Swindon Council social services department has
been warned in a joint review report that it will need to
significantly change because it is only serving some service users
joint review by the Audit Commission and the Department of Health
found that the council’s prospects for improvement were poor
without concerted change. This comes just weeks after Swindon
Council was awarded a zero star rating in the first round of the
new performance rating system (News, page 6, 30 May).
Although the authority has high
aspirations and ambition, the joint review report says it has not
yet “got to grips with some key aspects of corporate management and
with the complexity of social care issues”.
report says Swindon’s corporate objectives are not well defined,
and there is a lack of vision for social services and no overall
leadership and direction within the council.
“Adults’ services have suffered
because of lack of focus on the core arrangement for assessing
people’s needs and organising services to help,” it
Mead, assistant review director, said: “Strong leadership will be
needed to formulate and drive through improvements at Swindon
social services. Councillors and officers need to understand their
roles and take their respective responsibility for putting things