On behalf of its membership, the cross-party LGA regularly submits to Government
consultations, briefs parliamentarians and responds to a wide range of parliamentary inquiries. Our recent
responses to government consultations and parliamentary briefings can be found here.
The LGA welcomes the opportunity to provide a response to the Government’s consultation on improving victims’ experiences of the criminal justice system. The following submission outlines our key points on behalf of our LGA membership, although local authorities may also look to respond directly to this consultation.
On the face if it this seems like a straightforward proposal with the aim to ensure that the existing Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) guidance is followed, which is what already happens for the vast majority of local authority debt. However, the results of the proposed changes will be more far reaching than that and there will be significant financial consequences for some councils which will need to be addressed.
Councils have a vital role in supporting children and young people’s mental wellbeing and ensuring they have the support they need to thrive. We are calling for a cross-Whitehall strategy that puts children and young people at the heart of recovery.
Delivery of the new building safety regime is dependent on council building control and the fire service. The funding to achieve the necessary increase in skills and capacity has not yet been agreed and we are concerned that it may be inadequate. The LGA asks that new funding is administered to councils and fire services to deliver this new work.
The LGA supports the aims of the Down Syndrome Bill, which would create a new duty on the Secretary of State to issue guidance to relevant authorities (health, education and local authorities in respect of social care and housing) on how to meet the specific needs of people with Down syndrome; and for relevant authorities to have due regard to the guidance in providing services.
The Government published the Reforming the Mental Health Act white paper in August 2021, which sets out proposed changes to the Mental Health Act 1983 (MHA) and wider reforms of policy and practice around it. This briefing summarises the key points of the white paper with regard to people with a learning disability and autistic people.
No leaseholder should have to pay the costs of making their homes safe and the Secretary of State’s threat to use the legal system to ensure developers meet their responsibilities to leaseholders is a positive step in the right direction. However, leaseholders are not the only innocent victims of the construction industry’s failure to build safe homes.
Currently, pedicabs are exempt from the regulations which cover taxis and private hire vehicles. They do not need a licence to operate, are able to set their own prices and are not subject to checks on the safety and ability of their drivers, or the road worthiness of their vehicles. Councils have been made aware of various issues involving pedicabs, including unsafe driving, noise nuisance and pavement parking.
The National Safe and Wellbeing Review Programme was identified as part of the NHSE response to the Safeguarding Adult Review (SAR) that will be undertaken to check the safety and wellbeing of all people with a learning disability and autistic people (children, young people, and adults) who were in any mental health hospital, learning disability or autism inpatient setting and including people on Section 17 leave funded by clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) or provider collaboratives, NHSEi specialist commissioning on 31 October 2021. The reviews are expected to be completed by 31 January 2022.
LGA polling in June 2021 found that 73 per cent of respondents most trusted their local councils compared to 17 per cent that most trusted government when it came to local decision making. Based on the results of this polling, government should strongly consider forming a close working relationship with councils, via the LGA, to help facilitate consumers in making the right technical and economic choices.