Agenda item

Child Poverty Strategy and Action Plan - Progress Report


The Chief Executive submitted a report which set out the work that had been undertaken to date, in accordance with the report to the Cabinet on 14 April 2011 (minute 386 refers), to develop a Wirral Child Poverty Strategy and action plan in partnership with local organisations and agencies, including the voluntary, community and faith sector. This included the contribution of the Wirral Child and Family Poverty Working Group, which had been established to make recommendations to the Council and its partners about a local Child Poverty Strategy and action plan. 


The report also provided a progress report on the £10,000 policy option agreed by the Cabinet and Council in February 2010 to invest in targeted engagement with Wirral organisations and local communities and set out the proposed next steps in relation to the further development of the action plan.


The report also detailed the links between Wirral’s local approach and the development of a strategy for the Liverpool City Region, which had been shaped by the City Region Commission on Poverty and Life Chances, chaired by Frank Field MP.


At its meeting of 13th October 2011, Cabinet:


“(a) Noted the progress that has been made to date in relation to the development of a child and family poverty strategy for Wirral, including the excellent contribution of the Wirral Child and Family Poverty Working Group, and approves the draft strategy and initial action plan at Appendix 1;


(b) Authorised the Chief Executive to undertake further consultation on the draft strategy and prepare a final version for approval and adoption by the Council and partners;


(c) Authorises the Chief Executive (and any other officer nominated by him) to undertake any other steps and action incidental and conducive to finalising the strategy and progressing the action plan, including working with relevant partners and stakeholders as considered necessary and appropriate;


(d) Agreed that the Wirral Child and Family Poverty Working Group should continue to meet to oversee the further development of the strategy.”


Cabinet further resolved to make tackling child poverty a key priority for 2012/13 and to make sure that all Council strategies and plans were properly amended to include this as a major priority for the Council, with subsequent referral to Council as appropriate.


Jane Morgan, Corporate Policy Manager in the Department of Regeneration, Housing and Planning, responded to comments from Members and informed the meeting that a more detailed 3 year action plan would be brought back to meetings of the Cabinet and this Committee in the new year, once more work had been undertaken.


Resolved –


(1) That this Committee notes the progress made to date on the draft child poverty strategy.


(2) That regular updates on progress on the implementation of the recommendations as agreed by Cabinet on the 13th October 2011 be brought to this Committee particularly in relation to:


·  Workstream 2: Targeting our efforts to make work the best route out of poverty for Wirral families and;

·  Workstream 5: Recognise and support the role that safe and high quality neighbourhoods and thriving communities can have in transforming lives

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