Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Communities and Equalities Scrutiny Committee - Tuesday, 9th January, 2024 2.00 pm

Venue: Council Antechamber, Level 2, Town Hall Extension. View directions

Contact: Charlotte Lynch 


No. Item



To allow Members an opportunity to [a] declare any personal, prejudicial or disclosable pecuniary interests they might have in any items which appear on this agenda; and [b] record any items from which they are precluded from voting as a result of Council Tax/Council rent arrears; [c] the existence and nature of party whipping arrangements in respect of any item to be considered at this meeting. Members with a personal interest should declare that at the start of the item under consideration.  If Members also have a prejudicial or disclosable pecuniary interest they must withdraw from the meeting during the consideration of the item.


Councillors Good and Ogunbambo declared personal interests in item 9 (Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) Infrastructure Contract Update).



[14:00-14:05] Minutes pdf icon PDF 104 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 5 December 2023.


Decision: That the minutes of the previous meeting, held on 5 December 2023, be approved as a correct record.


[14:05-14:45] Crime and Policing pdf icon PDF 612 KB

Report of Greater Manchester Police (GMP).


This report provides an update on GMP’s City of Manchester division’s journey to improvement.


The committee considered a report of Greater Manchester Police (GMP) which provided an update on the City of Manchester division’s journey to improvement.


Key points and themes within the presentation included:


  • Improvements in communication between GMP and partners and the community;
  • Improvements to prevent and reduce harm;
  • Operations to tackle residential and business burglary; and
  • Ambitions for future investment into emergency response resources and police student training.


Some of the key points and queries that arose from the committee’s discussion included:


  • Commending GMP officers and staff for their service to Manchester and its residents;
  • Staff turnover and how greater consistency could be ensured;
  • If neighbourhood patrol boundaries would be changed to align with ward boundaries;
  • Poor communication of the decision to end university policing patrols;
  • Suggesting that GMP devise individual ward plans and create dedicated email addresses for each ward for residents and members to report issues to;
  • The rationale behind relocating or redeploying police officers;
  • Noting a need for better direct communication and meetings with members in North Manchester;
  • The need for better communication overall, citing that members sometimes received information on crime in their area through social media or word of mouth rather than directly from GMP;
  • How GMP communicated with victims of crime;
  • What changes residents could expect to see in the next 12 months; and
  • Call-handling and police response times.


The Statutory Deputy Leader stated that the Council had a strong working relationship with GMP and the work, lines of communication and regular briefings which had been in place since the Chief Superintendent took up his post were invaluable. He recognised some challenges but reiterated the positive collaboration between the Council and GMP, particularly in neighbourhood policing. 


The Chief Superintendent, GMP attended the meeting and stated that the force had strong communication methods with the Council but recognised that there may have been occasions where members did not feel fully informed. He recognised that it was important to understand different viewpoints, capacity and implications of decisions and explained that the Statutory Deputy Leader of the Council provided a quarterly forum for members, which he also attended, to give a broad overview of crime in the city and an opportunity to ask questions or raise concerns. He stated that GMP had committed to a neighbourhood policing structure consisting of an Inspector and Sergeant and that information on the responsible officers for each area was available online. He also updated the committee on the force’s IT system, which he said was addressing some previous limitations.


He recognised that the nature of policing in addition to retirement and seeking other development opportunities led to staff turnover, but more vacancies would be filled as student police officers finished their studies in April 2024.


In response to queries regarding ensuring consistency between departing and new officers, the Chief Superintendent, GMP acknowledged the importance of structured handovers and communication with members and residents. He also recognised that there was a significant period in which most police forces did not recruit but this  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.


[14:45-15:30] Joint Targeted Area Inspection (JTAI) Serious Youth Violence pdf icon PDF 113 KB

Report of the Strategic Director (Children and Education Services).


This report informs the Communities and Equalities Scrutiny Committee of the findings from the recent JTAI in respect of Serious Youth Violence and next steps.


Additional documents:


The committee considered a report of the Strategic Director (Children and Education Services) which presented the findings of a recent JTAI in respect of Serious Youth Violence, which took place between 25 September and 13 October 2023.


Key points and themes within the report included:


  • Providing an introduction and background to JTAIs;
  • Manchester was the first authority in the country to be inspected under a new inspection framework;
  • The scope of the Inspection;
  • The overall findings of the inspection, which were positive; and
  • 6 areas for improvement were identified and a multi-agency action plan had been developed in response.


Some of the key points and queries that arose from the committee’s discussion included:


  • That the action plan, policing and multi-agency approach should be child-centred and trauma-informed;
  • The key areas that would be considered in a child’s Education, Care and Health Plan (ECHP);
  • Highlighting a recommendation made by a recent Task and Finish Group on crime and antisocial behaviour for the Council to encourage Youth Outreach Services across the city to adopt a consistent approach to tackling ASB and barriers to reporting experienced by children and young people, and whether this could be incorporated into the JTAI action plan;
  • Highlighting issues with the use of jargon and acronyms in the action plan;
  • Resources and capacity, with particular reference to Children and Adolescence Mental Health Service (CAMHS);
  • Expressing concern over lack of timescales within the action plan with regards to CAMHS referrals;
  • What work was undertaken to prevent children from being excluded from school;
  • How child-centred policing would reduce the overrepresentation of BAME children in the criminal justice system;
  • Noting that the Inspectors highlighted the underrepresentation of girls in referrals to the complex safeguarding hub (CSH), in relation to known levels of need, and that there was no reference in the action plan as to how this would be addressed;
  • How these actions would be evaluated and the timescales for this;
  • What programmes and interventions were in place to prevent young people from reoffending; and
  • Whether the action plan was robust enough to deliver further improvements in addressing serious youth violence.


The Statutory Deputy Leader stated that the Joint Targeted Area Inspection was an important and positive piece of work and emphasised that the Council strived to ensure that improvements were made in regard to tackling serious youth violence. He explained that the Inspector’s report highlighted a number of strengths, including partnership working, and some challenges which he stated were important to recognise in order to continuously improve. He also thanked officers who were involved in the inspection on behalf of the Executive.


The Strategic Director (Children and Education Services) advised that representatives from the Council, Youth Justice Service, NHS and GMP were in attendance. He explained that the JTAI was the first inspection held nationally and involved 4 inspectors from key statutory agencies undertaking a ‘deep dive’ into a particular theme or issue to assess the local authority area’s response. He further explained that the inspection assessed strategy and partnership; interventions  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.


[15:30-15:35] Overview Report pdf icon PDF 126 KB

Report of the Governance and Scrutiny Support Unit


This monthly report includes the recommendations monitor, relevant key decisions, the Committee’s work programme and any items for information.


The committee considered a report of the Governance and Scrutiny Support Unit which contained a list of key decisions yet to be taken within the Committee’s remit, responses to previous recommendations and the Committee’s work programme, which the Committee was asked to approve.




That the report be noted, and the work programme agreed.



[15:35] Exclusion of Press and Public

The officers consider that the following item or items contains exempt information as provided for in the Local Government Access to Information Act and that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information. The Committee is recommended to agree the necessary resolutions excluding the public from the meeting during consideration of these items. At the time this agenda is published no representations have been made that this part of the meeting should be open to the public.




That the press and public be excluded during consideration of the following item which involved consideration of exempt information relating to the financial or business affairs of particular persons and public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighed the public interest in disclosing the information.



[15:35-16:00] Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) Infrastructure Contract Update

A verbal report will be provided at the meeting.


The Assistant Chief Executive and the Programmes and Policy Manager (Communities and VCSE) provided a confidential verbal update on the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) Infrastructure Contract.


The committee discussed a recent bidding process, monitoring requirements and the timescales involved in the contract. It was agreed to bring a quarterly update report to the committee.




That the update be noted.