Protecting vulnerable adults and children
Thriving residents outcome: vulnerable adults and children feel safe and are protected
Joint targeted area inspection (JTAI)
Ofsted, the Care Quality Commission, HMI Constabulary and HMI Probation undertook a joint targeted area inspection (JTAI) in September 2017 of how agencies working with children respond to abuse and neglect. Inspectors made a number of positive comments about strong collaborations, good support provided to staff and our commitment to improvement. This is "resulting in many children receiving a timely and appropriate response to reduce risk and the impact of neglect." We will also address recommendations made in the JTAI.
We fund the Proud Trust to hold fortnightly youth groups for young people aged 13 to 19 (up to 25 for additional needs) who identify as LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning and other). Young people named the groups 'Phoenix', and they offer participants a safe place with fun activities and opportunities, plus the chance to meet other LGBTQ+ young people.
Domestic Violence and Abuse Strategy
Our Domestic Violence and Abuse strategy serves to raise awareness of what domestic abuse is and what services and communities can do about it. During 2017-18, we saw a significant increase in reported incidents of abuse, up by almost 14 per cent in the last year. This is a positive statistic as higher reporting rates are likely the result of:
- increased awareness and training about domestic violence across partners, especially within GP practices
- the integration of independant domestic violence advocates within multi-agency teams
- better front line staff training to support victims
- raised awareness among victims abotu partner behaviours and the increased confidence to come forward
- a lower tolerence of abuse and abusive behaviour in general.
The proportion of repeat domestic abuse cases has fallen from just over 20 per cent to 17 per cent.
Developing real solutions to problems faced by those in poverty
The West Cheshire Poverty Truth Commission, established in 2016-17, aims to address gaps in services and inequalities across the borough.
Fifteen residents, now called Community Inspirers, came together with civic, business and faith leaders to develop real solutions to problems faced by those in poverty. Three priorities were identified: mental health and wellbeing, person-centred approaches and benefit systems.
The commission has had a considerable impact in the last year, especially on the Community Inspirers themselves, who have grown in confidence, secured paid and voluntary work, and become advocates for businesses across the community.
The Community Inspirers visited the House of Commons on 30 January 2018 to speak to MPs and voice their views on welfare reform and possible solutions. A pledge was introduced, encouraging businesses to sign up and promote respectful treatment of all people. The commission has also worked with local services to improve engagement with residents.
A second West Cheshire Poverty Truth Commission is due to begin early 2019.
Poverty Truth Commission