Ahead of tonight’s full council meeting, the Independent Green IW Councillor for Ryde East, Cllr Michael Lilley, shares this news. Ed
At the Isle of Wight Full Council meeting on 18th July 2018, there is now in place the opportunity for elected members to ask public questions to the Leader of the Council and the ruling Conservative Administration.
This right to ask questions at a Full Council Meeting has not be there for the past 12 months, but lobbying by the opposition groups has enabled this new privilege or right to be put in place.
My question is:
“Can the Leader of the Council provide reassurance to the IW Community that it has an overriding strategy to tackle all social indicators that have a detrimental negative effect on residents’ lives as well as a detrimental effect on the uncontrollable statutory aspect of the budget (i.e. reduction of numbers of Island residents falling into statutory services through crisis by having adequate interventions in place to prevent these socially and financially high cost outcomes)?
The IW Council has statutory responsibilities that it has to fund whether this is a child coming into care, a frail elderly person needing 24hr care or a family becoming homeless. This is the uncontrollable aspect of the budget.
In 2018, National Statistics show that in many social indicators that the Isle of Wight has a significant higher rate per proportion of the population than the national average, for example within numbers of children offending, coming into care, marital breakdown, numbers of middle aged men committing suicide, and the reality that by 2026, 31% of the IW population being aged over 65 (which if Island was a Country would make IW having the oldest community in the World).
These statistical indicators show a high risk vulnerability to the Council in being able to stabilise future budgets without having very strong mitigation interventions to reduce numbers of Island residents who become reliant on statutory services and funding.”
Seeing more and more families in crisis
This question is important as I find as a Councillor in Ryde that I see more and more families in crisis and see how quick a family can go from functioning well to one that has all the children on free school meals, parents in breakdown and homeless due to unforeseen circumstances such as relationship breakdown, loss of a job, and other normal life ups and downs.
It is the downs that seem to be on the up.
I want to see more open discussion about the issue of crisis, poverty and how we can as a community come together to tackle the problems that simply push people over the edge.
Need more preventative interventions
We need more preventative interventions and support people earlier enough, so that they avoid total crash.
As the Council has statutory responsibility to provide the final safety net with this being the most costly outcome, prevention has to be the way forward.