Archives for May 23rd, 2006

LOCALITY MATTERS – MAKING PARTICIPATION COUNT IN LOCAL POLITICS

Book News, PublicNet: 23 May, 2006

By Vivien Lowndes, Lawrence Pratchett, and Gerry StokerLevels of formal political participation in the UK are generally seen to be in a state of crisis, with turnout in elections declining to historic lows, especially in the most disadvantaged communities. This report suggests that while poverty, inequality, and community strength help shape levels of political participation, they do not determine them. The report compares levels of participation in six different localities and finds that the way institutions work and the way those in charge behave makes a considerable difference to whether people choose to participate.

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COUNCIL AND CHARITY TO BEGIN TELESHOPPING PILOT

Headlines, PublicNet: 23 May, 2006

A council’s Social Services Department has joined forces with the charity Age Concern to organise a trial telephone shopping service that will allow elderly and disabled people to buy groceries from their village shop without leaving their own homes.The three-month trial will be run by Age Concern and Norfolk Social Services. It will begin in July in the north of the county where two hundred people are eligible to take part. If it is successful it will be rolled out across Norfolk by next year and could benefit up to six thousand people

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TOOLKIT AIMS TO GET STAFF INVOLVED IN PUBLIC SERVICE REFORM

Headlines, PublicNet: 23 May, 2006

The TUC and the Government have jointly launched an online toolkit to get people working in the public sector more involved in improving services. The web-based ‘Drive for Change’ is being sponsored by the Public Services Forum. The initiative involved employers and public sector trade unions.’Drive for Change’ has been designed to help managers, union representatives and employees work together to bring about changes public services. The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Hilary Armstrong, who was joined by TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber to launch the kit, said employee engagement was the key to successful public service improvement. “The toolkit will make a real difference to ordinary people by bringing managers, unions and employees together to drive forward positive change in public services,” she said.

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