Weekly media roundup – 30/11/13 – 6/12/13
This week has seen 314 LGA mentions in national, regional, trade, broadcast and online publications including 14 mentions in national newspapers, broadcast and online articles.
Autumn Statement roundup
Friday 6 December
The Independent, Mail, BBC Online, Mirror and Guardian all ran the LGA's responses to the Autumn Statement, which included an announcement that there will be no further cuts to local council budgets. LGA Chairman Sir Merrick Cockell said:
"Local government has already played a huge part in reducing the deficit and the Chancellor has today acknowledged that any further cuts would push some councils to breaking point. There are signs that local government is being listened to."
Other reports focused on the partial lifting of the housing borrowing cap.
Letter: Social care cuts
Thursday 5 December
In a joint letter to The Times about social care cuts, LGA Chairman Sir Merrick Cockell, along with the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services and Hawkes Care and Support Alliance, called on the Chancellor to use the Autumn Statement to "prevent the cracks already evident in our parched adult social care system from becoming wider".
Councils 'must be free to build'
Wednesday 4 December
The LGA's press release on the housing borrowing cap ran in The Independent, on BBC Online and Mirror online. The LGA urged the Government to allow councils in England and Wales to borrow more money to spend on building so they can tackle housing shortages. The LGA's Environment Board Chairman Cllr Mike Jones said:
"The Chancellor has an unrivalled opportunity to use this Autumn Statement to create jobs, provide tens of thousands of homes and help the economy without having to find a single extra penny. New homes are badly needed and councils want to get on with building them. The common sense answer is for the Treasury to remove its house building block and let us get on with it."
Young people to be allowed to remain in foster care until age 21
Wednesday 4 December
The Guardian reported Cllr David Simmonds, Chairman of the LGA's Children and Young People Board's, response to the Government's announcement that children and young people brought up by foster carers in England will be allowed to remain with families until they are 21 if they choose to under a new legal duty for councils. The Government has set aside £40 million for local authorities over the next three years to put support arrangements in place. Cllr Simmonds said:
"Councils are working to ensure everything possible is done so that children in care have access to the same opportunities and life chances as their peers."
Refuges ‘turn away more than 150 women a day because of budget cuts'
Tuesday 3 December
Cllr Ann Lucas, LGA spokeswoman on domestic violence, responded to a report from Women's Aid which ran in The Independent. The report suggested more than 150 women a day are being turned away from domestic violence refuges as successive budget cuts push the system into ‘a state of crisis.' Cllr Lucas said:
"Council budgets will have reduced by 43 per cent by 2015/16 and with £20 billion worth of savings having to be found. Despite this, two-thirds of councils have maintained funding services for victims of domestic abuse this year."
Withdrawal of council tax support leads to 30 per cent increase in court proceedings
Monday 2 December
The LGA responded to a report from anti-cuts campaigners False Economy into the effect on local authorities that passed on government cuts to council tax benefits on Guardian Online. The LGA said its members "have been pushed into an impossible position by the Government's cut in funding for council tax support."
Free Schools to blame for lack of places, says Tory
Sunday 1 December
Cllr David Simmonds, Chair of the LGA's Children and Young People Board, warned in The Independent on Sunday that the Government's flagship free schools policy was in danger of limiting parents' choice of schooling for their children. The article also reported that the LGA had pointed out to the Treasury in advance of the pre-budget statement that only 58 per cent of all new school places under the free schools project last year were in areas with the greatest need of expansion.
Councils should make better use of social media
Saturday 30 November
Guardian online reported the LGA's networked councillor project or the Make Things Do Stuff campaign as a successful example of councils using social media. The report investigated the benefits of social media to help councils increase engagement, communicate change successfully, find innovation and all at a fraction of the cost of more traditional communications.
9 December 2013
6 December 2013
29 November 2013
22 November 2013
15 November 2013
8 November 2013