Taking forward community partnerships in Sutherland
Councillors have today (Tuesday 30 August) shown their support to the new Sutherland Community Partnership which will be launched this autumn and will play a key role in taking forward local planning arrangements.
The Highland Community Planning Partnership Board agreed at their meeting on 30th June to establish 9 local partnerships across the Highlands, including one in Sutherland . These partnerships will provide a focus for local discussion, engagement with communities and identifying priorities for the local area.
Under the terms of the Community Empowerment Act, community planning is to become a shared duty facilitated by Police Scotland, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, NHS Highland and The Highland Council. Along with representation from the Third Sector, community planning will also involve a further 10 partners including SNH, SEPA, the Scottish Sports Council, HITRANS, Skills Development Scotland and Visit Scotland.
The Community Partnership will replace the current District Partnership arrangements and its core remit will be to:
- Develop Local Plans for Children and Adults
- Develop Locality Plans/Community Learning and Development plans focusing on communities facing the greatest level of inequality as a result of socio-economic disadvantage
- Identify local actions and priorities
During today’s Sutherland County Committee members had the chance to discuss progress and reaffirm their commitment to the new arrangements.
Chair Councillor Graham Phillips said: “There are big changes in community planning taking place all over the Highlands. In Sutherland I believe we are fortunate as a very proactive and effective District Partnership has been in place bringing together partners to work together. This gives us a strong starting point to build on.
“The ethos of the new Community Partnership is a more local level approach to decision making, bringing together more partners to focus on issues affecting people who live , work and visit our area. There will be more flexibility for local needs to be taken into account and reflected in decisions taken and all local councillors will have an important role to play. We are all committed to making the new arrangements work and look forward to the new opportunities they will bring as well as closer working with our partners.”