Agenda and minutes

Equality and Diversity Forum
Wednesday, 10th December, 2008 7.00 pm

Venue: Civic Offices, St Nicholas Way, Sutton, SM1 1EA

Items
No. Item

75.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND DECLARATION OF SUBSTITUTES

Estimated time – 2 minutes

 

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillor Abigail Lock, Janet Sherborne, Andy Wilson and Nasser Butt.

 

Richard Barns was substituted by Sharon Jordan-Passmore.

 

Derek Forbes, Sutton Association for the Blind was also in attendance.

 

76.

MINUTES

of the meeting held on 15 October 2008.

 

Estimated time: 5 minutes

 

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting held on the 15 October 2008 were approved as a correct record, and signed by the Chair.

 

77.

FEEDBACK ON BLACK AND MINORITY ETHNIC HOUSING AND EMPLOYMENT CONSULTATION EVENT

Verbal report by Andrea Horwood on the event which took place on 17 November 2008.

 

Estimated time : 10 minutes           

 

Minutes:

Andrea Horwood of Sutton Housing Centre advised the Forum of the Black and Minority Ethnic Housing and Employment consultation event which took place on Monday 17 November 2008 at the Salvation Army Centre, Sutton, which was attended by 70 Sutton residents. 

 

The event consisted of a number of presentations, followed by breakout sessions which included:

 

  • Understanding access to services
  • Providing access to BME users.
  • Clients with social neds.
  • How the Housing Centre worked.

 

It had been agreed to hold similar events in the future and an action plan would be drawn up, which would be extended to include BME people with disabilities.

 

Councillor Ruth Dombey stated that she had attended the Annual General Meeting Refugee Network and was pleased to note that English lessons for women and children had been arranged.

 

78.

ANY OTHER URGENT BUSINESS

brought forward at the direction of the Chair, who has approved the reason for urgency.

 

Estimated time: 2 minutes

 

Minutes:

There was no urgent business.

 

79.

ISSUES ARISING FROM THE BULLETIN

Information Bulletin

 

Oral presentation by the Project Manager.

 

Estimated time: 5 minutes

 

Sutton Carers

 

Summary by the Chief Executive of Sutton Carers Centre and CEN and Transitional LINk Representative for Carers of the work done by the Sutton Carers.

 

Estimated time: 20 minutes

 

Minutes:

Information Bulletin

 

Linda thanked everyone who had sent items for the last edition of the Bulletin and highlighted that it was hoped to be able to make this as interesting as possible.  Linda stated that the Bulletin could be used to spread good news, or letting people know what their groups were involved in or to advertise future events.

 

Linda asked if items or information for the next Bulletin, despatch date 23 January 2009, could be forwarded to her in the first instance by e-mail at linda.fisher@sutton.gov.uk or by post to the 2nd floor, Civic Offices, Sutton SM1 1EA.

 

Sutton Carers

 

Rachael MacLeod, Chief Executive of Sutton Carers’ Centre (SCC) circulated information and gave a presentation on the workings of the Sutton Carers centre and explained that speakers were invited to their bi-monthly meetings.  The centre is situated at Benhill House, 12-14 Benhill Avenue, Sutton which is the headquarters of SCC, the buildings also serves as a drop-in centre as well as providing meeting rooms for carers and their family, as well as for other organisations.

 

The formal mechanicisms for carers in the Borough is through the Carers Forum, comprising carers, those being cared and their family and friends.  Carers’ issues formally feed into the work of the Sutton Partnership through the Carers Partnership Board.

 

Rachael informed the Forum of some of the facts related to carers:-

 

  • In June 2008, a 10 year National Carers Strategy was launched to support carers and the cared.

 

  • Carers are significantly at risk of health inequality.

 

  • Carers are more at risk of slipping into povery.

 

  • It is believed that there are over 16,000 carers in Sutton, but only 3,000 are known to the Carers Centre.

 

  • The Carers Centre helps people who identify themselves as carers/cared by:-

 

  • Helping their health and wellbeing.

 

  • Providing support during the process of personalisation of care.

 

  • Providing support through an outreach worker.

 

  • Combating cultural stereotyping.

 

  • Taking a holistic/whole family approach to support.

 

  • Encouraging neighbourliness in the Borough, we are all going to be cared for at some time in our lives.

 

  • Working in schools to spread information and to support young carers, and

 

  • Maximising the self-care potential.

 

The next meeting of the Sutton Carers Centre’s Open Forum will be on the 19 December 2008.

 

80.

BUDGET CONSULTATION

Questions and answers session and presentation.

 

Estimated time: 10 minutes presentation, 10 minutes of questions and answers.

Minutes:

Mr Phil Butlin, Executive Head of Group Finance explained the process for this year’s budget consultation and explained some of the proposals for extra spending, i.e. waste disposal and areas for budget reductions.  Mr Butlin stated the proposals consulted on would result in an increase in council tax of 3.4%.

 

The consultation period ends on the 27 January 2009.  The Executive would take representations at their meeting on 13 January 2009.  The Executive would then consider the council tax and budget in February 2009 which would then go on to full Council on 1 March 2009 for approval.

 

Rachael MacLeod raised the issue of the principal savings proposals for 2009/10 especially with regard to “continue to manage contracts with external care providers to achieve efficiencies” and the Sutton Carers Centre.

 

Councillor Ruth Dombey advised that she should write to Adi Cooper, Director of Adult Social Services and Housing in the first instance to obtain further information, following which Rachael could submit a full letter to be considered as part of the consultation process.

 

Ms Fisaya Fadahunsi queried the support for youth clubs/organisations.  Mr Butlin advised that he would contact Ms Fadahunsi as to how funding could be obtained.

 

Resolved: (i) To thank Phil Butlin for presenting the report and responding to questions.

 

(ii) Completed feedback forms should be returned to Sutton Council by the 27 January 2009.

 

81.

EQUALITIES MONITORING AND EQUALITY STANDARD - LEVEL 4 pdf icon PDF 71 KB

a)     Report of the Policy Officer (Equalities) on the monitoring of the Equality Scheme to be tabled at the meeting.

 

b)     Report of the Executive Head of Policy & Communications on Improvement Agency’s Diversity Peer Challenge.     

 

Estimated time – 10 minutes

 

Minutes:

Mr Dennis Bartholomew advised that Level 3 of the Equality Scheme had been achieved and encouraged the Forum to continue to be effective in ensuring that Level 4 is achieved.  Dennis advised that when the Improvement and Development Agency for Local Government (IDeA) external assessment had been signed off, it would be circulated with the 23 January 2009 Information Bulletin.

 

Resolved: To circulate to members of the Forum the IDeA external assessment of Level 3 of the Equality Standard for Local Government when signed off.

82.

PRESENTATION ON THE 2009 COUNCILLOR SHADOWING

Verbal presentation by Sutton Minority Ethnic Forum.

 

Estimated time : 10 minutes              

 

Minutes:

Unfortunately as there was no representation from the Sutton Minority Ethnic Forum, the presentation on the 2009 Councillor Shadowing did not take place.

 

However, Ms Beau Fadahunsi gave a short presentation and showed a video on the 2008 Councillor Shadowing event.  10 young people (3 boys and 7 girls) had taken part, with one group meeting Mr Paul Burstow, MP and the other group meeting Mr Tom Brake, MP. They also visited various Councillors’ surgeries and meetings, Question Time with Councillor Ruth Dombey, Councillor Paul Scully and the Chief Executive, Citizenship Ceremony and Excellence Awards ceremony, together with a visit to Parliament. A young member of the Travellers community had also taken part.

 

Beau advised that she had met with 10 enthusiastic youngsters who were interested in formulating a group either to be called ‘Second Generation’ or ‘Next Generation’.  The group would like to participate by attending the Forum meetings so that their views could be heard. Ruth, on behalf of the Forum, said she would welcome their attendance and suggested that possibly 2-3 members could attend.

 

Peter Rollins said about a repeat programme, with an average group of 16 people, in the summer 2009, possibly to be repeated six months; later.  It would be a joint event, particularly for the youth and would be linked with the Youth Parliament.  A visit would be arranged to Oxford University to talk to the newly elected black president.

 

Resolved: That contact be made with Suttton Minority Ethnic Forum to establish arrangements made for the 2009 Councillor Shadowing event.

 

83.

THE LAUNCH OF THE SUTTON LESBIAN, GAY, BI-SEXUAL AND TRANSGENDERED FORUM AND PREPARATIONS FOR LGBT HISTORY MONTH - FEBRUARY 2009

Verbal presentation by Richard Barns/Sharon Jordan Passmore/Sergeant M Nicholson on the launch and preparations for the Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual and Transgendered Forum History Month.

 

Estimated time : 10 minutes

 

Minutes:

Sergeant Martin Nicholson and Sharon Jordan-Passmore gave a presentation on the launch of the Sutton Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual and Transgendered (LGBT) Forum which took place on the 27 November 2008 at the Robin Hood Pub, West Street, Sutton.

 

Sergeant Nicholson stated that the next meeting of the newly established Forum would take place at the Robin Hood Pub on the 14 January 2009.  Sharon said that more people were needed to make the Forum work effectively.

 

It was highlighted that more work needed to be carried out with Sutton schools as LGBT issues are not promoted at the present time, although a great deal of work is being done in schools elsewhere.  It was suggested by the Forum that INSET training could include information on homophobic bullying.

 

It was suggested that an invitation should be sent to the LGBT Forum to send a representative to the Equality Action Group meetings as they have an interest in supporting the anti-homophobic bullying agenda.

 

Resolved (i) That Sergeant Nicholson and Sharon Jordan-Passmore be thanked for their presentation.

 

(ii) That Peter Rollins would liaise with Sutton LGBT Forum and LMO about how they could participate in MEEA’s Diversity Day in March 2009.

 

(iii) That Children, Young People and Learning Services be requested to provide a briefing to the Forum on the work done in schools to support LGBT students.

 

(iv) That the Equalities Action Group be requested to invite the Sutton Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual and Transgendered Forum to join.

 

84.

DATE OF NEXT MEETING

The date of the next meeting will be on Thursday 12 February 2009 in room 5, Civic Offices commencing at 7.00 pm.

 

Minutes:

The date of the next meeting is scheduled for Thursday 12 February 2009 at 7.00 pm in Room 5, Civic Offices.