Posted on October 12th, 2009
Total Place is a huge opportunity for public services across the sub-region of Coventry, Solihull and Warwickshire to better understand where they can make an impact by working collectively. It is my expectation that by doing this we’ll be able to drive out significant waste and duplication. At the same time, it will enable us to develop solutions to issues that are common to us all, in ways that make sense locally rather than imposing models from the centre.
Within the sub-region there is a good history of working together for the benefit of residents and businesses. Nonetheless Total Place will challenge us all to let go of organisational boundaries, and think in very different ways about the future of public service. I feel that local authorities can drive this through the local strategic partnerships and local public service boards, working collectively to harness the leadership roles of public agencies, including the voluntary and third sectors. The Total Place initiative needs strong leadership and a sense of energy, which can be provided by elected councillors. Relationships with central agencies will be tested and strengthened by working together on issues.
The process of completing a high-level count for all expenditure by the public services is the first step to delivering more accountability for local spending. Local communities should be able to influence this, which can only happen when they understand what is spent, and how.
Work on our theme of children and young people is hugely important to public services across the sub-region. Ensuring that young people have positive experiences of education and go on to contribute to society, that children and young people feel safe in their communities though reducing bullying, and that they are healthy and well by the time they start school are key to all localities. Different areas will achieve this in different ways, the Total Place initiative however offers an opportunity to share the learning from this sub-region with the public service nationally. I’m very excited to be a part of the Total Place pilot, and we all look forward to delivering the work streams.
Councillor Ken Taylor, Leader of Coventry City Council
Read more about the work underway in Coventry, Solihull and Warwickshire at their pilot page.