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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Room

Contact: Emma Aye-Kumi (020 8314 9534) 

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes of the meeting held on 11 December 2017 pdf icon PDF 275 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 11 December 2017 be agreed as a true and accurate record of the proceedings.

 

2.

Declarations of interest pdf icon PDF 201 KB

Minutes:

2.1         Councillor Sorba declared an interest in respect of item 3a. He sits on the council of governors for SLAM NHS Trust.

 

2.2         Councillor Slater declared an interest as Lewisham Council’s Mental Health Champion.

 

2.3         Councillor Moore declared an interest in respect of item 5. She is a governor of Lewisham Southwark College.

 

3.

Responses to Referrals to Mayor and Cabinet

No responses are due.

Minutes:

No responses were due.

 

4.

CAMHS Funding pdf icon PDF 479 KB

Minutes:

The Chair welcomed Tony O’Sullivan and colleagues, retired paediatrician in Lewisham, representing the Save Lewisham Hospital Campaign.

 

4.2      The Committee heard that:

·         The service was experiencing worsening acute need and a growing population

·         Although there had been a big push to reduce the wait list, currently the wait for first treatment was too long

·         There were currently 170 on the list, and the service receives around 30 referrals per week

·         Core CAMHS front line FTE in 2010 stood at 51. This had dropped to 49. The effect of the proposed council and NHS cuts could see this drop as low as 46

·         Wait lists and outcomes were not improving and cuts would not lead to better service.

 

A discussion followed in which the following points were made:

  • At the time of deciding the reduction in funding, it was agreed that the effect of the saving would be monitored
  • Overall, the SAMHS budget was higher now than when the proposal was put forward by about 4%
  • The temporary fund to deal with the wait list would continue until June and work was ongoing to reduce the waitlist
  • The number of referrals increased in the last quarter. It was not clear what the reason for this was, or whether this increase would be sustained in the next and subsequent quarters
  • There were two wait lists in operation – the first dealt with assessments, the second was the wait for treatment following assessment. The length of wait for treatment varied depending on the complexity of need, and could be as long as 5-6 months
  • The complexity of issues had increased. Nationally, A&E departments were experiencing a 200% increase in children presenting in mental health crisis
  • The increase in demand and complexity placed frontline staff under increased pressure
  • Some members felt that funding should be preserved. Others felt that ‘unpicking’ needed to be done to distinguish between the impact of the cut against the complexity of CCG funding and other factors.
  • The committee acknowledged that reversing and suspending the decision to reduce CAMHS funding would result in cost pressures elsewhere.

 

RESOLVED: that a referral be made to Mayor and Cabinet in the following terms:

 

 “The CYP Select Committee requests that the Mayor and Cabinet reconsider the proposed reductions to the council’s contribution to CAMHS funding, against a background of concerns being raised that the service is unable to keep up with increasing pressures. We do so acknowledging that increasing council spending in one area of service may lead to decreases in other areas.

 

The Committee feels that this is a matter of importance and requests a report back in 6 months’ time.”

 

5.

A presentation by Ubuntu Social Living Networks

Guest speakers – Mr Daniel Pink and Dr Ian Phillips.

 

Ubuntu Social Living Networks is a social enterprise and youth leadership programme working with children and young people of the African Caribbean diaspora to build self-esteem by spreading knowledge of true African history.

Minutes:

5.1         The Chair welcomed Dr Ian Phillips and Daniel Pink of Ubuntu Social Living Networks. They gave a presentation regarding the work of the social enterprise.

 

In response to questions, the following was noted:

  • Schools refer through word of mouth
  • Ubuntu was looking into accreditation so that young people undertaking the programme could earn a qualification
  • The council does not fund mentoring therefore it would be for individual schools to decide whether to adopt and finance the programme
  • It was not the Committee’s place to mediate between schools and service providers.

 

The Chair thanked Dr Phillips and Mr Pink for their input.

 

RESOLVED: that the presentation be noted.

 

6.

Update on Lewisham Southwark College

Councillor Hilary Moore will give a verbal update.

Minutes:

Councillor Moore gave an update on progress made by Lewisham Southwark College.

 

The Committee noted that:

·         Membership of the Board had largely changed since Cllr Moore was appointed as a governor in 2014

·         The college was improving from a low base, having received two unsatisfactory Ofsted gradings

·         The ethos of the college had changed and staff and students were talking more positively about the college

·         The latest Ofsted inspection had and rated the college Requires Improvement

·         The college had merged with Newcastle college but retained its own Board and identity

·         Governors had provided support as well as challenge and achievement in 2017 overall stood at 88.6%, which put the college in the top 10% of Further Education colleges in England

·         English and maths had seen significant improvements

·         Functional skills had also improved with a 90.8% adult success rate

·         There was still a way to go by the direction of travel was positive. The college would be inspected by Ofsted again within 18 months.

 

RESOLVED that the update be noted.

 

7.

Safeguarding Services 6-monthly report pdf icon PDF 700 KB

Minutes:

Stephen Kitchman, Director for Children’s Social Care, summarised the report.

 

The following was noted in discussion:

·         The ethnicity of children subject to Section 47 enquiries was disproportionate to the local population and officers were looking at the reasons for this. Work was being done on prevention, where relevant working with the voluntary and faith sectors to look at discipline

·         Emotional abuse correlates to Domestic Violence where children and young people are not necessarily harmed but witness it. Emotional abuse is related to poor parental mental health

·         September-November 2017 saw an increase on referrals to Children’s Social Care, and the conversion rate of referrals to assessments and acceptance of cases is increasing.

 

It was RESOLVED that the report be noted.

 

8.

Child Sexual Exploitation Update pdf icon PDF 432 KB

Minutes:

Stephen Kitchman, Director for Children’s Social Care, presented the report.

 

The following was noted in reponse to questions:

 

·         Social media was a significant factor in peer on peer abuse cases

·         Mobile phone policies vary between schools

·         A number of awareness raising activities were planned for CSE week such as social media activities, police going into schools and other public places

·         The challenge was keeping up to speed with social media

·         Youth First offered PHSE work on healthy relationships, targeting those who are coercive and coerced

·         The Chair and Vice Chair had recently visited the Missing Exploited and Trafficked team. They had found that schools had a big role to play but funding reductions had squeezed pastoral services, and that coerced and coercive behaviours were starting earlier and PHSE work on healthy relationships should be addressed in Year 6.

 

It was RESOLVED that the report be noted.

 

The time being 9:20pm, it was MOVED, SECONDED and RESOLVED that standing orders relating to the length of the meeting be suspended to allow for the completion of business.

 

9.

Children's Social Care Roadmap pdf icon PDF 514 KB

Minutes:

Stephen Kitchman, Director for Children’s Social Care introduced the report.

 

The Committee noted the following:

  • The cost of residential care had increased due to the national problem of demand exceeding supply. Providers were also mindful of Ofsted ratings
  • There would always be a need for agency foster carers to cover specific complex needs. Independent fostering agencies were all more expensive than in-house foster carers.
  • There was at least a 6 month lead time to becoming a foster carer
  • A £5.7m overspend was expected. Members were concerned about how the service would meet its statutory obligations in the future without compromising on quality, while the overspend existed and further cuts were yet to be made.

 

It was RESOLVED that the report be noted.

 

10.

Select Committee work programme pdf icon PDF 186 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Without discussion, it was RESOLVED that the report be noted.

11.

Referrals to Mayor and Cabinet pdf icon PDF 208 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered a draft of a referral to Mayor and Cabinet regarding SEND provision, following the discussion at the last meeting on 11 December.

It was RESOLVED that two referrals would be made to Mayor and Cabinet in the following terms:

 

SEND provision

 

The CYP Select Committee would like to make the following comments to the Mayor and Cabinet in relation to funding travel assistance and short breaks.

 

1. We have heard a number of concerns from parents about the effects on their daily lives resulting from changes to travel assistance and short breaks funding for children with SEND.

2. We appreciate that the current financial climate necessitates making difficult funding decisions in order to achieve savings and reduce overspends.

3. Proposed changes to after school club and holiday provision could affect parents’ ability to work. Making savings in this area can have an undesirable knock-on effect for the wider economy of Lewisham, particularly where parents are no longer able to work, and become reliant on public funds.

4. We note a reduction in numbers of those being provided with free transport, but no compelling evidence that need has reduced.

5. We also note that there are proposals to tighten the criteria for eligibility for some short breaks, and that some short breaks may be reduced from full day to half days.

6. We would welcome a review of SEND funding levels, in particular of travel assistance and short breaks provision.

 

3.3 The Mayor attended the CYP Select Committee meeting on 11 December (under a separate item) to provide the Committee with his view of where the challenges for the new Mayor would lie. The Mayor’s view was that Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) was the area that had changed the most over the last 30 years. He acknowledged that the demand for places was increasing and that the complexity of need was far greater, and that this trend was likely to continue.

 

CAMHS funding

 

 

The CYP Select Committee requests that the Mayor and Cabinet reconsider the proposed reductions to the council’s contribution to CAMHS funding, against a background of concerns being raised that the service is unable to keep up with increasing pressures. We do so acknowledging that increasing council spending in one area of service may lead to decreases in other areas.

The Committee feels that this is a matter of importance and requests a report back in 6 months’ time.