William Eichler 21 May 2018

Welsh programme to help the elderly ‘lacks direction’, committee warns

Welsh programme to help the elderly ‘lacks direction’, committee warns  image

A £125m programme to help vulnerable, elderly and homeless people in Wales ‘creates uncertainty and lacks direction’, assembly members say.

The Welsh government claims its Supporting People Programme helps 57,000 people per year — 37,000 of whom are elderly — live independently and securely.

However, the National Assembly Public Accounts Committee said it was unable to find out how successful the 14-year-old programme had been and what had been learned from it to make improvements.

The Welsh government has also announced the programme could be merged with a number of other schemes to create a single 'Early Intervention, Prevention and Support Grant’.

The committee, however, said they could find little evidence to support why this was necessary or why it was better than the existing funding regime.

‘It is clear that after some 14 years in existence there remained a number of significant shortcomings with the governance and management of the Supporting People Programme,’ said Nick Ramsay AM, chair of the committee.

‘The pace of progress in addressing issues raised by previous reviews, for example, with regard to the funding formula and the monitoring of the impact of the Programme, had been slow.

‘While we recognise that there may be scope to better integrate grant programmes to achieve better outcomes, we have serious reservations about the way the proposals for the new integrated grant were developed and announced in the fine detail of the Welsh Government's budget proposals.’

The Welsh Government needs to do more to demonstrate the evidence base for its proposals and to test the arrangements through robust evaluation of the flexible funding pilot projects that are now underway before deciding on the scope of any new grant and the timetable for its implementation,’ Mr Ramsay said.

A Welsh Government spokesperson said: 'We are committed to ensuring that vulnerable people are supported to access good quality housing and help them maintain their tenancies. The Supporting People programme plays an important part in helping us achieve that aim.

'We are also investing an additional £20m to tackle homelessness in 2018-19 and 2019-20, combined, and an extra £10m for youth homelessness.'

Declaring a climate change emergency image

Declaring a climate change emergency

Local authorities can play a key role in tackling climate change – and there is plenty for them to do. Never before has thinking globally and acting locally been more important, says Mark Whitehead.
Open letter to Boris Johnson image

Open letter to Boris Johnson

The MJ's editor Heather Jameson asks the new PM a simple question: do you want to fund local government or do you want to scale back services to the basics?
Highways jobs

Senior Traffic Engineer

East Riding of Yorkshire Council
£32,029 - £34,788 per annum
Currently seeking an enthusiastic and experienced individual to manage our Traffic Team. East Riding of Yorkshire
Recuriter: East Riding of Yorkshire Council

Chief Executive

Norwich City Council
Competitive Salary
Could you lead an organisation with a £120m turnover? Norwich, Norfolk
Recuriter: Norwich City Council

Lifeguard

Chelmsford City Council
Grade 3 - Starting at £17,931 per anum and rising to £19,131
Riverside Leisure centre has now opened and its new exciting 25 metre 10 lane pool with Learner Pool, Splash Zone and Flume needs you to help us ma... Chelmsford, Essex
Recuriter: Chelmsford City Council

Technician

Derbyshire County Council
£22,628 - £24,455 per annum
Two posts have become available in the Council's Highways Development Control Section Derbyshire
Recuriter: Derbyshire County Council

Business Systems Support Officer

South Holland District Council
£21,166 - £24,799
Starting salary
Recuriter: South Holland District Council

Local Government News

Latest issue - Local Goverrnemnt News

This issue of Local Government News explores how councils can tackle modern slavery and trafficking in their supply chains, finds out more about Cambridge's first cohousing scheme and the launch of a new project to build a shared service pattern library for local government.

This issue also contains a special focus on children's services and how councils are protecting children following local safeguarding children boards being abolished.

Register for your free magazine