence in the prison that the staff is unable to manage. The 9
Serco-run prison underwent a lock-down, resulting in some prisoners spending 23 hours every day in their cell HMIP said: "The prison had taken the unusual step of effectively locking down the prison, severely curtailing the regime and in particular prisoner access to time unlocked. The prison had done little to evaluate the success of this quite extreme strategy and at the time of our visit there seemed only vague plans to restore the prison to normality. The data on assaults, security report reports and use of force that we examined did not show any improvement from previous months and we were told that some prisoners got around restrictions by planning to attend activities so that they could become involved in fights." As I wrote this section I was going to say –“Will all the above prevent Serco and G4S participating in the Rehabilitation Revolution – I doubt it”. Then I read this yesterday !
“The justice secretary is to allow two security companies to bid for Ministry of Justice contracts despite both facing alleged fraud investigations over existing deals. Chris Grayling has not ruled Serco and G4S out of the running for new MoJ contracts, which include the £800m privatisation of most probation services. But he has for the first time assured his Labour counterpart, Sadiq Khan, that no new contracts will be awarded to either company until a series of official "forensic audits" has given them a clean bill of health. The official publication of invitations to bid for the privatisation of the bulk of the probation service is due soon. Both companies are leading contenders for the payment-by-results contracts under which 235,000 offenders are to be supervised each year. City analysts see few other large-scale players able or willing to bid for the work if Serco and G4S are excluded. Grayling told Khan last week: "I am strongly of the view that we should not award new contracts for the two companies until we have established the facts about both their performance and their corporate behaviour. That is why I have requested an audit of 10
every contract that MoJ holds with G4S and Serco. "It is important to note that MoJ will not award new contracts to the companies unless this audit work is completed to our satisfaction. However, I do not intend to prejudge the outcome of this process at this stage by excluding the two companies from participating in the current competitions." Grayling said a decision would be taken only once the audits had been completed”.
-Working Links have joined the group of primes setting themselves up to bid for the Rehabilitation programme and are advertising for sub-contractors. --
The move towards Resettlement Prisons seems to be going ahead http://www.scoop.it/t/probation-review/p/4004233642/list-of-70resettlement-prisons-in-full
-Some limited finance has been made available to help Probation Service mutual spin outs.:“The first support contracts have been signed to help probation trusts spin out and bid for new contracts. The Cabinet Office is supporting probation staff who are considering ‘spinning out’ of probation trusts into mutual organisations and has now signed the first contracts with suppliers providing over £500,000 of specialist support. The first cohort includes 7 spin outs covering 12 probation trusts. This means that groups of staff from within more than a third of the UK’s 35 probation trusts are actively preparing to bid for services in the national competition for rehabilitation services - which the Ministry of Justice plans to roll out by early 2015. -Meanwhile the first Probation Service spin out has been established:“LAURUS Development has become the first public probation 11
sector body in the UK to make the move into the private sector with the establishment of a new mutual. We offer professional training, assessments, qualifications and management and organisational development to all existing and new providers. With a proven track record in developing the professional competence of those working at all levels in the justice sector, LAURUS Development offers competency based learning and a variety of products based on National Occupational Standards. In addition, an integral approved Assessment Centre, LAURUS Development Awards, offers qualifications ranging from those on the Probation Qualifications Framework to those emerging in response to changing demand, on the Qualification Credit Framework. The complement of services also extends to support recruitment and selection, e-learning and management development including a four day leadership programme which can be progressed to Masters level in conjunction with Newcastle Business School”. -Government seem to be plugging the notion of mutual spin outs but others are voicing their concerns:As they launch guidance on public sector spin-outs, Co-operatives UK and the TUC, led by Frances O'Grady, say that staff should be balloted about mutualisation. The government has forced employees to leave the public sector and join mutuals against their will, according to Co-operatives UK and the Trades Union Congress. The two organisations, the umbrella bodies for cooperatives and trade unions respectively, have today published best-practice guidance on public sector spin-outs that says any new mutual should be agreed by a ballot of staff. "Government plans to outsource public service provision to independent employee-led mutuals should be subject to a ballot of employees and not be forced through against their will," the two organisations said in a joint statement to accompany the launch -I thought this item might be of interest to Mental Health Concern and Spectrum. “As the Working in Partnership category winner at the recent Probation Awards, Carolyn Maclean, of Leicestershire & Rutland Probation Trust, knows the value of effective collaboration. Teaming up with Leicestershire Police and the Leicestershire Partnership Trust, she secured over £500,000 in Department of Health funding to start up the Criminal Justice Liaison and Diversion Service for 12
offenders with mental health issues and learning disabilities and filling a gap in provision”. Dunno what’s happening with Ralph at ACEVO, but his job has recently been advertised:Director of Policy ACEVO King's Cross, London £50K pa Permanent Closing Date: 06/10/2013 Reference: ADOP Social Finance The Social Market Foundation has released a report which seems to get to the heart of some of the problems with SIBS : Despite their enthusiasm for SIBs, the report authors - Nigel Keohane, Ian Mulheirn and Ryan Shorthouse – identify some key barriers which they summarise neatly: “The very high degree of uncertainty surrounding new interventions, combined with the measurement problems of small-scale projects, ratchets up the level of reward payments needed to attract investors in large numbers.” They go on to note that early adopters face disproportionately large set-up costs and that the risk aversion of both commissioners and investors means that they will be nervous about meeting these costs – making it difficult to develop investable propositions. The SMF sees a key role for government which, as I noted in the introduction, probably has most to gain from a growth in the number of Social Impact Bonds. They make a number of specific (and, to me, highly appropriate) recommendations calling on the Government to: • • •
Improve outcomes measurement, Strengthen the attribution of interventions to outcomes, and Facilitate more evaluation about what kinds of interventions work. They conclude that standardising some aspects of SIB development would reduce costs. 13
At the moment, the Social Market Foundation and I share the view that SIBs will not become commonplace until their costs are reduced substantially. Most of the current SIB-funded projects are highly subsidised either by philanthropic trusts (the ONE Project) or the government (most of the others). The only other way to reduce costs is for commissioners to subsidise SIBs by offering large enough financial rewards to encourage investors. Of course, once we go down this road, Social Impact Bonds do a quick about-turn from being a lever to reduce governmental spending to becoming a waste of public funds. It will be interesting to see whether the government listens to these concerns or if Social Impact Bonds are destined to become a niche product favoured only by philanthropists in small scale new initiatives. -The SIB Market is growing apparently, but perhaps not in the right way for NIC and similar ventures. “The social investment market has grown by 22 per cent in a year to £202m, with secured loans making up 90 per cent of the market by value, according to a report released today. Growing the Social Investment Market: The Landscape and Economic Impact, analysed social investment intermediaries activity in the market and social ventures who have received social investment. It found that in 2011/12, the UK social investment market grew by 22 per cent from £165m in 2010/11 to £202m through 765 deals. However, the deals were concentrated within thirteen organisations, accounting for 97 per cent of the market by value. Secured lending is the dominant type of finance by market value, growing from 84 per cent in 2010/11 to 90 per cent in 2011/12 (£182m in total). In terms of volume it accounted for 59 per cent of the market. Whereas unsecured lending has almost halved in value since 2010/11 from 11 per cent to 5 per cent of the market this year (just over £10m). In terms of volume it accounted for 32 per cent of the market. The average interest rates charged on secured loans is 7.4 per cent, while it is 8.4 per cent for unsecured loans. The report calls the similarity of rates of return for secured and unsecured loans 14
“puzzling” and “contradictory.” i.e. a small group of organisations are dominating the market and, even more critically, most of it is for secured loans, which from what I have read elsewhere is mainly property such as that taken out by SCOPE to develop supported living projects. This SIB issue has been taken up by Tomorrows people and others in a recent publication:“The issue of lack of high-risk unsecured social investment, typically sought by start-ups and smaller organisations, was also identified last week at an event organised by Tomorrow’s People and CIC Can Cook to launch the report Can Social Finance Meet Social Need. Matt Robinson, director of strategy and market development, at Big Society Capital , said there was not enough builder finance in the social investment market: “Rhetoric is running ahead of reality,” he said. “Big Society Capital  is guilty of this. I agree the tone and culture of the social investment industry has to be a right mix between finance and social. We are not there at the moment.” He suggested a solution could be a blend of grant and investment capital to create convertible grants which converts to repayable capital when the business could afford it. “We are looking at models with the Big Lottery Fund on this,” he said. He also said Big Society Capital  could move some of its capital into grant funding, but said this was not straighforward. “We’d need agreement from the Big Society Capital  trust, the Merlin banks and government.” But he added that there was also a fundamental question about tapping into deeper pools of capital. "Institutional and private investors want their money back," he said. "Sustainability is important."The report Can Social Finance Meet Social Need argues that currently there is no provision in the social investment market for small early stage social enterprises and calls on Big Society Capital  to think more creatively about the role they can play in this area. Growing the Social Investment Market: The Landscape and Economic Impact, authored by ICF GHK in association with BMG Research, was jointly commissioned by the City of London Corporation, Big Lottery Fund, Big Society Capital , and Her Majesty’s government.” -Despite or perhaps because of the above, the government is 15
supporting the notion more and more and has now pulled the Big Lottery into combining forces with it’s own funding, a type of approach which puts the Big Lottery increasingly another servant of government as I have pointed out before:The Cabinet Office’s Social Outcomes Fund and the Big Lottery Fund’s Commissioning Better Outcomes with a joint mission to help develop more Social Impact Bonds (SIBs) are now open. There is growing interest among public sector commissioners in the potential of SIBs to tackle complex and expensive social issues. Commissioning Better Outcomes and the Social Outcomes Fund have a joint overarching aim to support the development of more SIBs, however, each fund has its own specific focus that reflects the respective missions of the Big Lottery Fund and the Cabinet Office. As many of the objectives for the two funds overlap and complement each other, there will be a single application process with common forms to make applying as simple as possible Applicants follow a two stage application process consisting of an expression of interest (EoI) and, once this is approved, a full application. Applicants with an approved expression of interest also have the option of applying for development funding to purchase technical support to develop their project. Commissioners, providers or intermediaries can all submit an expression of interest, but we expect full applications to be from a commissioning organisation (typically a public sector organisation). For example: a Local Authority, seeking to improve outcomes for troubled families. a Central Government Department, seeking to reduce problem drug use. a Clinical Commissioning Group, seeking to reduce hospitalisation of the elderly. a Police and Crime Commissioner, seeking to reduce gang membership”.
Meanwhile other organisations are making use of the ICRF funding to develop their work with offenders”-
“A grant of £149,300 from the Investment and Contract Readiness Fund is helping Midlands Together raise £3m to provide supported 16
paid work, skills training and tailored mentoring for nearly 150 exoffenders. They will acquire new skills, build their confidence and become work-ready by helping renovate over 70 vacant properties in Birmingham, Staffordshire, Worcestershire and the West Midlands to bring them back into use. As a start-up it was essential that Midlands Together had the right support and advice to develop its offer to investors, and a grant from the Fund allowed them to bring in crucial corporate finance expertise from Triodos which included help with structuring the bond and putting together the bond’s investment memorandum”.
Charity cuts, mergers and news. Spending Review. In response to the chancellor’s spending review today (Wednesday 26th), ACEVO Chief Executive Sir Stephen Bubb warned of continuing tough times for the sector and its beneficiaries, noting *recent estimates that that a further £26bn of cuts will be needed by 2018 on top of those announced today. He called for a renewed emphasis on public service reform to mitigate the impact of cuts, and urged the government to ensure that local government cuts are not passed disproportionately onto the voluntary sector. In response to the spending review statement, Sir Stephen said: “This Spending Review serves as a stark reminder that tough times are set to continue for the voluntary sector and its beneficiaries. The additional £4 billion of welfare savings will impact the sector’s beneficiaries and increase demand for our services at a time of restricted finances. The further 10% cuts to funding for the Department for Communities and Local Government, on top of 50% real-terms cuts since 2010, will have significant repercussions for voluntary sector income. The Department for Communities and Local Government must enforce the Best Value Statutory Guidance ensure that councils do not seek to burden the voluntary sector with disproportionate cuts. -Action for Children’s income fell by nine per cent from £198m to £180m in the year to March 2013, according to its annual report and accounts filed this week. The charity experienced falls in all major sources of income. Income from charitable activities - chiefly public sector contracts supporting children, families and young people - fell from £161.1m to £157.5m. Fundraised income fell from £20.2m to £18.1m, and 17
investment income from £21.1m to £19.2m.The charity raised £14.7m in 2012 from the sale of fixed assets compared with £3.3m in 2013. -Age UK expects to make up to 90 redundancies by the end of September, the charity said. In a statement from the charity, Tom Wright, group chief executive of Age UK, said: "We have completed a three-month collective consultation that ended in June 2013 and to date there have been 73 redundancies – 14 of these voluntary. We anticipate this reaching a total of 85 to 90 by the end of September." Wright said this comprised about three per cent of all staff, from a total workforce of 2,400. -The international health charity Merlin  has become part of Save the Children , the two organisations have announced today. the move was being made "to secure the long-term future" of the work of the charity, which had income of £68.9m in the year to 31 December 201 -Skills – Third Sector, the charity set up in 2008 to improve the skills of the voluntary sector workforce, has had its grant from the Office for Civil Society reduced by 50 per cent this year. The organisation received funding from the OCS of £250,000 in 2012/13. But Keith Mogford, its chief executive, said it had been awarded only £125,000 for 2013/14 -Money from the Better Futures fund is intended to tackle the root causes of the 2011 riots by dealing with issues on some of England's most deprived estates. The Clothworkers’ Foundation has awarded the YMCA and Catch22 funding worth £300,000 each to tackle the root causes of the August 2011 riots.
-HSBC announces £30m donation to UK youth charities Charities including The Prince’s Trust will be able to help a further 25,000 young people into work or training, following the investment announcement from HSBC.HSBC has announced a £30m investment in four UK youth charities, including The Prince’s Trust, 18
to help disadvantaged young people find work. The bank’s new Opportunity Partnership is a collaboration between The Prince’s Trust, Catch22, St Giles Trust and Tomorrow’s People to support 25,000 young people into work or training over the next three years. All four charities will expand their existing, proven-towork programmes to help unemployed young people gain the skills and experience they need to find work. -An organisation tasked by David Cameron  with bringing to life his "big society" vision has recently been given an extra £1m of public money, despite a catalogue of failures revealed in documents shown to the Observer. The Big Society Network (BSN), which was launched by the prime minister in 2010 , failed so badly to deliver one project that the Cabinet Office refused to pay a final cash installment. The documents also reveal that even a first meeting of the BSN's advisory board on a project to encourage healthier lifestyles among children was delayed by two months due to "unforeseen circumstances" and holidays. The Cabinet Office subsequently refused to hand over the final £100,000 of a £300,000 grant and decided to "end support" due to the slow progress in even setting up a website for the project. Despite this, the BSN's charitable arm, the Society Network Foundation (SNF), subsequently received £1m from the Big Lottery Fund , which distributes lottery money to community projects, and £150,000 from the Cabinet Office, bringing its total public funding to nearly £3m. The Big Lottery Fund did not offer other organisations the opportunity to bid for the cash. They always seem to look after their own. Local Government. Community budgets are still around and evolving (or at least changing names). “The first 9 areas to be championed by the Public Services Transformation Network were announced today (3 July 2013) by Eric Pickles.
Mr Pickles said the areas would receive dedicated support to help them develop practical reforms and deliver better services for less at a local level. The Prime Minister has called on all public service leaders to work together more effectively to ensure that local services meet the needs of local people. In a keynote speech, Eric Pickles said: “ We’ve only just dipped our toes in the waters of the possible. Nationally, Local Government Association research found that the partnership approach could save billions not millions. So we are now expanding this in many more directions. “ Our Public Transformation Network will spread the opportunities created by Community Budgets around the country, leading to more joint working and shared services. “ Today I’m pleased to announce the first 9 areas that will receive innovative support to help them break down the barriers and focus on people’s issues rather than public structures.” The network will be made up of people with expertise from across the public and private sectors to provide direct links between government departments, councils and local places. The 9 new areas chosen are: • • • • • • • • •
Bath and North East Somerset Bournemouth, Poole and Dorset Hampshire Lewisham, Lambeth and Southwark Sheffield Surrey Swindon the West London Alliance (Barnet, Brent, Ealing, Harrow, Hillingdon and Hounslow) Wirral” -Work with troubled families is also being expanded, though with the money seemingly pinched from elsewhere:“Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has announced  that an additional £200 million will be invested to start to extend intensive help under the government's troubled families programme to 400,000 high risk families.
The payment by results programme will be administered by the Department for Communities and Local Government, but funded from across Whitehall. Following a small scale pilot, prime minister David Cameron launched the programme in 2012 , pledging to turn around the lives of 120,000 troubled families by 2015. It proved to be controversial, with criticism of the definition of a troubled family and complaints that 60 per cent of the funding comes from existing hard-pressed council budgets. Funding for this new phase will come from a number of departments including Communities and Local Government, Education, Work and Pensions and Health, with full payment made only when results are achieved. The other 60 per cent will again be met by local authorities and other local partners who, the government claims, will all benefit from the savings that result”. -Joint Social and Healthcare Funding. “Health secretary Jeremy Hunt has told HSJ the government’s decision to create a £3bn joint commissioning pot for the health and social care needs of vulnerable people is a “a big game changer”. Chancellor George Osborne revealed in today’s spending review that the amount of NHS funding transferred to social care would treble in 2015-16, up from around £1bn the preceding year. In an exclusive interview with HSJ just before Mr Osborne spoke, Mr Hunt declared the decision was “a huge moment in the NHS’s history.” He said it would give birth to the NHS’s first “accountable care organisations” and introduce the idea of an accountable clinician for every vulnerable older person undergoing care outside hospitals. He added that social care would be required to move to a “seven day” working arrangement if it wanted to access the funds. The two articles below seem to paint something of a different picture. Social Care Funding. While an extra £3bn was raised while further integrating health and social care it ought to be reminded that the social care budget since 2010 has been cut by around £2.7bn – or 20 per cent. A further 10 21
per cent cut was announced to local government spending which will also impact upon social care. Further still, in pursuit of lowered social care budgets councils have been raising the eligibility criteria for support. The Association of Directors of Adult Social Services in 2012 reported that 83 per cent of councils have raised their eligibility threshold to a higher level. By 2016 government wants the national eligibility criteria to be 'substantial', which risks pushing many out of the system altogether. All the while, it is has been found in recent research by Age UK and the College of Social Work that one in five adult social workers has been pressured to minimise older people's level of need during assessment to prevent them becoming eligible for support”. -Joint Working. Despite the £3billion going into joint social/ Health care, some through the local Wellbeing Boards, Health Managers seem pessimistic about joined up working:“Little progress has been made on integrating health and social care services in England, which risks making services financially unsustainable in the future, senior NHS managers have warned. In a survey by the NHS Confederation, 93% of 185 NHS chief executives and chairs said only 'slight progress' or 'no progress' had been made towards integration with social care services provided by councils. A majority (61%) warned this could lead to services becoming unsustainable. This follows the pledge to better integrate signed by the Department of Health, the NHS and local authorities last month. The survey also found that a quarter of respondents (26%) were not confident of meeting their savings target over the next 12 months. As part of the Quality, Innovation, Productivity and Prevention programme, the NHS in England needs to make £20bn of productivity improvements by 2015. A substantial majority of respondents (83%) expected financial pressures in their organisations” Steve Johnson September 2013.