Martha Parry : Questions to Cabinet : 22nd July 2009


Questions : Martha Parry : on behalf of the Swindon Federation of Community Organisations

  1.  Why is the ERS report not included as an appendix to this report?

  2.  Has the Council in negotiating with DASH considered the provisions of the COMPACT with the
       voluntary sector, with regard to volunteers being 'used' to replace direct services employees?

       How, for instance, in 2.4.12, do you square the volunteers working "alongside library staff to develop        their skills" with the next sentence which says "The proposal would mean reducing the library staff from
       two to single staffing and extending the 'opening hours' ...." ?

       Have you considered how much training and support will be required before you can leave volunteers to
       offer what WAS a professional service in extended hours? Is this not a poorly considered case of "having
       your cake and eating it too"?

 3.    Can the Arts Centre Review, in considering the possibility of co-locating the Old Town Library
        there, please ALSO look specifically at the potential of the adjoining premises at No. 7, Devizes Road,
        with a view to achieving a fuller spectrum community facility to serve the whole of the Southern District of
        Swindon (including Wichelstowe)?

        Would the departments concerned with this Review be willing to meet with the Swindon
        Federation of Community Organisations and Southern Area residents' associations, to
        look at the need/potential of this idea, and to develop it with community input -- with an
        open mind?

        Could the Federation offer a town-wide vehicle for consideration and provision of the balanced town-
        wide service plan which ERS calls for?

Answer :

Martha agreed to receive a response from Cabinet later

Any Comments ?

Councillor Fionuala Foley : Lead Member for Libraries : Mail Councillor Foley

Councillor Rod Bluh, Leader of the Council :
Mail Councillor Bluh

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