To consider the report of the Chief Officer, Leeds Health Partnerships, which provides an update on the work to review and replace the Leeds Inclusive Strategy for 2017-2023
The Board considered a report on the recent work to review and replace the Leeds Inclusive Growth Strategy for 2017-2023. A copy of the draft Leeds Inclusive Growth Strategy (IGS) was attached to the report as an appendix.
The Chief Officer, Health Partnerships, reported on a recent meeting with West Yorkshire Combined Authority. He emphasised the need for the IGS to include health and care skills based on the emerging evidence of the close links between skills and education supporting good health; and in the knowledge that the health, care and medical sectors will be one of the fastest growing.
Simon Brereton, LCC Economic Development Programme Leader, presented the Strategy which anticipated Leeds continued economic growth and included proposals to meet that challenge. He posed the question ‘how do we ensure it reaches all parts of the city?’ and highlighted the following issues:
· Leeds’s jobs growth does not reach right across the jobs spectrum. There is growth in degree level qualification jobs but middle sector job numbers are declining; and there is a gap in the market which is traditionally filled with low level skill, administrative, process jobs.
· Two thirds of the working population have not attained a level 4 qualification or above.
· Leeds has a young population that is getting younger; and we need to ensure that they have the qualifications and skills to sustain employment. The ageing population means that we need to cater for those who have been in the job market for a long time.
· The IGS includes ’12 Big Ideas’ to tackle the issues and targets 7 job priority sectors, including the health and medical sector and the aging population.
· The IGS proposed measures to tackle poverty across the city – 150,000 residents live within the 10% most deprived localities in England. Although growth was predicted, a key issue would be how to ensure that growth did not contribute to a widening disparity between rich and poor in the city.
· The IGS anticipated 80,000 new jobs by 2020, with a further 600,000 posts released through the churn of retirement or movement.
· The concentration of low paid jobs in Universities, the health and care and education sectors was noted - despite the work done to achieve the living or minimum wage; and the reliance on these sectors to equip the city for economic growth.
· Future changes to the city infrastructure through the HS2 rail link and anticipated doubling in size of the city centre will impact on the economy; jobs and how we travel to and from the workplace. Poverty and low pay required consideration at the Leeds City Region level. It was noted that people on low pay only travel an average of 1 mile for work – therefore jobs must be created throughout the city, closer to where people on low pay live.
In conclusion, a focus for the meeting was to consider the Board’s influence to challenge to bring about changes to wages and investment in order to promote economic growth and reduce poverty.
The Board’s discussions focussed on the following matters:
Local Procurement and the power to affect change locally in Leeds. Local commissioners could influence and contribute as employers and buyers - making sure low paid staff are supported and paid a living wage; seeking high quality and supporting not for profit care for local communities through partnerships with social enterprise. Future commissioning to consider care delivery differently - to be inclusive and framed around local communities.
The Leeds Health and Wellbeing Strategy – Linking the IGS will encourage partners to use their influence as commissioners and employers to promote apprenticeship opportunities and to support mechanisms which assist people into and back to work.
Children and Young People at the heart of the IGS – Linking the IGS will ensure it looks at achievement and resilience to enable young people to be work ready and able to influence their careers. Support for vulnerable learners and young people with learning difficulties was also highlighted with input welcomed from health partners to support the work already being done by LCC to support these groups. Additionally, the need to work with schools was identified to ensure that a variety of roles in the jobs market are promoted to support aspiration and ensure that young people are given opportunities. Giving children and young people the opportunity to meet adults from a variety of skilled jobs was also suggested to support their future choices. There was also recognition for the need to work closely with employers to match young people with the right opportunity; apprenticeships were not the answer for all communities – this was identified as a proposal which health and care partners could support. Equally, work with parents was key to ensuring a ‘can-do’ attitude and support amongst the whole family.
Links to the Leeds Health & Care Plan – Linking to IGS will ensure there is a coherent vision and will join up some of the big ideas with community cohesion and neighbourhood work.
Consideration of the ‘Social Charter’ – This will provide information on what action is already being taken by Leeds’s Third Sector to support people back into work.
Future Action Planning - It was noted that an IGS Action Plan was being developed, informed by the consultation so far, and would be presented early in 2018. The Action Plan would reference commitments and pledges by partners. The Board noted and welcomed the offer made by Julian Hartley on behalf of Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust to commit to the Inclusive Anchors Programme.
In conclusion, the Board supported the IGS and the development of the Action Plan noting the opportunity for the Board and its partners to influence the wider economy and suggested the following be considered;
- Inclusion of specific targets and priorities that partners could progress (such as reducing poverty, number of people with disabilities in employment) and targets that are place based and ensure inclusivity
- The need to clearly connect to the Leeds Health and Wellbeing Strategy
- The Action Plan to reflect the needs of Leeds most vulnerable communities
a) To note work done to broaden the understanding of health issues in the economic development world and the understanding about the importance of a strong economy in the health and care system.
b) To approve subsequent closer alignment of the Health and Wellbeing and Inclusive Growth strategies
c) To seek to ensure broader health input from both commissioners and providers into the Inclusive Growth Strategy via programmes such as Inclusive Anchors, Leeds Academic Health Partnership and the impending Innovation District and Nexus projects.