We Asked, You Said, We Did

Issues we have consulted on or engaged with people about and the outcomes.

We Asked

The Council proposed several changes to its existing home to school transport policy. These changes were designed to bring consistency, to unify mainstream and special needs transport, and to help manage the overall home to school transport budget.

As part of the process there was an extensive consultation with all interested parties, to which there were nearly one thousand responses.

You Said

Whilst there were mixed responses to all proposals, there were two main areas of concern.

There were significant objections to the 'safer walking routes' proposal.  This was not a policy change - having been previously agreed - but rather agreement on the implementation of the proposals to re-classify some walking routes that had previously been designated as unsafe to walk. 

Also, there were challenges regarding some of the proposed changes to transport for learners post 19 with special needs.

We Did

The initial proposals, in advance of consultation, were taken to Scrutiny in September 2017.  Subsequent to completion of consultation, the draft paper was taken again to Scrutiny in January this year in advance of going to Cabinet.

Following the responses to the safer walking routes proposal in the consultation, Scrutiny proposed that this proposal was removed from the paper.  This was endorsed by Cabinet.

The paper for Cabinet proposed six policy changes.  Although there were some objections to these policy changes, they were accepted by Scrutiny and voted through by Cabinet.  We are now entering the implementation phase.

The council has committed to continuing dialogue with partners regarding the 19-25 proposal to ensure that transport is not a barrier to the provision of education

We Asked

Warwickshire County Council (Public Health) commission local Healthwatch in Warwickshire. The current service contract is due for renewal.

A 10 week consultation started on 17th July 2017 and ended on 22nd September 2017. This asked local people including key partners in health and social care, service users and their families and carers about their views and experiences of the local Healthwatch service.

The findings will be used to shape the new service which will be implemented in 2018. 

You Said

  • Making a contribution to improving local health and social care services was a key reason for people to share their views and experiences about health and social care services. 
  • Online methods of communication were the preferred option for both providing feedback and gaining information about health and social care services. However, face to face communication was still popular, particularly for finding out about health and social care services and for those without access to the internet.
  • The most popular way in which respondents wanted to hear news about Healthwatch Warwickshire’s activities was via electronic newsletter or the Healthwatch Warwickshire website.
  • Social media was not a popular way to get or feedback information about health and social care.
  • Respondents would prefer to be involved with Healthwatch Warwickshire by providing online feedback.
  • GP surgeries and Warwickshire County Council were the most likely organisations for people to seek help and advice from about health and social care services.

We Did

Feedback from the consultation was considered at Cabinet on 9th November 2017. The report on consultation feedback and proposed service model is available here.

This information will be used to influence and shape the service specification  for the new local Healthwatch service and ensure local peoples views are integral to the service design. 
 

We Asked

Warwickshire County Council held a public consultation for eleven weeks June to September 2017 asking people to comments on proposal to redesign how services for children and families are delivered from Warwickshire in the future. 

The County Council’s budget for 0-5 services, currently delivered through Children’s Centres, has been reduced to £3.7 million a year. This, along with recognition of the changing ways people access services, required a rethink about how services are delivered to maximise help for families, increase variety of support available and reduce building maintenance costs.

The consultation proposed developing 12 Family Hubs across Warwickshire delivering services to a wider age range, up to 19 or 25 for those with special educational needs and disabilities. Expressions of interest from the community were invited about how to use the remaining centres and people were asked to share ideas about how other local venues may be used and possible outreach/spoke sites. 

You Said

1558 people provided their opinions on the proposal via the survey (of which 153 completed it on paper).  Council representatives spoke to over 300 people at public events and over 400 people at face to face opportunities including drop-ins and meetings.  Over 150 written submissions were sent and more than 7000 people signed petitions.

Key themes included:

Service provision and impact – implications of maintaining current service offer, the importance of local family support, impact on mental wellbeing and reducing social isolation, proposed change to age range, professional staff appropriately supporting volunteers, additional burden/impact on other services, sufficiency of nursery provision and school readiness.  We listened and prioritised family support, allowed a transitional period of 18 months for the changes, confirmed a commitment to focus on the first 1001 days and early years, and included volunteer coordination roles.

Service users and access – understanding needs, rural access to services, online support is not always appropriate, relationship building, first point of contact to report difficulties, Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) support and language barrier for services.  We listened and increased the number of Children and Family Centres to 14, with 2 additional ones located in the most rural district, Stratford, and confirmed an outreach model to help deliver services locally.

Location and type of building – Riversley Park in Nuneaton & Bedworth Borough was preferred as a Hub site to Abbey, Kingsway in Warwick District was preferred as a Hub site to Sydenham, Long Lawford in Rugby Borough was preferred to Oakfield.  Kenilworth, Shipston and Southam residents reported high level perinatal mental health support needs which indicated a transitional period may be necessary. Transport access barriers, alternative uses for non-Family Hub Children’s Centres, housing and population increases, safety standards of buildings, voluntary groups’ access to venues, safe space for services and disabled access.   We listened and substituted the sites as suggested by respondents and included a transitional year to support those with perinatal mental health support needs in the three identified areas.

General comments were also made questioning whether the cuts need to be made.

We Did

On 9 November 2017, Warwickshire County Council’s Cabinet voted to support the proposal as set out in the Cabinet papers – see here for full details.  On 29 November, an extraordinary meeting of the full Council considered a motion to delay the budget reduction, which was not passed.  Savings will be made from April 2018 onwards.

Proposal Decision? Rationale
Prioritisation of Family Support We propose to protect this service from reduction due to the high priority that families placed on this service during the consultation. The value of volunteers was also expressed but the point was made strongly that they cannot replace trained, skilled, professional family support staff.
Replace 'Family Hub' terminology with 'Children and Family Centres' The consultation revealed some confusion over the terminology of 'hubs' given that it was being used by a number of agencies in different contexts. The name 'Children and Family Centres' links with the current provision, which will be used as the basis for a wider age range and service offer.
Increase the number of proposed Children and Family Centres from 12 to 14 During the consultation, we heard about issues of access and rurality in Stratford District and those who responded to the consultation were against a single Centre in the east of the District (Alcester). As a result, we propose 2 additional Centres at Stratford and Lighthorne Heath, which allow access to a central and a west district centre. This is supported by evidence of need in terms of number of children in need and on Child Protection Plans and the Income Deprivation Affecting Children Index (IDACI)
Substitution of Centres in Nuneaton and Bedworth, Rugby and Warwick borough/ districts As a result of the consultation, we have revised the proposals as follows:
  Riversley Park Clinic as a preference to Abbey, particularly in relation to Special Education Needs and Disability provision
  Long Lawford in preference to Oakfield, because of rural needs and planned housing growth.
  Kingsway in preference to Sydenham, due to suitability for Children and Family Centre purposes, area of need and potential for alternative community outreach sites in Sydenham.
Transitional year for Badger Valley, Kenilworth (St John's) and Southam We recognise the large number of responses received from these areas and so we propose a transitional year. This will allow for additional work to be carried out to look at alternative options for buildings and services to address issues identified during the consultation. The consultation highlighted needs in these areas, in particular social isolation, peer/support networks and perinatal mental health. A transitional year means those facing these challenges will be able to receive appropriate support over a longer time period whilst we look at alternative options.
Confirmation of Outreach Model The reduced number of Centres means more outreach and delivery at alternative places. During the consultation we saw that outreach is already going on and we can develop this model. Also, we have received enough expressions of interest during the consultation period to make us think that there a number organisations would might like to assume responsibility for those Children Centres which, as outreach centres, could deliver Children and Family Centre services directly and/or allow access to the County Council and its partners to the Centre to provide services. We heard throughout the consultation that there is a need for services to be delivered locally when thinking about access to services, financial inclusion and a peer/support network.
Focus on 1001 days and Early Years The Smart Start, 'Reimagining our Children Centres' work and this consultation have all told us how important it is to focus on the first 1001 days. Early years 'Stay and Play' was not part of the original proposal but we have included it in the delivery model. This is as a result of consultation responses who said it was a non-stigmatising way to start accessing support services.
Transitional Approach to Making the Changes Suggestions made by Barnardos and the Parenting Project offer a helpful and co-operative way to carry out the proposals. Making the changes in phases helps make sure service users and partners are included during the design of the Children and Family Centres and the outreach centres to agree how we can deliver a whole family approach. This also shows we are committed to those who expressed concern during the consultation that their support will not be suddenly withdrawn.
Volunteer Support & Co-ordination The new model relies on building community support through peer groups and volunteering. We need to make sure that volunteers are recruited and supervised so that safeguarding is strengthened in the new proposal. The existing volunteer model was mentioned during the consultation as one which provides support to volunteers to help them to support families.

 

We Asked

Warwickshire County Council asked for views on proposed changes to Health Advocacy Services in Warwickshire: 
 
  • Access to Health Advocacy Services: Deliver the three Health Advocacy services as one service, delivered by one provider (or one partnership of providers).
  • Timescales for Service: Prioritise statutory referrals to ensure that they are seen within the appropriate statutory timescales, and have flexible response times for non-statutory referrals.
  • Partnership working with Healthwatch: Create a stronger partnership between our local Health Advocacy Services and our local Healthwatch service.

You Said

The consultation responses indicated:
  • support for merging the current three separate advocacy services into one integrated service
  • support for closer working and a stronger partnership with Healthwatch Warwickshire
  • concerns about people waiting longer for non-statutory services.

We Did

WCC used the information and suggestions from the consultation to inform the development of a new specification for the Health Advocacy Service.

We Asked

We wanted to work closely with service users, their families and key partners within health, social care, housing, employment and the criminal justice system to develop a new Drug and Alcohol service. 

A 6 week consultation took place from 12th June to 21st July 2017.

We asked respondents to indicate their level of agreement with the service principles underpinning the proposed new service model. 

You Said

Below are two examples of what you told us and what we did.
You can read the full Consultation and Cabinet report here.
 

Example 1

We asked if we should offer a range of timely and accessible information and advice to support families and carers of people with drug and alcohol issues.

You said: There is a need to provide advice and information to families and carers of people with drug and alcohol issues, and this is currently lacking.  Appropriate and timely access to support for family/friends/carers and significant others would be hugely beneficial. Access to family services should be available throughout the treatment and recovery programs.

Example 2

We asked if the Children and Young Person’s and Adult Drug and Alcohol services should deliver a joined up pathway of support for those between 1825 years.

You said: There is a need for transitional support as part of a preventative approach working to reduce long term substance misuse.  

There is a need to provide advice and information to families and carers of people with drug and alcohol issues, and this is currently lacking.  Appropriate and timely access to support for family/friends/carers and significant others would be hugely beneficial. Access to family services should be available throughout the treatment and recovery programs

We Did

Example 1

We designed a service model that places family, carers and significant others in the centre of the recovery network model alongside the service user, raising awareness of addiction and how best to support recovery. This component also includes delivering services for the family who may also need their own personal support. In addition, the service model provides access to support from independent advisors (known as advocates) to help service users and family members express views and wishes, and to help ensure their voices are heard.

Example 2

We created a service model that will deliver an integrated transition pathway for young people aged from 18-25 years and work jointly with the adult service to ensure young adults receive appropriate access, support and treatment services to meet their needs.  We also met with providers to develop a clear transition pathway and protocol, as part of the provider network, for those moving across from young people’s to adult’s service, including joint care management if required. 

The proposed service model was approved on September 7th 2017.

We Asked

A consultation took place from 12 June 2017 to 21 July 2017 to support the redesign of the current Falls Prevention service.  

We asked:

Whether to go ahead with the proposed preventing a First Fall Move Improve service?

What age group the service should be for?

You Said

Yes go ahead the service is needed and many of us would use it or signpost people to it

 Age 50 and over is too young – 55 better

A copy of the Consultation Report is available on the main page for this consultation.

We Did

Since the consultation took place, a Public Health SMT decision was taken to postpone the tendering process for this service and to integrate a redesigned service with the retender of Fitter Futures during autumn 2018 instead.  

We are in the middle of conducting a pilot project with pharmacies using the findings of the consultation to see if in practice, the service will work.  The pilot is for age 55 and over as recommended by consultees and it is a pilot offering strength and balance exercise opportunities as recommended by consultees.

We Asked

We asked for feedback on the proposals put forward in the draft Stratford-upon- Avon Transport Strategy that was jointly prepared by Warwickshire County Council and Stratford-upon-Avon District Council. The draft strategy contained a broad range of proposals designed to respond to the significant current and future challenges facing Stratford’s transport system such as congestion, air quality, pressure from housing and employment development and balancing the needs of local residents and visitors to Stratford.
 
The consultation ran for six weeks between 9 th February and the 23 rd March 2017.
 
In total, 910 responses to the consultation were received from a mix of individuals, organisations and interest groups.

You Said

Responses to the strategy were mixed. More people agreed with the proposed strategy objectives than opposed to them. In addition, the proposals for; strategic road, rail and air links; pubic transport provision; walking and cycling; and managing the impact of ccoaches and long distance buses received more support than opposition.
 
The proposals for managing traffic and travel in and through Stratford-upon- Avon and managing the impact of HGVs received more opposition than support. The opposition to these theme areas was based on objections to specific measures that proposed the construction of relief roads to the east and west of Stratford-upon- Avon.
 
A significant number of responses stated that the Stratford to Honeybourne railway line should be reinstated or further feasibility work be carried out to establish the viability of the line and that this should be reflected in the strategy.

We Did

The feedback has been reviewed and analysed and a Consultation Evaluation Report and revised draft Stratford-upon- Avon Area Transport Strategy have been published. These documents are available on the main page for this consultation. 
 
The revised strategy will be considered by Warwickshire County Council and Stratford-on-Avon District Council Cabinets and Councils in the first part of 2018.

We Asked

For your views on the soundness and legal compliance of the Minerals Plan during a consultation that ended in early 2017.

You Said

That some elements of the plan were unsound and needed to be re-assessed. In particular the overall plan requirement figure for sand and gravel was estimated to be too high based on the most up to date figures. 

We Did

Having analysed and assessed the comments from the consultation we have reviewed the overall Plan requirement figures and sought authority from Cabinet to re-consult on the plan with a lower net plan requirement. Policies within the plan have also been amended following the consultation. 

We Asked

We asked local Early Years providers for their views on proposed changes to the Early Years Funding Formula. This mechanism allocates money to the providers for them to deliver the free entitlement (15 hours per week of early education for 3 and 4 year olds). 
 
A 3 week consultation started on 17 November 2017 and ended on Friday 8 December 2017. The consultation process was framed around a set of 3 questions, covering the main areas of the Formula which had been identified for review.

You Said

A majority of providers agreed that they did not want a Quality Supplement to be introduced at this time.
 
They considered 4 options for allocating additional funding via a deprivation supplement, and split equally between retaining the supplement at its current rate and reducing it from the present rate of £1.14 to £0.53 per qualifying child per hour, with the balance of the funding being added to the general base funding rate.
 
Respondents agreed that the budget contingency should be removed and this funding used to marginally increase the universal rate for all providers.

We Did

The findings will be used to shape the new method of allocating funding which will be implemented in April 2018.
 
Feedback from the consultation was considered at Schools Forum on 15 January 2018 and at cabinet on 25 January 2018.
 
The reports presented at both meetings are available on the main page for this consultation.

We Asked

The Local Authority (LA) is currently responsible for setting school term and holiday dates for all Community and Voluntary Controlled Schools.  Academies, Foundation and Aided Schools are responsible for setting their own term dates. There is collaboration between the LA and Academies, Foundation and Aided schools which have been invited to consult on the term dates and have generally followed the Local Authority’s pattern of terms and holiday dates. 

As one of the three 2018/19 calendar options put forward for consideration was a 5 week summer holiday the decision was taken to extend the consultation to parents and other interested parties.  The consultation ran between the 15th of January 2017 and the 31st of January 2017.

You Said

In total 303 responses were received from this consultation through the online survey, directly through emails, and via general correspondence.

Of the responses, 45% were in favour of option 2 to implement a 5 week summer holiday, with many respondents citing the greater benefits to child welfare by shortening the initial autumn term into more manageable pieces.  Option 1, a six week summer holiday with Autumn half term running from 29th October 2018 to 2nd November 2018, was the second most favoured calendar option.

We Did

Feedback from the consultation was considered and whilst the more favoured option 2 was initially recommended for approval, further information received outside of the consultation period raised concerns relating to the impact of implementing option 2.  These concerns primarily concentrated around the reduction of school days during the autumn half term having an adverse impact on exam preparation for pupils, and not aligning with our neighbouring authorities many of whom decided not to adopt the 5 week summer break.

Further information on the approval of the 2018/19 School Term and Holiday dates can be found here:

We Asked

Warwickshire County Council and key strategic partners launched their second cyber crime survey to find out how safe people feel online and assess the impact that online crime is having around the county. We wanted people residing in Warwickshire to share their experiences of online crime through a series of questions.

The survey seeks to examine how the picture has changed across Warwickshire over the past 12 months and whether residents are more aware of the dangers that can be posed online and the things that they are able to do to minimise these risks.

The survey was conducted across the West Midlands region as a whole, with colleagues from the policing areas of West Midlands, West Mercia and Staffordshire all wishing to assess the impact of online crime locally, to inform future strategies and preventative work. The survey and results focus on cyber crime at an individual level, though there is clear acknowledgement that businesses are also vulnerable to these crimes.

You Said

The full report and key findings from the survey can be found here:

https://safeinwarwickshire.files.wordpress.com/2016/04/cyber-crime-survey-web-1.pdf

Key Findings include:

  • There have been nearly 15,000 successful phishing scams in Warwickshire in the last 12 months.
  • Over 5,500 residents have been a victim of an online romance scam. 9,900 have been victim of identity fraud.
  • 30,000 fell victim to viruses and malware.
  • Over 6,000 online hate crimes.
  • Other online fraud and theft equates to 21,500 victims.

Impact of the crime - The biggest impact felt by victims of cyber crime was psychological and emotional. At least £8,848,300 has been lost by Warwickshire adults as a result of cyber crime. This equates to each adult in Warwickshire losing just over £20.

Implementing cyber safety - Survey respondents suggest that the majority of residents in Warwickshire are implementing cyber safety measures.

Feeling of Risk

  • 59% of those surveyed feel at risk online.
  • 41% do not feel at risk online.
  • Less than 1% of respondents have no idea how to protect themselves online.
  • 12% are not confident that they know how to protect themselves online.
  • 67% are reasonably confident; 20% are very confident.
  • More people feel at risk, but only a small percentage of these do not know what to do at all to reduce this risk.
  • Compared to our previous survey, while a higher proportion of the public feel at risk online (44% in 2015, compared to 59% now), fewer people have no idea how they can protect themselves online (2.4% in 2015, compared to <1% now).

We Did

Cyber crime is a real problem in Warwickshire, and many people feel at risk. However, the majority also know what measures they can take to reduce this risk. If we are to use this survey to inform our work, it would suggest that focus is given to the vulnerable groups and those who do not have any knowledge of how they can protect themselves. Our definition of vulnerable groups is those whose confidence interferes with online behaviour. This is both those who are under and over-confident while online.

Cyber Safe Warwickshire Partnership

Representatives from the county, district and borough councils, Police, Trading Standards, Office for the Police and Crime Commissioner, Education, Federation of Small Businesses, Chamber of Commerce, Youth Justice, Victim Support and Neighbourhood Watch attend. They meet quarterly to update the countywide action plan in response to cyber crime across the 4 P’s (Protect, Prepare, Prevent and Pursue).

Cyber Crime Advisors

Since April 2016, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner has funded two Cyber Crime Advisors, who are hosted by Warwickshire County Council. They are tasked with raising awareness of cyber crime, providing preventative advice and signposting the public to further support and information. Their Business Crime Advisor colleague provides this service for local small and medium businesses.

The Cyber Crime Advisors are contactable via either email below; alexgloster@warwickshire.gov.uk samslemensek@warwickshire.gov.uk

The Business Crime Advisor is contactable via alexcharleswilliams@warwickshire.gov.uk

We Asked

We asked residents of Warwickshire for their help in deciding how Heritage & Culture Warwickshire budget savings should be made for the next 3 years. The options included the closure to ad hoc visitors of St Johns Museum site, reduction in the opening hours of the County Record Office and the relaunch of Market Hall Museum as the main museum site following Heritage Lottery Funded refurbishment and an additional community website for digital archives and collections.

You Said

Residents were saddened to hear of the budget saving options but overall understood the reasons behind them. The overall feedback supported the options proposed for all 3 sites although it was noted that the loss of St Johns Museum to ad hoc visitors caused considerable concern to local users.

We Did

Heritage & Culture Warwickshire implemented the proposed changes. St Johns Museum closed to ad hoc visitors on 1st April 2017 although it continues to operate schools and educational visits by arrangement. The Regimental Museum was not affected by the changes. The County Record Office also changed it's opening hours from 1st April 2017 as proposed. Market Hall Museum re-opened to the public in Feb 2017  as the HCW flagship site following significant funding from the Heritage Lottery.

We Asked

Warwickshire County Council, like local authorities up and down the country, continues to face extreme financial challenges over the next three years. Reductions in Government grants, inflation and demographic pressures mean we must identify savings amounting to around £67 million by 2020.

Given this financial challenge we want to open up a conversation with the people of Warwickshire to ask where you think money might be saved, and what services are a priority for you.

We asked you to take part in this conversation in a number of ways, via our budget tool, by dropping into one of our roadshows or by emailing us with your suggestions.

You Said

All comments and feedback received as part of the Let's Talk campaign will help shape and inform the county council's budget setting process and a report with the key findings was presented to Cabinet in December.

Key Findings

  • Overall, a total number of 1,249 people engaged with the Council through the various channels available in the ‘Let’s Talk’ public engagement programme as set out at 1.2.
  • 650 conversations at the ‘Let’s Talk’ Roadshows, 557 members of the public engaged through the online budget simulator, and 42 members of the public completed paper based versions of the budget simulator.
  • The majority of respondents expressed that they were in favour of the Council increasing Council tax by 4%.
  • Findings from all channels indicate that Warwickshire respondents elected to increase council tax to off-set the proposed savings required • Children’s Services & Education, Adult Social Care and Transport & Environment were considered to be the top priorities by respondents.
  • A significant proportion of all respondents regardless of engagement method consider that extra income should be made through increasing income opportunities and sharing costs with partner organisations when providing some services.
  • The majority of all respondents regardless of engagement method agreed that the Council’s ambition to make Warwickshire the best it can and the proposed outcomes are the right priorities for Warwickshire.
  • Positively, the Leader and Members were party to some 650 conversations with Warwickshire residents at the 9 Let’s Talk events across the County. Key areas of importance highlighted at these events included the council spending money more ‘fairly’ across Warwickshire, protecting front line services for the most vulnerable, provision of a variety children’s services including quality of education and children’s centres.

We Did

We are committed to being an open and transparent council. We will be honest and open about our progress and publish regular updates on how we are doing in delivering this plan. We will let you know how our services change and transform and will engage with you to tackle it together. Consultation activity relating to the One Organisational Plan will be publicly available on Ask Warwickshire.

Please do take the time to participate in any consultation and engagement activity as your views are vitally important to us.

We Asked

A briefing and consultation meeting with Southam Town Council was held on 29th Sept ember 2016 to which local County, District and Ward councillors plus WCC portfolio holders were invited. The briefing was delivered by WCC Property Services using draft plans and drawings, with a WFRS Training Officer on hand to answer any non-construction related questions. A public exhibition / consultation board was sighted in Southam Library, along with consultation leaflets, for 2 weeks from 3rd October 2016 and feedback /observations from the public were invited.

You Said

The feedback from both local politicians and the public was very positive, the development being seen as an enhancement for the town, both in terms of economic development and service provision. The only concerns were raised  from Stratford District planning department who were concerned about possible smoke and fumes from the fire house. 

We Did

In response WFRS took Stratford District Council representatives to view an existing unit, very similar to the one that WFRS are procuring at another Fire & Rescue Service to put their minds at rest. They are now content that the filters fitted to the Minerva Fire House that we have specified will prevent their being any environmental impact from the development.

We Asked

We consulted on proposed changes to existing Designated Speech and Language Provision (DSLP) for children with Specific Language Impairments (SLI) in six primary phase schools across the County.

Three proposals were presented:

Proposal 1: Change entry criteria for DSLP settings to cater for children with a wider range of communication & interaction difficulties (including those with autism spectrum disorder)

Proposal 2: Transfer management of the settings to schools

Proposal 3: Where possible cease separate Key Stage 1 & 2 provision – Move to an all-through-primary model.

You Said

In total 95 completed questionnaires were received. 59% (56/95) of these were from professionals working in or around the settings or schools. 33% (31/95) were from parents.

There was a high level of opposition to proposals 1 and 2 from parents using the service and some of the staff currently working in or around the DSLP bases

Generally proposal 3 was welcomed as it would minimise disruption for vulnerable learners.

We Did

Cabinet agreed to engage in consultation with the governing of bodies of the schools that were hosting the six Designated Speech and Language Provision (DSLP) settings with a view to reaching agreement on the transfer of management of the setting to the respective schools and the widening of entry criteria as soon as possible.

- Two of the six Governing Bodies approved the proposed changes and Cabinet   proceeded with the prescribed alterations to the DSLP entry criteria to include children   with a wider range of communication & interaction difficulties with effect from   September 2017, and proceed with the transfer of control of staffing and day to day   operations to the respective governing bodies for the following schools: 

  • Middlemarch Junior School – Nuneaton
  • Stockingford Primary School – Nuneaton

These changes have now been implemented and the new C&I Resourced Provisions are operational.

- Four of the six Governing Bodies decided not to proceed with the proposed changes   to the provisions and therefore Cabinet approved the phased closure of these settings   starting from September 2017, taking a maximum of 3 years. This applied to the   following DSLP settings:

  • Bilton Infant School - Rugby
  • Bishopton Primary School - Stratford
  • Clapham Terrace Primary School - Leamington Spa
  • Weddington Primary School - Nuneaton

None of the children currently attending the bases are impacted, as the phasing would ensure they were able to complete their time in the base prior to closure.

Cabinet approved measures to minimise the impact of these closures through the development of alternative communication and interaction SEN resourced provision in each District.

We Asked

Warwickshire County Council held a public consultation to ask Stratford-upon-Avon residents their opinions on how the A3400 Birmingham Road corridor could be improved.

The road is a main arterial route linking the A46 to Stratford town centre and retail destinations including Tesco and the Maybird Shopping Park. It’s also a local access route to a growing number of residential areas. The road is often congested with slow average speeds.

The need to tackle congestion on the corridor was identified as one of two key priorities from the Stratford Traffic Summits that were held last year.

The County Council had identified a number of transport proposals that could help reduce congestion on the corridor and improve conditions for pedestrians and cyclists. Proposals included improving pedestrian and cycle linkages, localised road widening, and a dedicated slip road into Tesco carpark. Longer term measures could include a new east-west link road.

The consultation started on January 22nd 2016 and finished on March 7th 2016.

You Said

The majority of responses received were generally supportive of the proposals.

The proposal with the highest level of support is the proposal for a new slip road into the Tesco site, with 79% of respondents in support.

The proposal with the least level of support is the new link road from Western Road to Hamlet Way, with the majority of respondents (56%) disagreeing with the proposal and only 35% in favour.  In contrast there was a high level of support for the new link road between Western Road and Maybrook Road, with 64% in favour of this proposal and only 21% opposed.

A full summary of Consultation Feedback is available here.

We Did

Responses will help inform the development of a scheme proposal for the Birmingham Road corridor.

We Asked

The Bermuda Connection Scheme would deliver additional capacity and improved connectivity in Nuneaton, through the creation of a new 1.3 mile highway link between West Nuneaton and Griff Roundabout by improving and opening the existing Bermuda Bridge over the A444 to all traffic.

Preliminary design proposals were produced and presented to the local community in West Nuneaton in the form of an 8 week consultation period (Friday 14 August 2015 - Friday 9 October 2015).  The proposals included additional components to the initial Scheme presented to the County Council in October 2014, which were aimed at reducing the impact of the Scheme on affected local residents whose properties or businesses are adjacent to the roads included on the new highway link route. 
 
We Asked for the views of the local community in West Nuneaton on the preliminary design proposals associated with the proposed Getting West Nuneaton Moving: Bermuda Connection Scheme in order for them to be reported back to WCC Members.

You Said

A total of 567 response forms were submitted during the consultation.  The key outcomes of the consultation were as follows:
  • 55% of the respondents agreed that traffic congestion in West Nuneaton caused problems in their day to day activities;
  • However, 57.5% of the total respondents stated that they were opposed to the Bermuda Connection Scheme;
  • There was support expressed for the Scheme in all residential areas in West Nuneaton, whilst there was a particularly strong level of objection towards the Scheme in the residential areas of Bermuda and Stockingford.

We Did

The responses to the consultation were reported to WCC Cabinet in November 2015.

For further information on the meeting and copies of reports please see the 'Results Updated' section on the consultation webpage.

We Asked

People told us they wanted a plan that would have a positive impact on their way of life, one that was realistic, could be easily understood and be measured. 

Warwickshire’s draft Joint Adult Learning Disability Statement of Intent 2015- 2020 ‘It’s My Life’ was published on 2nd February 2015 for 12 weeks formal public consultation.

We wanted to seek views and opinions and gather feedback about the learning disability plan: Do you agree with the plan? Is there anything else we need to do? What is the top priority in each area? What is important to include in the Delivery plan?

You Said

Overall, over 3000 people were contacted, responded to, or were involved in this part of the engagement process in some way. Please note this will include some double counting as some customer’s may have been consulted/engaged with on more than one occasion. Of which 469 actively contributed towards submitting written or verbal feedback.

We received overwhelming support for the draft commissioning intentions. We also made changes on the basis of the consultation and there were some areas where we were required to provide further clarification.

We Did

The statement of intent commissioning intentions were revised and updated to reflect many of the comments received.

The Learning Disability Statement of Intent (Strategy) 2015 – 2020 was approved at Cabinet on Thursday 16 July 2015.

The Delivery Plan is monitored by the Learning Disability Partnership Board which is made up of representatives from WCC adult social care & comissioning; health (CCGs); LD providers; customers and their families.

We Asked

Warwickshire County Council consulted on plans to implement new charges for a number of services to bring these in line with the council’s policy to charge for services at full cost.

Residents were encouraged to have their say on the proposed changes which would introduce charges for services previously offered at no cost, increase charges for some residential respite care, and change the way learning disability and day opportunities are charged.

You Said

93 responses were received to the consultation questionnaire, which was a response rate of 10% compared to the total number of letters issued. In addition, 19 phone calls and 2 emails were received through a dedicated email address and phone line which were set up in order to respond to individual queries about the impact of the proposals at the level of the individual.
 
A significant number of respondents were of the view that vulnerable people should not be charged for social care services in principle. This view is recognised but needs to be considered in the context that most services to vulnerable customers are already chargeable at full cost and these proposals relate to a small number of services that are not.
 
A significant number of respondents raised the view that people who cannot afford to pay should not have to pay and that any charges should be fair and consistent. This concern would be addressed by the adoption of the same means testing rules for these services as are already in place for other services. In this way those less able to pay would not be asked to pay.

A number of comments were made that any changes should be implemented and managed carefully with changes made over time to reduce the impact. 

We Did

Feedback and recommendations were considered by Warwickshire County Council Cabinet on November 13th 2014.

It was resolved that:

1) That the consultation proposals were implemented in line with the proposed timetable, but that specific conditions were adhered to in how the changes were implemented in order to minimise the impact of the changes;
 
2) For customers who already had a financial assessment, and who would not see any changes in their payments, that they were informed that this does not change their payments now and explaining any circumstances in which it might change their payments in the future so that those customers understood the change in policy and that it did not affect them at this time;
 
3) For customers who already had a financial assessment and who would see increases in their payments, that they were informed, giving them at least 4 weeks’ notice of the changes;
 
4) That customers who have not had a financial assessment have one arranged, and that the implementation of any charges for those customers did not begin until 4 weeks after they had been notified of the charge (which may be a later date than the 1st January 2015, depending upon when assessments can be done);
 
5) That charging rates are updated annually to reflect full costs, including price inflation and other changes in costs, and that the actual rates for April 2015 would be adjusted for these factors.

We Asked

We started a conversation with local people about the decisions that need to be made to shape the future of the council and seek their views on where money might be saved and what their service priorities are.

You Said

The overall key messages were:

  • Overall, a total number of 661 people engaged with the Council through the various channels available in the ‘Let’s Talk’ public engagement programme.
  • The majority of respondents expressed a wish to hold Council tax at 0%, overall they chose to reduce spending by on average 26% across all service areas.
  • Findings from all routes indicate that there is a moderate degree of tolerance by Warwickshire respondents for a council tax increase to ensure the delivery of services to off-set the proposed savings required although the level of  increase is minimal.
  • Overall, the results highlight that the public are not overly concerned about protecting absolutely one service over another when allocating resources.
  • The securing of employment and job opportunities for residents in Warwickshire received a slightly greater priority.
  • A significant proportion of all respondents regardless of engagement method consider that extra savings should be made through more efficient use of school transport services and switching off streetlights as well as the provision of adult social care services.
  • Positively, the Leader and other Cabinet Members had approximately 130 conversations with Warwickshire residents at the 8 Let’s Talk events, 4 which were in shopping venues and 4 at libraries.  Key areas of importance highlighted at these events included protecting front line services for the most vulnerable, library services and children’s centres. The majority of respondents in many of these sessions were parents with young families or older people.

We Did

Warwickshire County Council would like to thank all those who took the time to provide us with their views on the direction of travel for the authority as it looks to set a balanced budget for 2014/15 and over the medium term.

The information presented in the Cabinet report was among the information considered by the Executive of Council when they proposed a budget at their meeting on 28th January 2014. The final decision on the 2014/15 budget and Council Tax was made by Full Council at their meeting on 6th February 2014.