Venue: Wardleworth Community Centre, South Street, Rochdale OL16 2EP. View directions
Contact: Gary Finch - Tel. 01706 924817
The meeting was chaired by Beryl Lloyd. The Chair introduced and welcomed all to the meeting and reminded Forum members to observe and respect the code of conduct.
PACT meeting - Greater Manchester Police
The Forum informed PCSO Mahmood of the following:
· Drug dealing on Hamer Hall Crescent
· Drug dealing and incidents of anti-social behaviour on Gower Street, Hector Avenue and Yorkshire Street
· Incidents of anti-social behaviour and drug dealing on Kitchen Street.
PCSO Mahmood informed the Forum that it was crucial that incidents of criminal activity are reported to assist with the collection of intelligence. The following contact numbers can be used to report incidents:
In response to a question PCSO Mahmood informed the Forum that there are three PCSO’s and one Officer available to deal with incidents in the Ward.
A resident also raised concerns that he had taken the time to attend the police station with evidence of criminal activity on Greenbank Road, yet had received no feedback from any Officer. PCSO Mahmood indicated she would investigate this matter.
The minutes were approved as a correct record.
Matters Arising: The Forum was asked if the minutes of the two Central Rochdale Area Forums should be shared with both meetings.
It was agreed that the minutes of the two Central Rochdale Area Forums should be circulated to both meetings.
Public engagement on Council savings
Julie Murphy, Head of Finance Support attended the meeting to present information on a public engagement exercise called ‘The Budget Challenge’.
It was explained to the Forum that the Council has faced significant financial challenges since 2011, the start of the austerity period and continues to do so. An animated film was screened which provided:
· General information about the Council.
· The services the Council currently delivers.
· The financial challenges faced by the Council going forward.
· How the Council has responded so far.
· What the Council is looking to do.
· An explanation of how residents can contribute to this exercise.
The Forum where invited to suggest ideas on ways the Council could save money. Comments received, included:
“The Council needs to re-think its recycling policy”
“Increase Council Tax / Business rates”
“Raise charges for Council services”
“Reduce managerial posts”
Elaine Grace, Community Engagement Officer, attended the meeting to inform the Forum of the role and purpose of Healthwatch Rochdale.
The Forum was informed that Healthwatch Rochdale (HWR) is the local consumer champion of Health and Social Care Services. HWR have statutory powers to ensure that the voice of the general public is heard.
HWR gathers feedback from the general public about their experiences of Health and Social Care services. HWR collate and analyse the feedback received from the general public and report this to the Clinical Commissioning Group, the Local Authority and other service providers both locally and nationally.
HWR provides a signposting service, an independent complaints advocacy service, 1-2-1 conversations with staff and drop in sessions across the four Townships. Forthcoming sessions will be held at Number One Riverside on the 28th January, 25th February, 24th March, 28th April, 26th May, 23rd June and 28th July, 10am till 3pm.
Information about HWR can be found on www.healthwatchrochdale.org.uk
The following issues were raised by the Forum:
“NHS waiting times are a problem”
“The theory of Healthwatch is good”
“Because of the reductions in budgets, service users need to consider their expectations”
“Does HWR deal with formal complaints”?
“Obtaining a GP appointment is very difficult”
“The existence of Healthwatch Rochdale should be promoted more”
“Hospital discharge is a problem”
Responses to some of the above issues included:
HWR does deal with formal complaints.
A GP extended hour’s scheme is currently being piloted.
The implementation of Quality Service Standards is work in progress.
There are plans to develop an Healthwatch Rochdale newsletter which might help in promoting the work the organisation undertakes. It was also accepted that the local press needs to be better in advertising Clinical Commissioning Group meeting dates.
Waste Recycling Service in Rochdale
Andy Ogden and Hafiza Begum, Recycling Improvement and Participation Officers, Environmental Management attended the meeting to listen to feedback about the waste recycling service that was introduced into the Ward recently.
The Forum in general accepted that the new waste recycling service was working and that recently published recycling rates confirmed this. The calendar is also a positive introduction. However the feedback received tended to be of a negative nature. This included:
“The kitchen caddy needs to be bigger”
“The publicity material produced and delivered to promote the new service is not engaging enough”
“Implementation of the new service was rushed”
“Consultation on the new service was poor”
The Officers attending the meeting accepted that the implementation process was rushed, however lessons have been learned and improvements have been made. The services changes made were considerable.
Finally the Forum was reminded of what can be recycled in the light green, blue, brown and dark green bin.
The following issues were raised during the Open Forum:
1. A resident reported that two street lights were not working on Kitchen Street.
Action 1: Gary Finch will report.
2. Concerns were raised about the accidents that have occurred recently at the Townhead Junction.
3. A resident asked how he could obtain a permit to use the Council’s Waste Recycling Centre’s.
Action 2: Gary Finch will investigate and inform the resident.
4. Two representatives from ‘Youth Connections’ based in the Ward asked the Forum if they were willing to financially support the group to the value of £1200 to organise a weekend away for young people from the Wardleworth Area. The group would be visiting Burrs Activity Centre, Bury to experience team building and outdoor/indoor recreational activities. The purpose of this project would be to build the confidence of the young people and develop a range of skills.
The Forum agreed to support this initiative from Ward Funds.
5. A young person / representative from Gower Street Youth Base expressed concerns about the lack of support he had received from the local Ward Councillors in the attempts being made to save the Youth Base from closure. He asked that these concerns be forwarded to the Ward Councillors.
It was also stated that a petition had been handed to Cabinet Members in a bid to save the Youth Base.
Action 3: Gary Finch to inform the Ward Councillors
No issues were raised.
Date and time of the next meeting
Monday 25th January 2016
St Patrick’s RC Primary School, Foxholes Road, Rochdale.
6.30pm – 8.30pm
Thursday 10th March 2016
Wardleworth Community Centre, South Street, Rochdale.
6.30pm – 8.30pm