Councillors! Test your understanding of #Calderdale Accountable Care System


Calderdale Council Cabinet has resolved that the Council will take more steps towards setting up an Accountable Care System to run local NHS and social care services.

This “Multispeciality Community Provider” is due to be set up in shadow form in April and to go live in June 2019, according to a paper prepared for the 12.2.18 Cabinet meeting.

As the Cabinet resolved this issue in the meeting, Full Council will not debate or vote on it at its Meeting on 11th April.

Papers prepared for the Cabinet seem to have been written, in gobbledygook, by a student of Humpty Dumpty: Continue reading

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Disabled children’s funding cuts consultation on 29th November in Halifax

Like other Calderdale parents of disabled children, Katherine Horner has recently received a letter inviting her to a consultation at the Shay Stadium in Halifax on Wednesday the 29th November, about Calderdale Council’s proposed cuts and changes to  Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP) provision and Disabled Children’s Access To Care (DCATCH) funding for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilty (SEND).

Calderdale Council says it has to make cuts because of government changes to Early Education Funding requirements. Continue reading

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Social prescribing – the good, the bad and the destruction of jobs and the local economy

Social prescribing is part of a process of destroying jobs and the local economy, although  you would never have guessed this at the Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group Governing Body meeting on Thursday 10th August.

The meeting started as usual with a “patient story” that allows the Clinical Commissioning Group to reassure themselves that they have a reason to get out of bed in the morning (a phrase that Clinical Commissioning Group officials used more than once in discussing this patient story).

This time the patient story was a video of patient testimonies to the Staying Well social prescribing scheme to tackle loneliness, which was rolled out in the Upper Calder Valley a few years ago. Continue reading

Hebden Bridge cleaners aim to sweep fracking companies out of WY Pension Fund

Fossil Free West Yorkshire were out in St George’s Square Hebden Bridge on Saturday 17 September. Armed with dusters and mops to clean up the West Yorkshire Pension Fund, they were collecting signatures for the petition to divest the Pension Fund from fossil fuel companies.
Continue reading

£2,500 Calderdale Council grants for flood-hit businesses

Calderdale Council estimates that 1,250 businesses have been affected by the Boxing Day floods. These businesses can apply to the Council for financial support to help them get back on their feet.

Businesses that are eligible for the grant are small to medium enterprises, charities and other third sector organisations.

A grant of up to £2,500 per business is available to help them open up and start trading again after damage caused by the Boxing Day storm. The funding covers costs such as clean up equipment (generators, dehumidifiers, lighting, brushes etc), building and stock security, IT and electricity, temporary accommodation, specialist advice and marketing to keep customers informed. Continue reading

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Calderdale #NHS Detectives – on the case of mental health services privatisation

#NHS Detectives are on the case, collecting evidence to thwart the crime of privatisation.

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Here is our report on the privatisation of some mental health services in Calderdale – some mental health hospital services, and community mental health services for Children and Adolescents, and for Adult Drug and Alcohol Recovery. Continue reading

Confusion over planned bed cuts for Calderdale mental health rehabilitation and recovery patients

Three NHS and social care organisations are planning the future of Calderdale’s mental health rehabilitation and recovery services.

Only two of them have explained their proposals to Councillors on Calderdale Council’s Adults Health and Social Care Scrutiny Panel. They want to cut beds and put patients into their own homes with unclear “support” in the community.

If you are affected by these proposals, please contact Plain Speaker.

Research shows that cutting mental health beds puts patients at increased risk of suicide. Continue reading

Calderdale Council’s futile motion on hospital consultation

Calderdale Council has unanimously agreed a motion that calls on their NHS commissioning partner, Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group, to delay the public consultation on proposals that are more than likely to cut Calderdale Royal Hospital acute and emergency services, until there is evidence that taking community services out of the hospital and transferring them to GP hubs reduces acute and emergency hospital admissions.

The Council’s motion sidesteps the fact that the Care Closer to Home scheme (transferring community services from the hospital to GP hubs) is a big change to Calderdale NHS and we need to be consulted on this too – not just on the hospital cuts.

What kind of patient care and NHS staff working conditions will come with Care Closer to Home? We know the community hubs will employ less qualified staff like physician associates and there will be big reliance on voluntary carers, family and friends. Continue reading

Big support for new petition that asks Calderdale Council to keep public services in public hands

Calderdale 38 Degrees NHS Campaign Group were out on the street in sunny Halifax on Saturday 11 July to launch their Calderdale Public Service Users petition, which is addressed to Calderdale Council.

Hundreds of people signed the petition and the campaigners were kept busy answering questions from passers by.

The Petition calls on Calderdale Council to set up a new procedure for providing public services, so that the Council:

  • is always the preferred provider
  • publicly justifies every decision to privatise services
  • only awards contracts to companies that observe both UK and international Human Rights Law, recognise Trade Unions, pay a living wage and have no history of fraud, tax dodging or endangering public or employees’ safety
  • fully informs the public about all public service contracts, at all stages- from what contracts cover to how the Council manages them
  • favours local companies and requires big contract winners to subcontract to local companies

Continue reading

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Sita’s parent company has successfully sued Argentininan government for putting human rights above its profits

Through its privatised household waste and recycling service, Calderdale Council have been handing over public money to a subsidiary of a global waste and water company that puts profits above the human right to water and other vital utilities.

But Calderdale Council’s contract with Sita runs out shortly and the Council has put a new waste and recycling contract out to tender.

This raises some questions about:

  • the conditions that Calderdale Council requires companies to meet, before they can bid for contracts to run our public services
  • the specifications for the household waste & recycling service – what it collects, when and where.

Plain Speaker suggests that the process of privatising public services should include the online publication of all procurement documents, so the public can see what our money is being spent on, whether the contract specifications meet the public’s needs and whether companies bidding for the contracts are ethically fit to provide public services. Continue reading

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