Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Communities and Equalities Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 25th June, 2020 2.00 pm

Venue: Virtual meeting - Webcast at

Contact: Rachel McKeon 


No. Item


Councillor Sue Murphy

Additional documents:


The Chair paid tribute to Councillor Sue Murphy, who had recently passed away, and the Committee paused to reflect on her life.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 232 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meetings held on 5 March 2020 and 11 March 2020.

Additional documents:


Councillor Doswell requested that her apologies be recorded in the minutes for the 5 March meeting, to which the Chair agreed.




1.            To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 5 March 2020 as a correct record, subject to the above amendment.


2.            To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 11 March 2020 as a correct record.


COVID-19 - Update pdf icon PDF 533 KB

Report of the Strategic Director (Neighbourhoods)


This report provides a brief summary of the current situation in the city in relation to COVID-19 and an update on the work progressing in Manchester in relation to areas within the remit of this Committee. 

Additional documents:


The Committee received a report of the Strategic Director (Neighbourhoods) which provided a brief summary of the current situation in the city in relation to COVID-19 and an update on the work progressing in Manchester in relation to areas within the Committee’s remit.


Officers referred to the main points and themes within the report which included:


  • Public health;
  • Financial impact on the Council;
  • Response and planning ahead for the recovery;
  • The reset of the Our Manchester Strategy;
  • Support to residents who were at risk during the pandemic;
  • Update on the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) sector;
  • Community safety;
  • Parks, Leisure and Events;
  • Libraries, Galleries and Culture; and
  • Equality, diversity and inclusion.


The Chair thanked Council staff, partner organisations, charities and community groups for their work during this difficult time.  The three Executive Members in attendance highlighted the work in their areas including the establishment of the Manchester Community Response Hub to support vulnerable residents with COVID-19 related issues, the work to enable emergency food provision from New Smithfield Market and the work of other teams across the Council, including the Anti-Social Behaviour Team, Cemeteries and Parks and thanked the officers involved.  A Member also highlighted the work of the faith sector during this time and another Member praised the role of the We Love Manchester charity and Forever Manchester.


Some of the key points that arose from the Committee’s discussions were:


  • To recognise that Manchester had led the way in testing people leaving hospital and going into care homes;
  • That those accessing support and emergency food provision included people who needed help because they were shielding for medical reasons but also people experiencing food poverty, who could require longer term support from other services;
  • Concern about what would happen if there was a second wave of the virus and the financial implications for the Council;
  • Digital exclusion, including how the Council was communicating with people who did not have internet access;
  • Challenges for the VCSE sector, including additional costs such as Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), additional cleaning, hand sanitisers and signage and volunteers who were medically vulnerable and might not want to return to their volunteering roles due to the risk of infection;
  • The Council and Greater Manchester Police (GMP)’s strategy for dealing with breaches of lockdown;
  • Plans to re-open libraries and Manchester Art Gallery;
  • The temporary closure of leisure centres, including the financial implications of this;
  • The letter sent to the Secretary of State raising issues about the recovery of the culture sector in Manchester; and
  • The race review of the Council’s workforce.


The Executive Member for Adult Health and Wellbeing confirmed that the level of infections was being closely tracked and that planning was taking place for a range of scenarios, including a second wave or ebbs and flows in virus transmission.  She emphasised the financial consequences the Council was facing due to the pandemic and the importance of the national government providing the promised funding to local councils.  She recognised that the people accessing emergency food  ...  view the full minutes text for item 25.


Overview Report pdf icon PDF 252 KB

Report of the Governance and Scrutiny Support Unit


This report provides the Committee with details of key decisions that fall within the Committee’s remit and an update on actions resulting from the Committee’s recommendations. The report also includes the Committee’s work programme, which the Committee is asked to amend as appropriate and agree.

Additional documents:


A report of the Governance and Scrutiny Support Unit was submitted. The overview report 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.


The Chair requested an update on the proposed Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) around an abortion-providing clinic.  The City Solicitor advised that she would send an email to the Members of the Committee once she had more information.




1.            To note the report.


2.            To request that the City Solicitor provide Members with an update on the proposed PSPO around an abortion-providing clinic.