Agenda and minutes

Children and Education Policy and Accountability Committee
Monday, 26th November, 2018 7.00 pm

Venue: Small Hall - Hammersmith Town Hall. View directions

Contact: David Abbott  Email: david.abbott@lbhf.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 127 KB

To approve the minutes of the previous meeting held on 3 September 2018.

Minutes:

RESOLVED

The minutes of the previous meeting, held on 3 September 2018, were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

2.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Lucy Richardson, Nandini Ganesh, and Matt Jenkins.

3.

Declarations of Interest

If a Councillor has a disclosable pecuniary interest in a particular item, whether or not it is entered in the Authority’s register of interests, or any other significant interest which they consider should be declared in the public interest, they should declare the existence and, unless it is a sensitive interest as defined in the Member Code of Conduct, the nature of the interest at the commencement of the consideration of that item or as soon as it becomes apparent.

 

At meetings where members of the public are allowed to be in attendance and speak, any Councillor with a disclosable pecuniary interest or other significant interest may also make representations, give evidence or answer questions about the matter.  The Councillor must then withdraw immediately from the meeting before the matter is discussed and any vote taken.

 

Where Members of the public are not allowed to be in attendance and speak, then the Councillor with a disclosable pecuniary interest should withdraw from the meeting whilst the matter is under consideration. Councillors who have declared other significant interests should also withdraw from the meeting if they consider their continued participation in the matter would not be reasonable in the circumstances and may give rise to a perception of a conflict of interest.

 

Councillors are not obliged to withdraw from the meeting where a dispensation to that effect has been obtained from the Audit, Pensions and Standards Committee. 

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

4.

Knife Crime and Youth Violence - Discussion Item

This item will be an open discussion between members of the community, council officers, and other stakeholders to help understand the local issues and develop solutions.

Minutes:

The Chair introduced the item and asked officers to give a short introduction to give context to the discussion.

 

Alison Sabaroche (Head of Youth Offending Services) gave an overview of the key issues in Hammersmith & Fulham:

·         The borough was ranked fairly low for serious youth violence (24) and the percentage rise is the lowest in London.

·         The 87s were the most concerning gang - based in Shepherd Bush on the White City estate.

·         The majority of violence was between the 87s and Ladbroke Grove gangs clashing.

·         H&F has a knife crime action plan and an 'ending gang violence' strategy.

 

Members asked if there was a breakdown of when these events took place. Alison said there was a peak after school. She added that the British Medical Journal had suggested staggering school times to mitigate this.

 

Members asked for more information on restorative interventions. Officers said it was a new approach involving mediation between victims and offenders. Officers were beginning to contact businesses, charities, local churches and mosques, and other local organisations to raise awareness about the process. They were considering some form of reparation – the goal was to make young people who committed crimes aware of the consequences of their behaviour. It was noted that Hackney have done good work in this area, including introducing safe spaces for young people to go if they are being attacked or under threat.

 

A resident asked what 'youth disposals' meant in this context. Officers explained that this was a court term – when a case was 'disposed' it was finished and removed from a court's docket. ‘Disposal’ might mean a caution, community order, custodial sentence etc.

 

The Chair asked representatives from the boroughs estates for their key concerns. They made the following points:

·         Anti-social behaviour was more of an issue than knife crime.

·         The Safer Neighbourhoods Team were good and carried out regular knife sweeps.

·         Estates were worried about crime coming into the estates - some were looking to have security gates installed to protect their residents.

·         There was crime on some estates but it wasn't violent. Residents were more aware of drug dealing etc.

 

Jan Parnell (Assistant Director of Education) noted that headteachers in H&F wanted to do some work collectively around anti-social behaviour as they felt it was increasing. She added that in recent years a lot of support roles (PSHE support, mentors etc.) had been removed from schools due to budget pressures and the impact was being felt.

 

Representatives from local secondary schools noted a recent report on mental health that said 13 percent of children aged between two and four years old had mental health problems. These issues started early and needed to be addressed early.

 

One of the co-optees said as a parent of a teenage son they worried about his safety in the evenings. They asked what should parents be looking for – how can parents reduce the risks for their children? The Chair asked if there was provision to support parents? Officers  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

5.

Dates of Future Meetings

Future meetings of the Committee will be held on:

·         28 January 2019 at 7pm in the Town Hall

·         25 March 2019 at 7pm in the Town Hall

Minutes: