08 December 2015

A new trust to deliver all children’s services in the county as part of Northamptonshire County Council’s transformation of public services is a key proposal published today.

The creation of a trust for children’s services is part of the county council’s transition to a Next Generation Model with stand-alone enterprises being established to deliver services previously delivered directly by the council itself.

The proposal is part of the county council’s draft council plan, announced today, and through the creation of a more stable in-house workforce and therefore one less reliant on expensive agency staff it is believed the creation of the trust could save the council £9million in 2016/17.

The draft budget also proposes a £5million spending increase in the total children and families budget and we continue to focus on the most vulnerable in our county.

Establishing a trust will enable permanent staff to benefit from improved terms and conditions and see a greater focus on reducing the current reliance on agency staff, which currently costs the council £22million in children’s services.

This will create a more stable workforce in children’s services, meaning greater continuity of care for families, and is in line with the authority’s improvement programme.

Cllr Heather Smith, county council deputy leader and cabinet member for children’s service, said: “The creation of a Children’s Trust is the next stage in our improvement programme and will enhance services for children and families across Northamptonshire.

“One of the key benefits of a trust model is the flexibility it can give in relation to the workforce. We will be able to significantly improve the terms and conditions for our permanent staff in order to reduce our dependence on costly agency workers. As a result the Trust model will also be more affordable and deliver a more stable workforce.

“This is an exciting development in our children’s services improvement journey and will help us to manage the increased demand for services while improving outcomes for all children and young people in Northamptonshire.”

The trust should be in place by September 2016.