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Social Inclusion Toolkit

VIEWS: 32 PAGES: 18

									Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion Toolkit
2008-2010

Produced by the Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion Team, Suffolk County Council

Working version June 2008

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Working version June 2008

Contents:
1) What is this toolkit all about? 2) How to embed social inclusion & community cohesion: What do I need to do? 3) Some useful resources 4) Case studies from other parts of the country 5) Action check list 3 6

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1) What is this toolkit about?
The Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion Strategy 2008-2010 builds on the work that is already going on across the County Council to deliver services that meet the needs of the Suffolk population; in addition, the strategy demonstrates how all parts of the council can contribute to meeting the inclusion and community cohesion outcomes that have been included in Transforming Lives: Suffolk‟s Community Strategy 2008 – 2028. Inclusive communities is one of the 15 focus areas in the Community Strategy, while building cohesive communities is one of the 6 cross-cutting outcomes that threads across the whole of the strategy. Both of these outcomes have links into all of the theme areas, which in turn relate to all of the services delivered across the county. In order to support Suffolk County Council Service Offices, Specialist Support Functions and Delivery Agencies to meet their obligations to consider inclusion and community cohesion in all planning, practices and services this toolkit has been developed to act as a concise reference guide, with a checklist to help ensure that the five social inclusion principles are embedded across the organisation.

What are the five social inclusion principles and why should they be important to the work we do?
The five principles help to improve our understanding of what „inclusion‟ means in practice: 1. Understanding the needs of individuals, families, neighbourhoods and communities 2. Recognising, planning for and responding to the changing demography of Suffolk 3. Recognising that social exclusion can affect anybody 4. Understanding the specific barriers to participation faced by individuals and communities 5. Involving individuals and communities from diverse backgrounds in planning services By considering these five principles when planning and delivering the services we provide, we can ensure that there is fair treatment and access to services for everyone in Suffolk. Social Exclusion, Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion are inextricably linked. Sometimes the terms are used as one and the same. However, there are subtle differences between them as the following definitions demonstrate:

Social Exclusion
“Social Exclusion occurs when people or places suffer from a series of often multiple problems including: unemployment, poor skills, low incomes, poor housing, high crime

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environments, rural isolation, poor health and family breakdown”. Cabinet Office, Social Exclusion Unit

Social Inclusion
“Social Inclusion is the term given to policies and procedures, through which the problems causing social exclusion are tackled. Social Inclusion is not simply a remedy; it is also about preventing the circumstances that lead to exclusion”. Cabinet Office, Social Exclusion Unit While the majority of people living in Suffolk enjoy a good quality of life, there are certain groups and communities who suffer from social exclusion. It is the responsibility of the Council and its wider partners to respond to this, and to develop a more inclusive and prosperous environment for the people of Suffolk to work and live in.

Community Cohesion
“Community Cohesion is about recognising the impact of change and responding to it. It is about people within communities coming together to interact and participate with one another. Community Cohesion is principally the process that must happen in all communities to ensure different groups of people get on well together”. Commission on Integration and Community Cohesion 2007 It is useful to understand the distinctions between these terms. Awareness of the problems associated with social exclusion through to addressing, and preventing, those problems by ensuring policies and procedures follow the social inclusion principles leads to the outcome of community cohesion.

Will this create more work for us?
Following these five principles should not create more work, but should in fact facilitate improvements to the planning and delivery process. This will ensure that all individuals, groups and communities across Suffolk are given due consideration, and lead to appropriate services being planned and delivered. This toolkit uses the five principles to suggest some questions that should be referred to when preparing plans and policies. In addition, the Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion team are available to support all areas of the County Council in understanding and embedding these principles. See Section 3 for more information.

Does this really apply to the work I do?
Yes, the five social inclusion principles should be applied to everything that we do, whether we work in areas like:    Children and Young People‟s Services including Education Adult and Community Services including Libraries Economic development 4

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      

Highways planning Transport Waste management Rural services Green spaces Culture and sport Community safety

The five social inclusion principles also support the Securing the Future programme, because by taking time to assess the needs of individuals, groups and communities who could be affected by our plans, policies and practices, the resulting service delivery outcomes should be more efficiently delivered. This will ensure a best fit between the needs of the population within the resources available.

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2) How to embed social inclusion & community cohesion: What do I need to do?
Section 1 outlined how Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion is fundamental to all aspects of work at Suffolk County Council. Section 2 is intended to help you to ask the right questions about your policy planning or service development in order to ensure that the principles of social inclusion are embedded into the process.

The section is divided into 5 parts, each representing one of the Social Inclusion principles outlined in the previous section. Working through the
suggested questions will ensure that all five principles are effectively incorporated into any policy or service development. Each point starts with a question and is followed up by a short description of what this might mean in practical terms to decision makers. The action boxes suggest a small number of achievable actions that you will need to undertake to embed each principle.

Principle 1: Understanding the needs of individuals, families, neighbourhoods and communities
i) Have you considered how your service could impact on individuals, families, neighbourhoods and communities across Suffolk? The principles will help you to consider the impact that the policy or service will have on all sections of the community, including excluded and marginalised groups. Is your service accessible to users, have you considered the needs of anyone who may need to use it? Is it in the right place, publicised to the right people, at the right times? This applies as much to the design of a road junction as to provision of care for the elderly. Have you involved all relevant public and voluntary sector stakeholders in the development of the policy or service? For instance, the Community Safety Partnerships (CSPs); the Local Strategic Partnerships (LSPs) or voluntary and community sector partners. Do you really know what the needs are, have you consulted to find out? ACTIONS TO TAKE:    Consult actively with key external and internal stakeholders. Involve a range of user groups from the beginning of the process to ensure the policy or service is in line with the needs of all potential service users. Start to develop a system that allows you to identify who your customers are as well as routes to access them.

ii)

Principle 2: Recognising, planning for and responding to the changing demography of Suffolk
i) Have you used all the available data in the production of your policy or service development? The demography of Suffolk is changing. The importance of evidence based decision making cannot be understated. Any decision needs to be firmly supported by a robust base of data, be it qualitative or quantitative. Planning services must be based on an 6

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identified need. This reduces the risk of incorrect or misleading recommendations being put forward and also ensures that the policy or service reflects the reality on the ground in Suffolk, particularly at a time when the demography of Suffolk is going through a period of rapid change. More information on the „cohesiveness‟ of Suffolk can be obtained from the Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion Team. ii) Are you using the same evidence base as other policies within SCC? It is important that we work in a systematic and consistent way. This ensures that our policies and services are more likely to complement each other as they are all based on the same bed of evidence. Examples of research you could consult are the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment and the Community Cohesion Profiling Index; contact the Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion team for more information about these. ACTIONS TO TAKE:  Look at the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment for Suffolk 2008-2011 to see what relevant data already exists at: http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/NR/rdonlyres/7634347A-12DA-46A5-9D9852635E1177BE/0/JointStrategicNeedsAssessment.pdf Involve relevant planning and performance officers and external partners to make sure no key data or information has been excluded. Use the community cohesion indexing profiles to inform your policy or service about potential geographic areas most at risk of community cohesion issues. Information available via Allison Coleman: Allison.coleman@csu.suffolkcc.gov.uk or 01473 265160.

 

 Make sure your policy or service development is based on the same Case Study: evidence as your service plan. Accessibility Strategy 2006
The Suffolk County Council Accessibility Strategy, 2006 is a good example of how the principles of Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion can be embedded into policies. It aims to 'provide better opportunities to access employment, education, health, shopping and leisure, particularly for those people at risk from social exclusion...’. Although the Strategy was written before the production of this Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion Toolkit it contains some examples of the sort of best practices that need to happen if the five principles outlined in this section are to be embedded into policy or service development. The priorities identified within the Strategy recognise that social exclusion can affect anybody. They were the direct outcome of an extensive consultation process that actively involved a wide range of stakeholders, including Black and Minority Ethnic communities, parish councillors and older people. This means that the priorities reached were based on the true needs of all the main groups in the community, so that overall social exclusion was minimised. As well as the consultation, the Accessibility Strategy‟s priorities are also based on a large amount of raw data. This data allows the places with the poorest public transport links to be easily identified and targeted, and means that decision makers can be sure that the final priorities and action plans within it work effectively to minimise social exclusion and maximise social inclusion. The Accessibility Strategy 2006 can be found at: http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/TransportAndStreets/Policies/TransportStrategies.htm

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Principle 3: Recognising that social exclusion can affect anybody
i) Are you thinking about ALL groups in the community when developing your policy or service? Consideration needs to be given to individuals and communities facing exclusion due to lack of employment opportunities, poor education attainment, poor housing, poor health and issues exacerbated by rurality. In addition, Suffolk is an increasingly diverse county, which includes people from many different nationalities and backgrounds. You need to think about the impacts your policy or service development will have and make reasonable adjustments to respond to these different needs. Does the policy or service take into account that social exclusion can affect anybody? Some individuals and communities face multiple deprivation, and as their need is consequently more obvious, service planning to take account of their needs can be easier. However, many individuals and communities face social exclusion in relation to one or two factors, so their need is often hidden. For instance, individuals unable to access work opportunities due to lack of transport or lack of affordable housing in rural areas. Is there a risk that your policy or service development will unintentionally socially exclude any groups of the community? Although policies and services rarely intend to discriminate against any specific groups of people in the community, it does not mean that this will not happen in practice once the policy has been implemented. You will need to consider whether this may be the case with your policy or service. You may also find the information relating to Equality Impact Assessments useful, this can be found at: http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/CouncilAndDemocracy/EqualityAndDiversity/EqualityImpact Assessments.htm

ii)

iii)

ACTIONS TO TAKE:  It is vital that new and existing policies and service developments are Equality Impact Assessed in order to ensure that there is no adverse impact on groups and communities in Suffolk that may then be excluded from the decisions that are made. Consider whether your policy or service could be developed to have a positive impact on socially excluded groups. Liaise with the Social Inclusion, Community Cohesion and Diversity Team if you are concerned your policy or service development may unintentionally exclude any groups.

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Principle 4: Understanding the specific barriers to participation faced by individuals and communities
i) Do you understand the multi-dimensional nature of social exclusion? Poor housing is often related to lower income, lower educational attainment and poorer health. This shows how multiple barriers support and reinforce one another. Policies and services need to take this into account and where possible develop multiagency solutions in order to combat these barriers in an integrated way. Does the policy or service impact on any other issues? More often than not the answer will be yes. Have you thought about what other service provider(s) you could make links with to ensure that the plans you are developing have the best possible outcomes for service users? ACTIONS TO TAKE:  Consider any secondary impacts your policy or service development may have in terms of creating barriers to participation and take action to ensure these are removed. Read the Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion Strategy 2008, available on the website at: http://www.suffolk.gov.uk//SocIncCCStrategy24Jan08Cabinetversion.doc

ii)



Case Study: Suffolk Mental Health Strategy 2006
The Suffolk Mental Health Strategy 2006 is another example of how the principles of Social Inclusion can be incorporated into a policy or service development. The strategy advocates a „Whole Life‟ approach to recovery that includes the explicit promotion of social inclusion and the involvement of service users throughout their treatment. Mental health service users and carers were involved at an early stage in the development of the strategy and their input directly influenced its content. The key priorities they identified were early intervention and to be treated by skilled and professional staff. Easy access to services for all was also seen as important. As well as consultation with service users, the strategy was based on data about the demographics of Suffolk and the prevalence of various mental health problems. By using the raw data in conjunction with the input of service users from a broad range of groups, the Suffolk Mental Health Strategy was in line with the five principles of Social Inclusion.

More information on the Suffolk Mental Health Strategy 2006 can be found at: http://colin.suffolkcc.gov.uk/ServiceOfficesAndDelivery/ACS/WorkingInACS/Commissio ning.htm

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Principle 5: Involving individuals and communities from diverse backgrounds in planning services
i) Have you consulted key groups of stakeholders? Consultation with service users should wherever possible be undertaken when a new policy or service development is likely to affect them. The term „users‟ should be interpreted broadly and efforts should be made to include ALL sections of the community, including groups who may be marginalised or socially excluded. Is the method of consultation chosen appropriate for the group to be targeted? For instance, if Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) groups are being consulted, have any particular accessibility or language requirements they may have been addressed? If children are being consulted is the format used appropriate and in clear language? Are the results of the consultation fed back to those who contributed? By letting people know how their contribution was used to influence the ultimate decision they are more likely to want to be involved again in the future and feel like partners in the decision making process.

ii)

iii)

ACTIONS TO TAKE:  Refer to the Corporate Consultation and Involvement Strategy, which can be found at: http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/ConsultationInvolvementStrategy.pdf  When consulting with children, refer to the Having My Say guidance, via the following link: http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/Havingmysay.pdf  Where appropriate hold focus groups with socially excluded groups to understand their specific issues in relation to the proposed policy or service development  Make sure you let consultees know what influence, if any, their input had.  Consult through a range of media, e.g. the internet or the press.

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3. Some useful resources for embedding the Social Inclusion principles into you policy.
There is a wide pool of resources available to help you to incorporate the five social inclusion principles into your policies and service delivery. The list below highlights some of the key ones: 1) Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion Unit This Unit forms a part of the Chief Executives Service Office. The Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion team are available to be used as a resource by any planners and policy makers within Suffolk County Council., They can provide first hand advice on how to embed the five social inclusion principles into policies and service planning. For more information please see: http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/LeisureAndCulture/CommunityCohesion/ Contact Shammi Jalota, Social Inclusion & Diversity Manager, shammi.jalota@csu.suffolkcc.gov.uk, 01473 265161 or Allison Coleman, Social Inclusion Co-ordinator, allison.coleman@csu.suffolkcc.gov.uk, 01473 265160

2) Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) for Suffolk 2008-2011 This document was produced in late 2007 by Suffolk County Council, Suffolk Primary Care Trust and Great Yarmouth and Waveney Primary Care Trust. The JSNA contains a large body of data/evidence along with an analysis of the issues that are, and will be, faced in Suffolk across a broad range of issues. The areas covered include:      Health of the population Demographic profile, including age, ethnicity, disability and gender Wellbeing status of the population The economy Housing and many others.

The JSNA is a useful and easy to use first reference point for policy. With the JSNA now being used in this way by a wide range of services and organisations there will be increased coordination of much activity in Suffolk. The JSNA and supporting information can be found at: http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/NR/rdonlyres/7634347A-12DA-46A5-9D9852635E1177BE/0/JointStrategicNeedsAssessment.pdf 3) Community Safety Partnership (CSP) Strategic Needs Assessment The aim of this document is to assess and describe the trends and emerging issues in terms of crime, disorder, community safety and substance misuse for each CSP within Suffolk and make appropriate recommendations for action. The Strategic Needs Assessment will help to inform decision makers of the key priorities and areas of concern and should guide prioritisation of community safety issues and the adoption of relevant responses.

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It was produced by the Community Safety Unit Research and Information Team with the assistance of the Suffolk Constabulary analysts. Contact: John Sanderson 01473 265158 john.sanderson@csu.suffolkcc.gov.uk 4) Rural Deprivation Report The Oxford Consultants for Social Inclusion were commissioned to undertake the research on behalf of Suffolk Acre and Suffolk County Council. The aim of the research was to secure better evidence of the share of rural need in respect of a basket of indicators that are commonly used to determine deprivation. The report is available online: http://www.suffolkacre.org.uk/files/file/OCSI%20Suffolk%20Rural%20FINAL%20report %20v1%200.pdf 5) InfoLink This community services directory is an online source of community information. It is designed to:
  

Be a searching and signposting tool for the public, SCC staff and other organisations who provide services to the general public Provide organisers of local activities and services an easy and effective means of promotion Provide information on what activities are on offer and how services can be accessed

Suffolk InfoLink mainly contains information on organisations based in Suffolk, but does include national and international organisations. It also acts as a signpost to good sources of information already on the web. InfoLink can be used by policy makers to access information and locate appropriate organisations who could be consulted on the development of a policy. More information on InfoLink can be found at: http://colin.suffolkcc.gov.uk/YourIntranet/GroupsAndSocieties/SuffolkInfolink.htm

6) Consultation Plan and Guidance documents To find out about SCC policies relating to consultation and guidance on how to conduct an external consultation exercise, please see: http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/CouncilAndDemocracy/Consultations/Listing.htm 7) Staff Networks Suffolk County Council currently supports a number of staff support networks. These networks have two main functions. Firstly to provide a forum for members to discuss

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the issues they share in common and secondly to act as the voice for that group‟s interests and needs within SCC and CSD. This second function means that the Staff Support Networks can be approached to be consulted with on policies that may affect them. There are currently six staff support networks:       Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) Staff Network Christian Fellowship Staff Network Family Carers Staff Network Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transsexual Staff Network Staff Disability Network Women‟s Staff Network

For more information on the staff networks see: http://colin.suffolkcc.gov.uk/StaffNetworks or contact the Diversity Team on 01473 264107

8) Equality Impact Assessments (EIA) An Equality Impact Assessment (EIA) is a way of systematically and thoroughly assessing, and consulting on, the effects that a current or proposed policy, procedure, protocol, service or strategy is likely to have on people who experience discrimination or exclusion relating to race, disability, gender, age, sexual orientation or faith. An Equality Impact Assessment Toolkit has been produced by the Diversity Team that can be found by using the link below. Once complete, directorates should send their Equality Impact Assessments to Sue Ling, preferably by email, for publication on the SCC public website. Publication is a legal requirement of the EIA process. More information on equality impact assessments can be found at: http://colin.suffolkcc.gov.uk/CouncilBusiness/DiversityAndEquality/EqualityImpactAsse ssments.htm

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4. Case studies from other parts of the country
Spelthorne Borough Council project to bring generations together The partners wanted to devise a project that would help older people feel safer with teenagers and develop more positive relationships between the two generations. They were keen to provide an opportunity for each generation to learn something from the other. It was decided that pupils in year eight (12 to 13-year-olds) at Thamesmead School would teach IT skills to older people living in A2 Housing Group accommodation in Ashford and Shepperton. In return, older people would talk about their experiences. The youngsters would use these to create and perform a piece of drama. Older people visited the school one afternoon a week over several weeks. They were taught basics on using the internet, word processing, desktop publishing and using graphics. Each visit included time for everyone to talk together over refreshments and review their learning. To create their drama performance, students spent time talking with older people about their lives when they were teenagers. They then developed their drama accordingly. The drama was performed at the Greeno Day Centre in Shepperton, for:  The elderly people involved in the project  Other day centre users  Local people It contrasted the experiences of a group of modern teenagers getting ready for a night out with those of young people from the past. The key differences highlighted included hot showers versus washing hair with jugs of cold water, and travelling on modern trains compared to open-platform buses. The Warren Resource Centre for Young People Working with young people, many of whom have been or still feel excluded, and those who have been hurt by their life experiences thus far, The Warren has for over twenty years addressed the vital issues of social cohesion. Essentially The Warren has a policy and an ever developing practice of empowerment. Holding a weekly young peoples „parliament‟ called „The Thing‟ is the bedrock of this approach and here young people learn they are intelligent, learn how to argue appropriately, learn how to work together to make decisions and at the same time develop personal and social skills that means that no one in The Warren remains a stranger. From supporting autonomous groups of young people, including women, parents and LGB to The Thing agreeing and then meeting the Hull Veterans of D-day there is a whole range of creative activities and processes that aim to engage and challenge young people to reach their potential both individually and collectively. The Warren no longer feels alone itself as it sees and is involved in a number of partnerships and relationships that seriously aims to see the day when no person or group in Hull feels a stranger. 14

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Links with Age Concern Age Concern play an important role in positive and active work in the community of Hull. Examples of good practice are as follows: Age Concern‟s schools projects have over 50 volunteers who help in primary schools with exam invigilation and assist children with reading and writing difficulties, helping to make young people feel valued and supported. A “sharing culture” project has been set up with people from the Chinese community. Older people buy food then go to a Chinese shop and learn about the ingredients and how to cook a Chinese meal. Everyone shares their experience and samples each other‟s dishes. Age Concern work in Endeavour School to support their citizenship curriculum. Volunteers go into the school to talk about breaking down barriers and ageism. The school have responded by providing food parcels from the children, which have been distributed to older people in need and at Christmas the children decided to provide several hampers for people who “were lonely” at this time of year.

D£von Pound Project D£von Pound is the face of the Devon Community Banking Partnership and provides Outreach Workers to provide financial support for the population of Devon that do not have access to mainstream banking and need some budgeting advice or access to affordable credit. D£von Pound works with a number of partners in Devon, including local credit unions, to deliver this support and to gain access to those in Devon who require help. The project also provides Financial Literacy training to both the adult and youth population in the county.

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5. Summary of key principles, questions and actions
Principle 1: Understanding the needs of individuals, families, neighbourhoods and communities
  Have you considered how your service could impact on individuals, families, neighbourhoods and communities across Suffolk? Have you involved all relevant public and third sector stakeholders in the development of the policy or service?
Tick

ACTIONS TO TAKE:

o Consult actively with key external and internal stakeholders. o Involve a range of user groups from the beginning of the process to ensure the final policy or service is in line with the needs of all potential service users. o Start to develop a system that allows you to identify who your customers are as well as routes to access them.

Principle 2: Recognising, planning for and responding to the changing demography of Suffolk
  Have you used all the available data in the production of your policy or service development? Are you using the same evidence base as other policies within SCC?
Tick

ACTIONS TO TAKE:

o Look at the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment for Suffolk 2008-2011 to see what relevant data already exists. o Involve relevant planning and performance officers and external partners to make sure no key data or information has been excluded o Use the community cohesion indexing profiles to inform your policy or service. o Make sure your policy or service development is based on the same evidence as your service plan.

Principle 3: Recognising that social exclusion can affect anybody
   Are you thinking about ALL groups in the community when developing your policy or service? Does the policy or service take into account that social exclusion can affect anybody? Is there a risk that your policy or service development will unintentionally socially exclude any groups of the community?

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Tick

ACTIONS TO TAKE:

o It is vital that new and existing policies and service developments are Equality Impact Assessed in order to ensure that there is no adverse impact on groups and communities in Suffolk that may then be excluded from the decisions that are made. o Consider whether your policy or service could be developed to have a positive impact on socially excluded groups. o Liaise with the Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion Team if you are concerned your policy or service development may unintentionally exclude any groups.

Principle 4: Understanding the specific barriers to participation faced by individuals and communities
  Do you understand the multi-dimensional nature of social inclusion? Does the policy or service development impact on any other issues?
Tick

ACTIONS TO TAKE:

o Consider any secondary/unintentional impacts your policy or service development may have in terms of creating barriers to participation, and take action to ensure these are removed. o Read the Social Inclusion and Community Cohesion Strategy 2008.

Principle 5: Involving individuals and communities from diverse backgrounds in planning services
   Have you consulted key groups of stakeholders? Is the method of consultation chosen appropriate for the group to be targeted? Are the results of the consultation fed back to those who contributed?
Tick

ACTIONS TO TAKE:

o Refer to the Corporate Consultation and Involvement Strategy and Having My Say guidance (when consulting children) o Where appropriate hold focus groups with socially excluded groups to understand their specific issues in relation to the proposed policy or service development o Make sure you let consultees know what influence, if any, their input had. o Consult through a range of media, e.g. the internet or the press. 17


								
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