Coalition Cuts to Brent Council: Children and Families

I previously mentioned here, that I would provide greater detail to reduction in Central Government Grants allocated to Brent Council for Children and Families. In Summer 2010 the Government cut £1,882,000 to Brent Council’s Children and Families Grant.

The detail of Sarah Teather’s Government cuts stemming from the reduction in ‘hidden grants’ to Brent’s Children are impossible to justify or defend.

They include:

  • £68,000 reduction to care at home packages.
  • £101,000 reduction in grant to fund Connexions. This will lead to non-renewal of four staff contracts and reduce contracts with the voluntary sector. Connexions provide information and advice to people to help make the decisions and choices in their lives.
  • £26,000 grant to help tackle young people’s substance misuse. This could lead to a reduction in outreach work and targeted support.
  • £162,000 reduction in Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services.
  • £211,000 reduction in the Children’s Fund grant which could lead o a reduction of contracts for ESOL classes, parental support for vulnerable families, targeted sexual advice and support and an e-safety programme.
  • £27,000 reduction in Teenage Pregnancy Grant which could lead to reduced services provided to children in Brent at risk of becoming parents.
  • £45,000 reduction in the Youth Opportunities Fund which will lead to schemes being reduced or re-prioritised.
  • A whopping £326,000 reduction in the Think Family grant, which will lead to a reduction in support to parents which is available at universal as well as targeted levels as well as a reduction in the Family Intervention Programme.
  • £75,000 reduction in the Playbuilders grant which will lead to ceasing or scaling back of schemes that were already agreed to extend children’s play facilities.
  • £30,000 cut to the Brent Community Friends grant, which will lead to some loss in services that are provided directly to looked after children.

As the Government Minister in the Department for Education, it is atrocious that MP for Brent Central Sarah Teather is inflicting so much damage to Brent’s children. Especially to those who are most vulnerable as the outlined cuts mentioned above suggest.

Coalition Cuts to Brent Council: Performance Reward Grants

Further to my post of Central Government Grant reductions here, I mentioned that I would provide greater detail to reduction in Central Government Grants allocated to Brent Council. In particular, this blogpost will focus on reductions to the Performance Reward Grant.

I cannot stress the importance of Central Government Grants to Local Authorities. Brent Council receive around 80% of our funds from Central Government. 20% is raised through Council Tax.

In simplified terms, the Performance Reward Grant is awarded to Local Authorities to provide services. Reductions from the Coalition Government to our Performance Reward Grant impacted on multiple services. Below are just some of those impacted:

  • £71,000 cut to Domestic Violence Prevention Programme. This money contributes to an advocacy advice service.
  • £60,000 Volunteering Programme cut which was previously funded through the Performance Reward Grant.
  • £287,000 cut in Sports Development for disabled children and diversionary activities for children at risk of getting involved in crime schemes as well as encouraging adults to be more physically active.
  • £90,000 cut the Performance Reward Grant which was used for the Sustainability Green Zones scheme. Project support funding from National Government was halted resulting in the loss of two members of staff.
  • £155,000 cut to a range of work to tackle Climate Change. Brent may now only be able to pursue meeting statutory minimums in this area.
  • £100,000 cut to Library funds which was to be spent on improving library book stocks.
  • £83,000 cut to Private Housing Services which was set to be used to meet the demand needed for the Disabled Facilities Grant. This Growth would have provided two new surveyors for Brent.
  • £90,000 income maximisation cut which focused on reablement and hospital discharge projects. This was to support 500 people between the summer and March 2011.

Stay tuned for the hidden grant cuts to Children and Families Grants, the sector for which Brent Central MP Sarah Teather has Ministerial responsibility for throughout the whole country. The impact on cuts to these services to Brent is despicable. Especially seeing as we have a Government Minister imposing these cuts on our own children.