Agenda and draft minutes

Health and Social Care Scrutiny Commission
Monday 8 February 2021 7.00 pm

No. Item




Notification of any items of business which the chair deems urgent


Disclosure of Interests and Dispensations





    The commission will interview Cllr Jasmine Ali, Deputy Leader and

    Cabinet Member for Children, Young People & Schools on the social care,

    children’s services and health parts of her portfolio. This is attached and

    the relevant parts are highlighted in yellow.

    Supporting documents:


    The commission interviewed Cllr Jasmine Ali, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Children, Young People & Schools on the social care, children’s services and health parts of her portfolio.


    The following themes were covered:


    ·  Children’s services and youth offending


    ·  Children in care


    ·  Roll out of laptop and broadband to school children


    ·  School meals and enabling access 


    ·  Impact of Covid on children mental health


    ·  Domestic violence and impact on children


    ·  Accessing the NEST and targeting of provision


    ·  £2 million Investment in school’s for mental health - progress, continuity and legacy.


    ·  Prevention of mental ill health





    Follow up information will be provided on:


    ·  NEST – and how information is provided on support for bullying, LGBT+, and body image.


    ·  Enabling access to free school meals with particular reference to Academies.





    Nicholas Okwulu from PEM People - people empowering people,

    will attend and present.


    The chair invited Nicholas Okwulu from PEM People - People Empowering People – to present with help from colleagues John Salmon and Cedric Whitby.


    Nicholas Okwulu emphasised the importance of a safe space, and that young people raise the need for this continuously, for example an adventure playground. He said that this is not something that is easy to deliver. Young people are saying they are being taken to places they do not want to go, or are more vulnerable to street violence or stop and search, when they do not have access to a safe space.


    Skunk cannabis is a big problem and risky, particularly for those with mental health problems.


    Young people are lacking hope and feeling displaced by regeneration.


    John Salmon introduced himself by explaining he had been working in schools and nurseries. He said Mental Health first aiders ought to be a default provision in schools.


    The stop start for Covid is  worrying. New Zealand is having a recovery programme for lockdown and he said this ought to be replicated locally.


    He voiced concerns that parents with special needs children are left at home with little support - maybe a Teaching Assistance in Teams - and the lack support generally for special needs children and families. He asked if all schools and authorities have a SENCO.


    He said he was concerned with a lack of presence online during the pandemic. A virtual service with a network of young people delivering peer support was proposed.


    Cedric Whitby introduced himself as the co-founder of Sunbeam Forum – supporting independent and small black business with a focus on education, advocacy, and creatives. His explained his background is a former deputy head in a PRU.


     Southwark has a richness of services, however he said there is a need to move away from a medical model to a social care model with relationships at the core. Young black men are more likely to encounter mental health difficulties as they face greater challenges but there is reluctance to access services, because of stigma and cultural barriers.  CAMHS is a quite scarce resource that has failed to register with those groups. Young black people more likely to go to community groups with people who look like them. There is good practice in the mental health field but a lack of integration and collaboration and evidence of what is working or not working. An example of this is CAMHS – which Southwark spend a lot on commissioning. He questioned who was  part of the Health and Wellbeing boards and if they are diverse enough.



    The chair then invited questions and there was a discussion with commission members, Pem People and participation from Cllr Jasmine Ali and David Quirke-Thornton, Strategic Director, Children’s & Adults Services.


    The following points were made:


    ·  A commission member said that children from the Latin America community are struggling to get enough time as parents are often overworked and unavailable, which leaves children lacking attention and with vulnerabilities to gangs.


    ·  Southwark has  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.


Work Programme