Headlines: April 13th, 2000

Three further reports from the 18 Policy Action Teams (PATs) set up to respond to the challenge of renewing Britain’s rundown communities have been published.They add some of the last pieces of the jigsaw to shape both the forthcoming urban and rural white papers later this summer, and the spending review.

‘Joining It Up Locally’ looks at the whole issue of joined up services – how poor educational achievement, unemployment and poor health are connected – and how the solutions will need to be.

Recommendations include a recognition that central Government may have to loosen some financial strings attached to certain types of grants to allow local flexibility to achieve results.

‘Better Information’ argues that current statistical information isn’t up to the job of targeting pockets of deprivation. Rising standards generally have often hidden a picture of worsening problems in some areas.

It argues that the Office of National Statistics should put together and disseminate neighbourhood level statistics and also conduct attitudinal surveys.

‘Better Neighbourhood Management’ looks at the poor state of repair of many poorer neighbourhoods and recommends one point of contact – one person – for residents to contact when they want action or repairs.

All three PAT reports are available on the web at: http://www.cabinet-office.gov.uk/seu/index.htm