The council has a legal duty to assess the needs of vulnerable adults in the city and either directly provide them with services or commission care and support from other providers, in line with nationally set eligibility criteria.
The vast majority of adult social care is commissioned from the independent and voluntary sector. The council has a legal duty to monitor the quality of those services.
Around 15,000 people receive care each year, including:
Reablement services are important in helping with hospital discharges and preventing admissions to hospital. They give people who are frail, disabled, or recovering from illness the support they need to regain confidence and skills to keep them safe and independent at home.
We work closely with the NHS and our partners in health, as well as independent providers of care.
We employ 350 social work staff to do assessments and review services for vulnerable adults. This includes older people; people with a learning disability or mental health issue; people with a physical disability and/or sensory impairment and people with alcohol/substance misuse problems.
Social workers and community assessors assess people’s needs and develop care plans tailored to each individual. They commission services from either the council’s in-house services or the independent/voluntary sector.
They also have a duty to safeguard vulnerable adults and monitor and review care packages to ensure they are fit for purpose and meet people’s needs.
The budget also covers Careline, a contact centre which is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, for all social care enquiries and referrals relating to children, adults and homeless people.
This service provides social care services to children and young people in Liverpool. The service works with schools and other children’s services to meet the needs of children in care or those getting support. It takes action to protect children - in agreement with parents and carers where possible – and supports the work of the Liverpool Safeguarding Children Board. It recruits and supports foster carers and adoptive parents. It also provides and commissions services for children and families and encourages young people to become involved in making decisions about services via an active participation group. It includes the Family Support Service which helps families in crisis and enables parents to have contact with their children where they are living apart.
Social workers in the adoption service have knowledge and skills in the recruitment, training and assessment process in relation to prospective adopters. They need to comply with National Adoption Standards and have an awareness of national trends and current legal judgments.
Providing a range of the best possible services to ensure children are supported effectively in school and early years settings (e.g. Children’s Centres and nurseries).
Works to ensure appropriate education services are in place for children in care and other vulnerable young people. Support children with special educational needs (SEN) and disabilities to support them to attend school and make appropriate academic / development progress. Support for pupils with challenging behaviour in order to reduce school exclusions and provide alternative placements for those children.
Oversees demand for school places and ensures that admission policies are developed and implemented in line with the Admissions Code.
We manage 800 hectares of parks, recreation grounds, playgrounds, and open spaces across the city in partnership through the Council wholly owned company Liverpool Streetscene Services Ltd.
Together they provide important space for leisure and relaxation, host sporting and cultural events and offer playgrounds and other facilities like fitness trails, which encourage people to exercise and improve their health and wellbeing. The parks host over 250 events per year from small community events, park runs to major festivals.
Two of our parks, Sefton and Stanley, hold ‘green flags’ – a national award for well managed parks.
This department is made up of Environmental Health, Licensing, Trading Standards, CCTV/City Watch, Port Health and Emergency Planning. Many of these services are statutory, meaning we have to provide them by law.
Environment Health covers Health and Safety at Work, Food Safety, Pollution Control, Private Housing Disrepair and Pest Control. Every year we receive 10,000 requests for help to do with housing issues, food hygiene and noisy neighbours and 12,000 calls to Pest Control. We are responsible for inspecting around 4,000 food businesses.
Trading Standards investigate fraud and deception against consumers and businesses. They also investigate complaints about unfair trading.
Licensing makes sure licensing standards are met in clubs, pubs, restaurants, private hire taxis and street trading.
City Watch operate over 379 CCTV cameras, monitoring public spaces and helping the police keep the city’s residents safe.
Our 13 officers support councillors and local communities to create clean, safe and well managed communities.
They resolve issues like littering, dog fouling, fly-tipping and passageway dumping, waste management issues etc, involving other council services and external partners, like the Police, where necessary.
Last year, Street scene received 10,000 reports about fly-tipping and removed over 10,000 tonnes of fly-tipped waste, had over 5,000 reports of passageway dumping and received over 1,000 complaints about litter and street cleaning.
The budget for this area covers bin collections and recycling, street and passageway cleaning, graffiti, weed and fly-posting removal.
We collect wheelie bins from over 160,000 households every fortnight, and a further 50,000 households receive a black sack or communal bin collection every week.
We currently recycle or compost around 30% of the city’s waste. Waste prevention, re-use and recycling locally reduces cost of sending the city’s remaining waste by train to an energy from waste plant in the NE of England.
The Council delivers these services through its wholly owned company Liverpool Streetscene Services Ltd that also provides street cleaning, fly tipping removal, grounds and tree maintenance services.
Finally, the free to use ‘Bulky Bobs’ household waste collection service carries out around 52,000 collections every year.
The council offers affordable and accessible facilities for sport and exercise though its 10 Lifestyles centres and swimming pools.
Our centres have 16,000 members and receive on average three million visits per year.
The service also delivers sports development and major sports events. We work closely with partners in health, local community organisations, voluntary sports clubs, schools and a wide range of other stakeholders and partners.
Getting Liverpool residents active and involved in exercise is important. The impact of physical inactivity costs the NHS in Liverpool around £10 million. Our ambition is to make Liverpool the most active city by 2021.
Liverpool has 19 libraries, an Archive Service and a home delivery service for disabled and isolated customers. The service aims to promote reading and learning and give access to information and computers.
Joining a library is free. The council offers a wide range of online services through its Read Liverpool e-books and e-magazine service, which are free to members.
To save money, we have co-located two of our libraries within our One Stop Shops, while five of our community libraries are run independently of the council, four by community organisations and one by Merseycare NHS Trust.
Last year, over 1,000,000 books were borrowed from our libraries by over 195,000 customers. We also hosted 455,000 computer sessions, 1.6 million visits and 55,000 downloads of our ‘e-books’.
By law, the council has to provide a ‘comprehensive and efficient’ library service.
The council works with partners to build safer and stronger communities by preventing and reducing crime and anti-social behaviour, and supporting local communities and the victims of crime.
We have a statutory duty (required by law) to lead on bringing public sector agencies like the police, fire service, health and voluntary organisations together in this work. This partnership is called ‘Citysafe’.
We also provide grants to community organisations to help bring communities together.
In 2018/19, through the partnership, over 1000 victims of domestic violence were supported; over 1000 complaints on anti-social behaviour and hate crime were dealt with and over 30 organisations were funded to provide services and advice in their local communities, benefitting over 100,000 people.
We are responsible, for maintaining 1,442.2 km of carriageway, 2864.3km of footways, 249 bridges and structures, 64,974 gullies, 57,858 street lights, 482 traffic signals, as well as bridges, footways, verges, traffic signs and bollards.
We carry out emergency repairs of potholes and broken paving, grit 401 km of roads, prune trees, repair broken lights and keep roads draining well.
The budget covers road safety education and training and School Crossing Patrols, promoting cycling/walking and dealing with issues such as rat running, speeding and parking problems. We also manage the highway network through management and maintenance of the traffic signal network.
We give advice to developers and planning colleagues to ensure new developments take the impact on roads into account. We monitor and check work by others (developers, utility companies etc) on the roads to ensure it is done safely and with the minimum of disruption.
We are successful at drawing in substantial external funding from many different sources, to improve our roads and create a future highway network which the demands of the future.
Planning & Building Control
Planning and Building Control regulate the development and use of land. Both services are statutory functions that the City Council must carry out.
The Local Planning Authority considers planning applications for land use, new buildings and extensions/alterations. We also deal with Planning Appeals. The Planning Enforcement Team deal with unauthorised development and take action to tackle breaches of planning legislation.
Last year, we dealt with a record number of planning applications - over 3,500. Making decisions on applications effectively and efficiently is important, as delays could affect the confidence of businesses and investors and lead them to build/invest elsewhere.
The Local Planning Authority is also responsibility for setting the vision of the whole City for the next 15 years through the Local Plan.
Our Building Control team gives advice/decisions on Building Regulation applications. Public safety is an important part of the job, by ensuring new buildings or alterations to existing buildings are safely constructed in accordance with national Building Regulation standards. As part of this process the building work is inspected to ensure it is built to the correct standards. The team also ensure public safety at regulated sports stadia i.e. Liverpool/Everton football clubs within the city. The team also responds to reports of dangerous buildings/open to access premises both during/outside normal office hours and carry out work using emergency contractors to make them safe or secure against unauthorized entry so the general public are not hurt. As the city grows, so does the demand for our services.
We also protect historic buildings and conservation areas. The number of important historical buildings ‘at risk’ is at a 25 year low.
The council does a lot of work to support tourism - a key economic sector which generates £4 billion and supports over 50,000 jobs in the city.
Our two Tourist Information Centre’s have dealt with 200,000 customers so far this year.
While the council-owned Liverpool Cruise Terminal welcomed 86 cruise ships and 165,000 passengers and crew, worth around £11 million to the city’s economy. We are expecting even more visitors and cruise calls next year.
In 2018, events in Liverpool welcomed over 2.2 million people to the city, generating more than £85 million into the local economy.
As well as running our own events, we fund and support Liverpool’s major cultural organisations, theatres, festivals and community arts. This year we distributed £2.9 million to over 30 cultural organisations, safeguarding 1200 jobs and bringing a further £35 million into the city’s economy.
Our small Film Office provides a service to TV and film companies. So far this year they have supported 250 film and TV projects, resulting in over 800 days of filming in the city and bringing £11 million of investment to the local economy. Companies have to pay for things like street cleaning and road closures, which made us over £460,000 last year.
The budget for this area also covers Liverpool Town Hall and St George’s Hall. We hold weddings and private events in both halls to generate income. St George’s Hall and Town Hall have had almost 1 million visitors through their doors this year, and have generated £1.6 million income.
Culture Liverpool has been successful in attracting commercial events to the City. These events together with our own produced events, like the Liverpool International Music Festival and the International Mersey River Festival, combined with the city’s vibrant cultural scene have propelled Liverpool to fourth most visited city in the UK by overseas visitors. The work delivered by the team supports destination positioning and economic growth.
The recent Investors Perception Study evidenced cultural vibrancy as one of the top factors for companies looking to invest in Liverpool, clearly demonstrating its importance and direct translation to economic growth.
Liverpool needs at least around 1,500 new houses every year, to keep up with demand and ensure there are enough houses for people to live in. Without them, rents and house prices will rise and homelessness could increase.
Although the council no longer provides council houses, we work with housing partnerships to provide opportunities for new homes to be built. This way, over 5,000 new homes have been built over the past five years.
We also bring empty properties back into use and stop empty properties causing problems. For instance, over the last five years, we have brought over 3,000 empty homes back into use.
We help people to look after their homes, make them more energy efficient and avoid fuel poverty (when people cannot afford to heat their homes). Around 31,000 households are currently in fuel poverty and, as energy prices continue to rise faster than wages, these numbers are likely to go up further.
We provide adaptations to allow disabled people to live independently. We currently provide funding for around 460 adaptations per year, but as the population continues to age, demand will rise.
Finally, we provide access to housing for people in need or at risk of homelessness. There has been a 26% increase in the number of people at risk of homelessness asking for our help in the last five years. With the implementation of the Government’s benefits cap, this number is likely to continue rising and this will place more pressure on the council’s budget.
Investment & Development
The council helps the city’s economy to grow by offering a range of services which promote investment and support major projects in the city.
We work hard to:
Last year, we supported 250 major projects, unlocking £10.5 billion of investment, and creating the potential for 20,000 new jobs.
Provides legal advice and support to the council, officers and elected members and commissions external advice when required, monitoring the quality and cost of such advice. Delivers an audit service to the City Council ensuring full compliance and also handles risk and insurance on behalf of the organisation.
Ensures compliance with all Freedom of Information and Data Protection legislation.
The service is responsible for ensuring that all elections are run effectively and in line with the law, that an up-to-date and accurate register is maintained and published so anybody entitled to vote can do so.
The service provides direct support to elected members in their various roles and oversees the decision-making process including council, cabinet, planning and licensing committees. It is responsible for registering births, deaths and marriages and the conduct of Citizenship ceremonies and provides support to HM Coroner for Liverpool and Wirral.
Responsible for effectively managing the council’s financial resources, including cash flow, borrowing and investment decision-making, managing risks, financial planning, preparing statutory accounts and financial returns. The service provides advice to managers, officers and elected members; negotiates contracts for goods, services and work; leads on the council’s procurement approach and processes council payments. It also provides a full payroll and pension service to employees, external customers, statutory bodies, third parties and pension fund administering authorities.
Responsible for collection and recovery of local taxation i.e. Council Tax and Business Rates; recovery of historic debts associated with the Community charge and former tenant arrears; recovery of sundry debt including all debts due to the council which fail to be paid following initial invoices; administering Housing Benefit, Council Tax Support, Discretionary Housing Payments, the Liverpool Citizens Support Scheme, Free School Meals, social care financial assessments and Direct Payments to customers managing their own care provision budgets. The service also provides advice on benefits maximisation and financial assessments.
Also responsible for effectively managing the council’s Information and Communication Technology (ICT) including all aspects of hardware, software applications, data security and operating systems including its interfaces with the public.
In the current economic climate, it is vital to ensure that the limited resources we have are managed effectively to ensure front-line services are provided in the best possible way.