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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Room 3A, Guildhall, Swansea. View directions

Contact: Michelle Roberts, Scrutiny Officer 

Items
No. Item

1.

Disclosure of Personal and Prejudicial Interests.

Minutes:

None

2.

Notes and Conveners Letter pdf icon PDF 248 KB

Notes and Conveners letter from previous meeting on 14 November 2017

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The previous notes and Conveners letter were noted.

3.

Community Cohesion in Swansea - Q&A Session pdf icon PDF 129 KB

Q&A Session with

·         Declan Cahill, South Wales Police

·         Paul Thomas, Resilience

·         Jane Whitmore, Poverty and Prevention Swansea

·         Riaz Hassan, Regional Community Cohesion Coordinator (Swansea, N&PT, Bridgend)

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Working Group invited Jane Whitmore from Poverty and Prevention, Declan Cahill from South Wales Police and Riaz Hassan the Western Bay Regional Community Cohesion Co-ordinator.  They gave a presentation and discussed the issues with Councillors.

 

The following issues were discussed:

 

·         Role of the Western Bay Regional Community Cohesion Co-ordinator.  Welsh Government fund 8 Co-ordinators across Wales to take forward mainstreaming community cohesion work across the region.  The role to drive partnership working and implement delivery of national objectives at the local level.  The Co-ordinator role is strategic rather than operational.  This is the only funding that is available for community cohesion work.

·         No resources specifically for community cohesion.  So it is about mainstreaming cohesion in everything we do, embedding it in to our activities.

·         Enabling of different group of people to get on well together and developing response in differences in our society.  Examples of projects delivering on this:

   Our Abertawe – Celebrating Swansea Together

   Local employability programmes

   Disability Liaison Group

   Swansea LGBT Forum

   Regional BAME Forum

   Student and resident initiatives

   EID in the Park

·         The can be a misconception in communities. Learning from and sharing different cultural practice helps with cohesion.  There is a need to develop more and promote positive images and tackle misconceptions. Panel though Myth Busting leaflets and excellent idea that should be shared and used more widely, available both in hard copy but also online.  It can then be shared by Councillors through their social media like Twitter or Facebook.

·         Messages are being relayed in communities need to be current and not based upon old media.

·         What is and can be done with children and young people around perceptions:

   Deliver sessions in schools, take children to mosque

   Good religious education delivered working with local groups

   Deliver this part of the curriculum positively using myth busting techniques

·         Enabling of different groups of people to get on well together and developing respect in the difference in our society.  Practical examples of projects delivering on the statement about:

   Intercultural Cities Network

   Hate Crime awareness week online training

   Anti-Slavery/Human Trafficking awareness

   Mosque Open Day

   School Initiatives like show racism the red card

   Syrian Resettlement Programme, Refugees and Asylum Seeker support.  Feedback on settling of Syrian families really positive.

·         Barriers to improving community cohesion and how we are addressing them and the outcomes.

   Welsh Language Promotion

   Loss of Communities First Programme

   Promotion and awareness raising…WG agreed that need to do more of this

   Swansea City of Sanctuary

   Corporate training via e-learning programmes

   Swansea Pride

   Mistrust of Police and the Establishment.  Local community cohesion police team newly established, with new ways of working and focusing clearly on cohesion matters

   Negative and misleading media stories.  Swansea and its partners need to use the media and their own communication mechanisms like social media to raise awareness, for myth busting and to highlight positive stories. Could invite local media to events  and see if they will publish stories busting myths

·         Monitoring of success and evidence on progress and outcomes

   Equality Impact Assessments

   Annual Review of Strategic Equality Plan

   Monitoring of learning and employment outcomes

   Disability Liaison Group

   Evaluation of staff training

   Monitoring of Hate Crime incidents

·         Partnership working in practice and examples and areas for improvement

   Professional partners tend to work well together.  There needs to be improvement in third sector organisations working together when they have the same aim or objectives/outcomes

   English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)

   More initiatives need to try to be inclusive of a cross section of the community rather than just BAME/asylum seeker and refugee for example as this will continue to segregate

   It is about all organisations working together with the aim of breaking down barriers and improving community cohesion.

   Swansea Pride a hugely positive and enjoyable event.

·         National Objectives and local examples in Swansea

   Community Safety themed radio campaigns.  Monthly short community safety messages, currently with Heart Radio.

   Hate Crime/Anti-slavery/LGBT awareness weeks

   Gypsy Roma Traveller and Human Trafficking awareness events and training

   Workshop Raising Awareness on PREVENT

·         Engagement with Ward Councillors and what does current support and involvement look like

   Local employability programmes involvement

   Employability Ward Member Briefings (Community First wards)

   PACT meetings

   Cabinet Member 1-1 briefings

   Small Steps training would be useful for councillors (Jane Whitmore will enquire whether we can get WG to come back and do more sessions in Swansea

   Working Group agreed that more could be done with Councillors including:  How can delivery of community cohesion be improved through more involvement of local ward councillors

§  Councillors can be champions for community cohesion in their communities

§  Need practical ways of being able to do this for example access to and use of Myth Buster information

§  They could help communicate messages into and out of communities

§  Access to information/development session on for example Anti-Slavery.  Could some sessions be face to face as well as those online?

·         Key achievements in mainstreaming community cohesion, examples that are directly benefiting local residents/communities

   Joint Local Authority and South Wales Police on Sex Workers

   Street Vulnerability Multi-agency Risk Assessment Conference.  Police lead on this. Police gather information on those who are vulnerable and causing issues in city centres.  Then those identified discussed at conference to find solutions to their vulnerabilities and hopefully reducing those issues in city centres.  Arresting not always best way forward for those people, need to be SMARTER in what we do.  Better to address the underlying issues of individuals involved where possible.

   Students and residents joint initiative in Brynmill

   Increased awareness of Anti-slavery and Human Trafficking

   Syrian Resettlement Programme has employment strand that sits in Workways

4.

Next Steps

Working Group will discuss and make conclusions/recommendations that will be put in a letter to the Cabinet Member for Stronger Communities.

Minutes:

A letter to the Cabinet Members for Better Communities will be sent reflected the views and recommendations of the Working Group.

Letter to Cabinet Member pdf icon PDF 107 KB

Letter Cabinet Member pdf icon PDF 303 KB

 

Contacts:
© 2011 City and County of Swansea
Civic Centre, Oystermouth Road, Swansea. SA1 3SN. Tel: 01792 636000 Fax: 01792 636340