Better engagement mechanisms needed for Localism agenda to succeed

On 9 June 2011 the Communities and Local Government Select Committee launched the report of its inquiry into the Government’s plans for localism and decentralisation of public services. The Report concludes that ‘Government’s desire to deliver localism is neither supported consistently across Whitehall nor implemented coherently by each department of state’ and that Ministers have ‘so far produced no compelling vision of what their imagined localist future will look like.’  The report makes a number of recommendations including for the forthcoming White Paper on public service reform.

The report recognises the value of voluntary and community sector organisations in supporting communities as well as identifying the need to change commissioning and procurement  processes to ensure these groups can compete. Voice4Change England (V4CE) submitted written evidence to the inquiry in partnership with Urban Forum.

We are very pleased to see that CLG has cited our submission in various parts of the report. In summary, the main points extracted from our submission address:

  • Balancing the welcome shift of power to service users to shape services with the need for central government to provide minimum standards in core areas, and ensure regulatory compliance, including equality and human rights requirements in law [120].
  • The need for stronger engagement mechanisms which ensure decision-making is more representative [243].
  • The need for public service reforms are managed properly to ensure the opportunities are kept open to local businesses or charities rather then large corporations [374].

Read the complete report

View our submission to the inquiry