Prepare for the worst and hope for the best
In the current climate all that local government can do is prepare a range of scenarios and reactions, says Gary Fielding. 'It feels like the best approach is to prepare for the worst, hope for the best and be unsurprised with anything in-between.'
No solution in sight for social care crisis
Sir Keir’s criticism is spot-on, says Heather Jameson. Social care during the pandemic has been a national disgrace, and 'constantly pushing social care solutions into the long grass is unforgivable'.
Meeting citizens’ expectations after the pandemic
Hilary Jones highlights how COVID-19 has been the catalyst for shifting up a gear when it comes to communicating with local residents, providing the environment and the permission for digital to take centre stage.
EXCLUSIVE: Croydon reaches out for MHCLG lifeline
Croydon LBC is understood to have made initial contact with the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) as it approaches Section 114 territory, The MJ understands.
Leicester should be 'klaxon warning' to councils
The example of Leicester should be a ‘klaxon warning’ to councils that government ‘will not hesitate to scapegoat municipalities wherever and whenever it suits’, according to an academic.
Leicester’s Politicised Lockdown: A warning to local government
Jonathan S. Davies says government's 'failure to admit responsibility for the sweatshops, whilst indulging in racialised smears' is both 'a malicious attack on Britain’s leading multicultural city' and a threat to the fight against COVID-19.
EXCLUSIVE: Labour support for bigger pay rise revealed
Labour has distanced itself from rival parties’ decision to block the Local Government Association (LGA) lobbying for a bigger pay rise for council workers.
Will coronavirus kill democratic local government?
The Government might welcome an end to elected local government, say Jonathan Davies and Dr Arianna Giovannini. But they argue this outcome would be ‘dangerously short-sighted’.
Ombudsman creates specialist coronavirus unit ahead of complaints service reopening
A specialist unit has been created to deal with coronavirus complaints by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman as it resumes its work.
Proceed until apprehended
In the wake of the first wave of the pandemic, we should not wait for national government to approve, but proceed to set the agenda instead, says director of the Leadership Centre Joe Simpson.
Now the clapping has stopped the listening needs to start
John Knight says COVID-19 has given citizens a much sharper focus on the local services they value and need. It’s time for councils to open a conversation with residents on what they want for the future, he believes
Luton forced into unavoidable cuts
Luton BC’s boss has said the council has done all it can but has no other choice than to cut 365 jobs and frontline services.
Where do we go from here to ‘level up’ this country?
The survival of the local state might be at stake, but this ‘failing’ is not of its own making, says Dr Arianna Giovannini. Our ‘broken centralised system of governance is the root cause of the meltdown that most councils are facing’, she adds.
Level up, bounce back - wise up
Our recovery will be even slower, more difficult and unequal if it depends on waiting for Whitehall to formulate a plan from the centre, argues director of IPPR North Sarah Longlands.
EXCLUSIVE: Lincoln and Stevenage latest to make Section 114 warning
Lincoln City Council and Stevenage BC have become the latest local authorities to warn ministers they may soon have to consider issuing a Section 114 notice.
Putting local resilience under the spotlight
Views are mixed on how local resilience forums have performed during the COVID-19 emergency. Have austerity, Brexit planning and central Government’s original command and control approach taken their toll? Dan Peters reports.
Welsh care workers to receive £500 bonus
All care workers in Wales will receive a £500 payment in recognition of their work during the COVID-19 pandemic, Welsh first minister Mark Drakeford has announced.
Let’s make the argument now for the world we want to live in
Will the impact of coronavirus mean more state investment or 10 more years of austerity to pay for the Government’s interventions, asks Dr Jonathan Carr-West.
‘We must speak truth to power’
HR directors gathered for a Penna/The MJ round table to discuss a service with an ‘identity crisis’ – and whether they can drive disruption and transformation at pace and scale. Heather Jameson reports.
Pulling together to help those in need
Jacqui Gedman tells Dan Peters that Kirkless MBC is up to the challenge of COVID-19, but it is ‘much bigger than the council – it’s a real community effort’.