Norfolk Coalition Against the Cuts
Norfolk Coalition Against the Cuts
Norfolk County Council must say no to further cuts to Public Services Must say no to privatisation of Public Services Must end Zero Hours contracts
Privatised public services have to be taken back into public ownership
From prisons to rail franchises and even London's Boris bikes, Serco is a giant global corporation that has hoovered up outsourced government contracts. Now the NHS is firmly in its sights. But it stands accused of mismanagement, lying and even charging for non-existent work. (read on Guardian 29th July 2013)
Norfolk County Council staff may be engaged on a casual “as and when required” basis where there is no guarantee that they will be offered work, nor is there an obligation to accept work should it be offered and as such are not employed on a contract of employment.
In addition to the casual arrangement, Norfolk County Council also uses zero hours contracts where individuals are offered a contract of employment, and accrue continuous service and contractual and statutory benefits, but have no guaranteed hours. Where hours are offered, then employees on these contracts are required to accept them. These contracts are offered where levels of work are still unpredictable, but occur more frequently than on a casual basis. Staff in the Adult Education Service are employed on a sessional basis, where there is no guarantee that work will be offered nor does the work have to be accepted, but where work is offered this is for the duration of the course, normally 10 weeks.
Currently, a total of 2,112 individuals (non-schools) and 7,800 (schools) have at least one assignment with Norfolk County Council which does not guarantee hours of work. Of those, 811 (4,696 in schools) also have a contract of employment elsewhere in the organisation which has guaranteed contracted weekly hours.
The cancer of casualisation has infected Norfolk County Council with 1000s also on zero hours contracts with no guarrantee of work.
Norfolk's Labour led Council must abolish these iniquitous and dehumanising 'Zero Hours Contracts'.
The following is the reply from Norfolk County Council to the request for information under the Freedom of Information Act.
Can you please advise under Freedom of Information Act, how many employees of Norfolk County Council are employed on Zero Hours contracts.
the following is Norfolk County Council's Response.................
The case against the vile exploitative contracts which are 'Zero Hours Contracts'.
People are poor for many reasons. But explanations which put poverty down to drug and alcohol dependency, family breakdown, poor parenting, or a culture of worklessness are not supported by the facts.
Child poverty blights childhoods. Growing up in poverty means being cold, going hungry, not being able to join in activities with friends. For example, 61 per cent of families in the bottom income quintile would like, but cannot afford, to take their children on holiday for one week a year.
Poverty is also related to more complicated health histories over the course of a lifetime, again influencing earnings as well as the overall quality – and indeed length - of life. Professionals live, on average, eight years longer than unskilled workers.
Child poverty imposes costs on broader society – estimated to be at least £29 billion a year.8 Governments forgo prospective revenues as well as commit themselves to providing services in the future if they fail to address child poverty in the here and now.
Child poverty reduced dramatically between 1998/9-2011/12 when 1.1 million children were lifted out of poverty (BHC). This reduction is credited in large part to measures that increased the levels of lone parents working, as well as real and often significant increases in the level of benefits paid to families with children.
Under current government policies, child poverty is projected to rise from 2012/13 with an expected 600,000 more children living in poverty by 2015/16.10 This upward trend is expected to continue with 4.7 million children projected to be living in poverty by 2020.
In February 2013, Ofsted said the council’s child protection arrangements were “inadequate” across the board, and on 17th August it passed the same damning verdict on its services for children in Norfolk's care.
In a damning report to be published next week, the National Children's Bureau finds that, in many respects, child poverty is now a bigger problem than during the 1960s, when it carried out a seminal study, Born to Fail?.
"There is a real risk that our society is sleepwalking into a world where children grow up in a state of social apartheid, with poor children destined to experience hardship and disadvantage just by accident of birth, and their more affluent peers unaware of their existence." Observer 24th August 2013
The County Council will endeavour to make £184 million in cuts to services over the next three years, in addition to this there will be mammoth additional costs foisted on them by the Incinerator planned to be built soon. If the incinerator is rejected then maybe another £90 million will have to be paid in compensation to the contractors as the deal has already been signed off by the previous Tory administration.
No More Cuts
Rt Hon Andy Burnham MP
Secretary of State for Health
20th November 2009
This Government has made major strides in improving the healthcare of our nation through record investment and a relentless focus on increasing standards of care. Recent moves which will formalise targets as entitlements are to be welcomed and will ensure that Britain never again takes on the mantle of the sick man of Europe. Your work on an NHS Constitution will similarly entrench the notion that citizens deserve to know what they can expect from their National Health Service and will form a bulwark against future forces which may work to downgrade levels of care.
One of the reasons why we believe that the NHS has improved to the extent it has is partly down to the Government’s non-dogmatic approach to the use of external expertise in the provision of its services. The presumption that the private and voluntary sectors should be considered on equal terms with state provided services has increased the capacity of the NHS to provide high quality services. Indeed, the commitment to using third sector providers was made in the 2005 Labour Manifesto: ‘In a range of services the voluntary and community sector has shown itself to be innovative, efficient and effective. Its potential for service delivery should be considered on equal terms.’
We are worried, therefore, about your announcement that henceforth the NHS is the “preferred provider” of NHS services. We understand the need to ensure that frontline staff are not taken for granted and feel valued for the tremendous work that they do, but there are more effective ways of reflecting this through pay, training and career progression opportunities. By restricting the use of the private and voluntary sectors solely to the provision of new services will limit your ability to use their huge innovatory potential in a constrained fiscal environment. Both sectors are ideally placed to help find more cost-effective and user-orientated solutions to provision as budget holders increasingly strive for efficiency savings.
As well as a missed opportunity, we are particularly concerned that this move will have a detrimental impact on the future stability of the voluntary sector. As you will know, the third sector is unique in having doubled its turnover and swelled its overall workforce by more than a third over the last 12 years. Much of this growth has been due to the sector bidding for and winning public sector contracts. Indeed £4.7bn worth of NHS services are delivered by the third sector. Many third sector organisations have factored continued public sector provision in their business plans for the future, but are now confused as to whether these opportunities will continue to exist under a future Labour Government.
One of New Labour’s strengths has been to recognise that excellence and talent is not confined to one sector or one institution, and that it is the duty of politicians to continually ask whether service provision could be improved in the interests of the user. NHS staff often hold the key to unlocking improvements at the frontline, but so do the thousands of workers in the voluntary sector who equally believe in the ethos of public service.
We would like to ask you to rethink your approach to the NHS as the preferred provider of services as we build up to the next election. Now is not the time to alienate important sectors that hold much good will and are potentially the key to the citizen-centred, high quality health services of the future.
Jessica Asato, Acting Director, Progress
Peter Kyle, Deputy Chief Executive, ACEVO
Simon Blake, Chief Executive, Brook
Jeremy Swain, Chief Executive, Thames Reach
Professor Julian Le Grand, London School of Economics
Professor Paul Corrigan
Stephen Burke, Chief Executive, Counsel and Care
Allison Ogden-Newton, Chief Executive of Social Enterprise London
- See more at: http://www.progressonline.org.uk/2009/11/23/letter-to-andy-burnham/#sthash.HrHfFUeD.dpuf
This letter from Jessica Asato to Andy Burnham the then Secretary of State for Health was written only 4 years ago. In this letter Asato makes from a right wing point of view a solid intellectual case for the privatisation of NHS.
Jessica Asato is the Parliamentary candiate for Norwich North Constituency
J. Asato is a former leading member of Progress a very influential think tank within the national Labour Party. This letter explains Asato's position in regard to privatisation of the NHS.
Is Jessica Asato in favour of privatising the NHS? She most definitely was four years ago. In this letter she makes the argument in some very considerable detail for the privatisation of the NHS
The question which must be answered by her, has she changed her mind if so she must be honest and say why, Otherwise she must confirm she is still in favour of privatisation NHS, we the people would then know on what political gound she stands.
The question that must be answered, by Jessica Asato, Labour PPC for Norwich North.
Is she in favour of privatising our NHS
Letter from Jessica Asato to Andy Burnham advisng him of the benefits of privatisation of the NHS
Today people across the UK will struggle to feed themselves and their families. Unemployment, Poverty pay, Zero hours Contracts, Redundancy, illness, benefit delay, domestic violence, debt, family breakdown and paying for the additional costs of heating during winter are just some of the reasons why people go hungry.
Who will feed me?
Complacent politicians of all hues have outrageously allowed Britain to become
Foodbanks are now an established
way of life. 200000 by the end of the year,
Another tough decision made by our very tough Labour led County Council. Herondale the only full time respite care home for the disabled and vulnerable people in Norwich, Gt Yarmouth and area is to be closed early December 2013. Then demolished!
Herondale has offered respite care which has met the needs for carers and those they care for for many many years.
It is outrageous Herondale a very specialised respite care home is now to be closed, it will leave vulnerable disabled older and younger people imprisoned in their own homes. Specialised respite care centres are closing with day-centres already closed, adding to carer stress, loneliness and isolation for many which in turn can lead to associated mental health problems. The effects can already be seen with the additional pressures on NHS services.
Herondale is a Respite Centre - A dedicated specialist respite centre, one of only three in Norfolk.
With this unique specialism, the centre accepts advance bookings as well as taking emergency admissions.
Situated in the heart of the Norfolk Broads and just 12 miles from Norwich, a warm welcome awaits you at the Acle Respite Centre (Herondale). Part of Age UK Norfolk's Community Support Centre providing day support for people who are elderly frail and their carers.
The Centre combines 29 respite care beds and day service facilities, meeting the needs of people across Norfolk.
An extensive range of facilities includes spacious lounges, a computer room with internet facilities, dining room and pleasant gardens. Whether you are a respite guest or visitor for the day, you can be sure that friendly, trained staff will be on hand to make your time at Herondale comfortable and enjoyable.
People can choose to participate in a range of social and therapeutic activities or if you prefer, take some time out and relax in lounge areas and pleasant gardens. Come along and see for yourself what Herondale has to offer for you. Staff look forward to meeting you.
• Café (serving tea, coffee and a variety of snacks)
• Restaurant (serving 3 meals a day with a choice of menu)
• Foot care specialist
• Computer with internet
• Quiet room
• Landscaped gardens
• Freeview television
• DVD player
Check out all the good things the Care Quality Commission has to say about Herondale as recent as October this year. Quite different from what Norfolk County Councillors have to say.
• Bingo, cards and board games
• Arts and crafts
• Tea dances
• Computer courses
Norfolk County Council do not plan to to replace Herondale in any way. This is purely very short-term cost saving at the long term expense of Norfolk citizens. Closure will without doubt excerbate hospital admissions - push older into long-term residential care unnecessarily. Once this respite care home is gone it will not be replaced.
Where is the joined up thinking between Health Care and Social Care?
Outrageous proposal to close Herondale by Norfolk's Labour County Councillors.
Do you have a story to tell? Are the cuts effecting you? If you wish to share your experience of how the cuts have effected you, are effecting you, your family or someone you care for. Then pse write to NCAC in complete confidentiality, anonymity is guaranteed.
The preventative services must and will be our number one priority in Social Care.
Norfolk Labour will increase, not cut, investment in the services that help our older and more vulnerable residents to continue living in their own homes. The overwhelming majority of people wish to stay in their own homes and be independent with a good quality of life. More extensive use of assistive technology can make this wish a reality. Norfolk Labour will work
with the NHS, voluntary organisations and housing providers to ensure that everyone who wishes to continue living in their own home can do so. We will always examine every proposal that will help us to deliver the best service in the most cost effective way. Under this government Social Services are being starved of funds and we need to make every penny go further but, unlike the Tories in Norfolk, we will not force changes through against the wishes of those of our fellow citizens who depend on the service and the advice of care professionals. It simply isn’t fair to make Norfolk’s most frail and
vulnerable bear the brunt of the cost of Tory
Economic failure. The Tories have cut social services in Norfolk to the bone. We will not compromise when it comes to looking after our fellow citizens who depend on the Council to ensure their care.
Norfolk County Council has a responsibility to the electorate not to pass a cuts budget.
'The government's Bedroom Tax is taking funds from thousands of low-income, disabled people, while the rich get tax breaks and international corporations
dodge billions of pounds of tax which could pay off the UK deficit. In Norfolk, where caring services are also being devasted, hundreds of disabled people are
affected by the bedroom Tax - losing vital money they need for food, heating and other essentials. Here are some of the people affected - telling their own story.'
Abolish the Bedroom Tax
Video by Alex Francis
When will our Labour PPCs' Clive Lewis and Jessica Assato have the the bottle to say to their Labour Councillors stop the cuts? You are Labour - stop hurting the most vulnerable.