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Progress with Complexity: The 2003 Local Reports - Short Reviews of Social Work Services in Scottish Local Authorities

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Short Reviews of Social Work Services in Scottish Local Authorities

logoFalkirk Council

Overview

Falkirk has had to come to terms with the increase in its commuter population and at the same time increased demand for home care services for older people.

In community care services, the Council has made substantial progress in joint working with the health service. This progress is less evident in children's services where agencies need to work together more effectively to improve outcomes for vulnerable children and young people.

The Council's achievements include:

  • providing a community care service to a fairly high rate of older people;
  • providing home care to a high rate of older people; and
  • working with the health service in the initial screening of people with drug problems (this has improved the quality of referrals and helped develop services that are more tailored to individual need).

Falkirk Council needs to take urgent action to improve its performance on standard 3 of the time intervals standards and to make sure that the target of 75% is met. It should also act to secure full-time education and improve the educational attainment of children and young people who are looked after.

The authority should also give priority to:

  • providing assessments for carers;
  • providing more intensive packages of care for older people with the greatest needs;
  • developing integrated mental health services;
  • recruiting and keeping foster carers and making the number of placement moves for children as few as possible; and
  • making sure it has information on and contact with young people who were looked after.

Community Care

Services for older people

The number of older people receiving a service has increased from 6,479 in 2000 to 7,227 in 2002. There was an increase in the number of people in private nursing homes in 2002, but a reduction in the number receiving home care, and a significant reduction in the number receiving care for 20 or more hours a week.

Under a single manager, a dedicated team provides an integrated rapid response service and crisis care to people in the community, and supports the early discharge of people from hospital. Carers have welcomed a single point of contact. Bed spaces are being saved and emergency admissions to respite care are being prevented.

In 2003, the Council is extending its shopping service to all areas. A Care and Repair service is available from the Housing Department. Though there is no waiting list for home care, the service is spread to respond to priorities as they arise, and not everyone can have their assessed needs fully met. A short break bureau arranges respite care services and priority is given to developing new forms of respite for younger people with disabilities. In addition, in tune with the decision to devolve all purchasing budgets to teams, access to respite care and the associated budget has been devolved to the community care team.

All eligible applicants are being funded for free personal care. The Council is committed to auditing applications for Free Personal Care applications and is setting up systems to do so. It is working to achieve equality in access to funding between people in different kinds of establishments.

Services for people with learning disabilities

The number of people receiving a service for learning disabilities increased gradually between 2000 and 2002 (from 353 to 408).

A range of community placements are available for people who have been resettled from the Royal Scottish National Hospital (RSNH). The Council continuously reviews the needs of the minority of people who receive continuing care. Some people who leave hospital are being moved to a purpose-built care home for people with exceptionally high care needs. A New Directions Team based in hospital use people's needs assessments to plan and support them as they leave hospital and to follow them through into the community.

The emphasis is on supporting individuals to use community services and day services where appropriate. The Council is investing Change Funds in a range of services to provide short breaks, as well as in employment services and in developing local area co-ordinators. Health needs are met in a number of ways.

  • a local GP sets aside half a day a week to people with learning disabilities and carries out medical assessments;
  • Community learning disability teams are multi-disciplinary and include health staff; and
  • the Additional Support team has therapists and nursing staff with small caseloads, mainly people with challenging behaviour or high intervention needs.

An integrated learning disability service is being developed, with a joint team manager. People with learning disabilities do not want a separate database.

Services for people with physical disabilities

The number of people receiving a service for physical disabilities increased from 1,579 to 1,931 between 2000 and 2002, and the rate is now high compared with many other authorities.

The Council is introducing Direct Payments and parents can apply. An information pack is available. Even though people can buy services from the Council, it is likely that most will employ their own carers. A support service is in place managed by Falkirk and the District Disability Forum.

The Council has improved systems for equipment and adaptation services. There are no waiting lists for standard equipment and no waiting for equipment once an assessment is complete. However, there is a waiting time for assessment because of staff shortages. This should get better as more assessors have access to equipment through the Single Shared Assessment process, but demand for equipment is rising. Budgets have been devolved to teams, who can make decisions quickly. The Disability Living Centre has a wide range of equipment that people can try out. Social workers and district nurses are trained in assessment and provision and occupational therapists act as consultants.

People with sensory impairment

Planning of services is on a multi-agency basis. Links with people with impairments are through the Sensory Impairment Resource Centre, a user group, deaf-blind communicators working within the Council, specialist agencies such as the Royal National Institute for the Blind and the Royal National Institute for the Deaf, and eye clinics where there is joint working. Services are co-ordinated by a senior social worker. The multi-agency planning group has adapted service standards for local use. A new Forth Valley multi-agency centre is being planned to provide one point of contact for sensory impairment services and social facilities.

Services for people with mental health difficulties

Mental health services are being redeveloped, with three integrated teams linking services across sectors. A timescale for putting these into practice has not yet been agreed. A joint appointment has been made to review day services. Gaps include the lack of services available outside office hours (when 50% admissions to acute wards take place). A day service network has been launched. A Clubhouse model has been running for three years with Caledonian Clubhouse - a joint project with a work ordered day and employment schemes. Joint working is part of the Mental Health Framework Forth Valley Plan.

Risk assessment protocols are in place for forensic services. Social work has a specific remit for forensic services including learning disability and addiction. Falkirk is one of 3 national Integrated Care Pathway pilots with the social work unit at Carstairs. Locally agreed protocols are in place for sex offenders and include notification of councillors.

Tackling substance misuse

Statistics show that 62 people receive a service, but these are thought to under-estimate the number of people receiving services.

Forth Valley Substance Action Team has the overview in tackling substance misuse. It involves the police, three councils, Forth Valley NHS, acute hospitals, prison staff and carers. The Falkirk Forum works with local communities.

The number of access points to services is increasing. More people are coming to Signpost Forth Valley as their first point of contact. Everyone is seen and referred on to clinical and other services, as necessary. As a result of this screening, the community addictions service is dealing with fewer people but those more in need of the service. Services are being tailored more to individual need.

People with HIV and Aids still need community care . A dedicated harm-reduction service covers HIV and hepatitis, which is a bigger problem.

The Council prefers to use community services rather than residential rehabilitation services. If the community alcohol and drug service assessment shows a residential service is needed, this will be jointly funded, with throughcare and return plans. A home-based detoxification service shares a care programme with Falkirk Royal Infirmary, but the two beds available are only used sparingly.

As the main service for drugs and alcohol for children and young people, Connect offers a range of services from information to intensive support. It is a multi-agency, multi-disciplinary service involving social work, community education, a senior practice nurse, the voluntary sector and volunteers.

90% of known women offenders are drug misusers and of these 90% are single parents. Extra resources are devoted to work with families and two family-support groups focus on rehabilitation and preventing children being accommodated.

The Forth Valley fast-track assessment and treatment service for drug misusing offenders on probation has been expanded. Of the 54 cases in 2003 (38 men and 19 women), 51% are in Falkirk. Drug-using offenders are linked to a wider range of services through the substance action team. An arrest referral scheme is being introduced in 2003.

Joining up community care services with health

Progress in improved joint working is measured through the Joint Performance Information and Assessment Framework (JPIAF), which has been agreed by SWSI, Audit Scotland and NHS Scotland. Recent evaluation of the partnership's progress in the 5 areas of joint management, joint governance, human resources, joint resourcing and single shared assessment suggest that the joint arrangements are well progressed and overall, satisfactory. The local partners were recommended to progress:

  • developing proposals for joint or single operational management arrangements for older people's services and implementing (as indicated in the Scottish Executive circulars);
  • supporting the two operational managers in the Council and Primary Care Trust so that they are able to ensure the development and implementation of the joint or single operational management arrangements for older people;
  • reviewing the role of the Member Officer Review Group to promote a greater leadership role;
  • developing details of governance and accountability in relation to the Member Officer Overview Group, the Joint Executive Group and the Joint Management Group, and at all levels of the joint management arrangements;
  • developing and implementing service and clinical governance arrangements and risk assessment for joint services;
  • developing financial management arrangements to address strategic arrangements;
  • developing financial protocols for strategic arrangements;
  • developing an agreed statement of a total service strategic financial envelope for older people's services;
  • developing an agreed statement of a joint resourcing strategic financial envelope for older people's services; and
  • including housing services in planning for the implementation of SSA and including potential assessors in housing in joint training.

On the ground, joint initiatives for older people include:

  • a dementia service (also paid for by Stirling and Clackmannanshire;
  • redesigning two residential homes as units supporting hospital discharge and rehabilitation; and
  • joint planning and decision-making on using resources and redesigning services.

Community learning disability teams are joint, multi-disciplinary teams. A model for integrated mental health services on an area basis is proposed and a joint appointment has been made for reviewing day services. For young people who misuse substances, there is a multi-agency, multi-disciplinary service.

Working with carers

A carers' centre provides information and support services, and involves people in consultation and planning. Respite care is in great demand, particularly for people who have complex needs and for young adults with lesser care needs. Carers' assessments are not separately identified and there is no system for monitoring numbers, which are said to be low because many people are reluctant to be identified formally as carers. The single shared assessment form records the views of carers, and there is now a procedure for making sure that all carers are offered an assessment in their own right.

Children and Young People

Looked after children

Although the rate of children in residential accommodation is fairly low, the rate of children in residential schools is above average (21 young people were in residential schools in 2002). The Council is trying to reduce this number by setting up:

  • a joint group for allocating resources; and
  • the Cluaran Project, a joint programme with Barnardo's to identify and work with children who may otherwise be placed in residential schools.

The effect of these initiatives should be evident by 2004.

The Council's own residential care homes have closed. The one facility for crisis admissions is a one-bedded unit. The Council recognises that these residential resources are not enough at the moment, and two new Council-run residential homes, with a crisis care service attached, should be open next year.

It is a serious concern that just under half of the children and young people who were looked after and accommodated had three or more placements in 2002. This is the third highest rate in Scotland and is due to:

  • a lack of placement choices;
  • a lack of a residential unit;
  • an increase in crisis admissions, for example, where foster carers are not given notice;
  • higher demands on carers; and
  • children and young people being more challenging.

These issues are not unique to Falkirk and do not adequately explain this area of poor performance.

Fostering and adoption

No children are waiting for a foster placement, but:

  • seven children who are accommodated are waiting for a more appropriate placement; and
  • 12 children are waiting for a respite service, including a small number of young people in residential school who currently have no home base.

There are not enough carers to meet local needs and there is a mismatch between resources and children. The Council works with neighbouring authorities, Clackmannanshire and Stirling, to provide foster care and takes children from other areas. They have introduced a three-tier payment system for carers, rewarding skills. The Council currently has 57 carers offering 97 full time placements and one supported landlady offering two full time placements. Five young people are in NCH CAPs placements. The Council finds newspaper advertising the most effective way of recruiting carers.

Working with Clackmannanshire and Stirling on adoption, the Council frequently places children outside Falkirk.

Educational attainment

Fewer than five 16 to 17 year olds stopped being looked after in 2001-2002 in Falkirk so no figures are available on their educational attainment. The Council has made some effort to tackle educational attainment, for example, a social worker co-ordinates the education part of the care plan with the school, and looked after children co-ordinators in schools monitor all children and young people who are looked after and provide extra tuition and study sessions. However, the Council is performing poorly in this area and needs to deal with this urgently.

While all children and young people who are looked after and accommodated have care plans, this is not the case for all looked after children who live at home. Also, 24% of young people who are looked after are not receiving full-time education. This is not acceptable and the Council must deal with it urgently.

Throughcare and aftercare

A recently set up throughcare team takes referrals of young people who are accommodated at age 15. 28 young people aged 15 to 21 receive a service from the team.

The joint housing and social work structure means the Council is well placed to deliver high quality services to young people who have been looked after. However, the information system does not allow full tracking of all young people and at the moment only a small percentage receives a good quality service. A protocol has been developed with the careers service that will allow the Council to access information on the employment histories of people who leave care.

In providing accommodation options, the Council:

  • has a pilot 'supported lodgings' worker; and
  • works with accommodation and support providers, including a YMCA project which provides supported accommodation for up to 15 young people, the Loretto project which provides individual and group living accommodation and the Link Living Tenancy Support service.

The Council has made a bid for a Supporting People project to provide supported accommodation in small two-bedded satellite units for up to six young people returning from residential schools.

Mental health

There is high demand for child and adolescent mental health services and, as a result, the Council has decided to purchase extra services independently and will employ a clinical psychologist to carry out assessments and do direct work with children and young people.

The Hope Project provides services to families where there are issues of substance misuse, but there are not many other resources. In the context of the high number of children and young people in specialist fostering, residential schools and secure placements, the Council and its planning partners should deal with this issue urgently.

Child protection

The number of referrals reduced slightly in 2001-2002 but the rate remains around average compared with other authorities. The number of children subject to a case conference and the number of registrations reduced significantly, and rates are now very low compared with other authorities. In 2002-2003, there were 218 referrals, 72 case conferences and 45 registrations, so the rate of children subject to a case conference and the rate of registrations have increased. There are proportionately more registrations for neglect and to a lesser extent for emotional abuse. Of 64 children currently on the register, 34 are registered for neglect and in a small number of cases neglect is a secondary concern. The cases largely relate to substance misuse and mental health problems.

The Council has put a range of child protection initiatives in place, some following the Child Protection Review. These include

  • a database of missing children;
  • a review of Child Protection Committee procedures;
  • changes in practice such as an increasing number of pre-birth conferences and referrals from midwives, and child and adolescent mental health services;
  • child protection staff in schools;
  • joint training for social workers in children and family and criminal justice;
  • appointing a Child Protection Nurse Advisor, which has meant that health visitors now receive more training and are better at alerting social work to problems; and
  • a review of the format of reports requested from GPs to deal with the problems that GPs face in relation to sharing information and contributing to child protection.

Children with disabilities

A dedicated children and disability team carries out assessments and provides services. The number of staff in the team has increased and by 2004 will include a team manager, a senior worker, three social workers, an access worker, a speech and language therapist, a playscheme co-ordinator, paediatric occupational therapists and a respite social worker.

The Council has expanded services in response to increased demand, especially the playscheme and out-of-school care. By early 2003, the team was providing services for 105 children with a disability.

  • 27 were receiving overnight short breaks.
  • 12 went to the teenage youth club.
  • 16 went to a teenage activity group.
  • 17 went to an after-school club.
  • fewer than five got one-to-one befriending.

After consulting carers, the Council extended the summer playscheme to the Easter and October holidays. Playscheme entitlement increased to 30 hours and 150 children aged three to 18 attended in 2002. Pre-school sessions for three to five year olds were introduced for the first time in 2002.

Respite and short break services do not meet demand. 37 children are waiting for residential overnight short breaks, a small number for the teenage youth club and for the teenage activity groups, fewer than five for after-school clubs and 13 for befriending. There is also a waiting list for overnight short breaks for family-based respite.

Social workers for children and families carry out all future needs assessments. The disability team go to the assessment when they know the child.

The Council is testing out a scheme for a single assessment format with health. A resource allocation group (health, social work and the voluntary sector) assesses the care placement needs of children with disabilities but there is not yet a joint budget. There is joint funding for respite, place by place.

Working of children's hearings

When a case conference was held, all referrals to the Reporter were made within five working days in 2001-2002 (standard 2).

Only 35% of reports were submitted within 20 working days of the date of request (standard 3). 57% of late reports were submitted within 25 working days. Reasons given for this low level of performance were staff vacancies and case priorities.

All supervision requirements with no condition of residence are given effect within 15 working days of date of issue by the children's hearing (standard 15). The worker who completes the report attends the hearing, to make sure of continuity and speed.

A social work liaison officer post helps to provide a high quality service and to avoid unnecessary delay.

Youth justice

The multi-disciplinary youth justice team uses the YLS assessment tool. RA 4 and AIM are used to measure risk of harm.

The Freagarrach Project runs a programme for 12 to 16 year olds or for 16 to 18 year olds who have had five episodes of offending in the last 12 months which have resulted in police charges. The project has had successful outcomes - 63% of 12 to 16 year olds and 76% of 16 to 18 year olds who attended the programme did not re-offend.

Service criteria for the Connect programme have been revised to 12 to 18 year olds experiencing offending or substance misuse. Social work, health, community education and voluntary staff are involved in the programmes. Following assessment, individual and groupwork programmes are provided which are flexible and tailored to individual needs. Medical treatment is provided to high-risk drug users.

The relationship between Connect and Freagarrach has been developed, and Freagarrach work with high risk and persistent offenders, and Connect work with low-risk to high-risk offenders (and also with adolescent sex offenders). There is a joint referral system.

Criminal Justice

Structure

Clackmannanshire, Falkirk and Stirling operate as a partnership for delivery of criminal justice social work services. Responsibility for the strategic planning and monitoring of services across the Forth Valley partnership lies with a strategic management group which meets on a quarterly basis. An operational management group meets on a two monthly basis.

Workload

Demand for core services has risen across the partnership over the past year, with social enquiry reports increasing by 19%, probation orders by 12% and community service orders by 31%. While all constituent authorities have experienced an increase, there are variations. Clackmannanshire has seen an increase of 49% in social enquiry reports, and 110% in probation orders, while Falkirk has seen community service orders rise by 42%. This reflects a general upward trend over recent years. Staff have been placed under increasing pressure as a result. Nevertheless, the three authorities have performed well in relation to prompt submission of social enquiry reports.

Effective practice

The grouping uses differing tools to assess the risk and needs presented by the offender. Falkirk and Clackmannanshire make use of the Scottish Executive's risk assessment framework while Stirling use the tool, LSI-R. The partnership has yet to consider the use of a consistent framework across the authorities. Similarly, varied structured offence-focused programmes are delivered in each authority. This includes a recently developed programme for those convicted of racially motivated offences. A review of the first completed programme is currently being undertaken and it is hoped that a second run of the programme will commence in the autumn. Stirling operates groupwork based on the Constructs programme. Clackmannanshire concentrates on individual work though groupwork provision will be considered next year, possibly in partnership with Stirling. Falkirk provides a combination of individual work and groupwork. The Grouping works closely in partnership with SACRO. While these developments are encouraging, there is still evidently some way to go in developing consistent services across the partnership.

The grouping's Fast Track Assessment and Treatment project continues to offer a, now extended, service to drug misusing offenders. Referrals, orders and the conversion rate have remained high. Analysis of assessments, and compliance and completion rates is to be undertaken to evaluate the effectiveness of the Project.

Services to young offenders throughout the partnership continue to be provided through Barnardo's Freaggarroch Project.

Recent developments include services specifically addressing the needs of female offenders. Stirling provides a lifeskills programme while Falkirk has initiated a weekly informal "drop in" session in addition to formal individual sessions. Both Falkirk and Clackmannanshire have established dedicated women offenders community service groups.

Public protection

Across the three authorities, a groupwork programme for perpetrators of domestic abuse continues to be available in partnership with SACRO. Demand and completion rates are high. Services to sex offenders are also delivered in partnership with SACRO. The grouping is one of the pilot areas for the Community Sex Offender Groupwork Programme (C-SOGP) currently being prepared for accreditation. TayPrep 30 is used to assess the risk posed by sex offenders and the grouping also intends to adopt the tool Risk Matrix 2000 to meet the demands of C-SOGP. The Supported Accommodation service also continues to provide accommodation, support and monitoring of high risk offenders in partnership with SACRO and has now been extended across the grouping. A protocol with the police for assessment and management of all high risk offenders is to be developed.

The Criminal Convictions Enquiry Unit, based in the Stirling criminal justice office, and employed by the local authority, continues to provide a service to all Scottish local authority criminal justice services, providing criminal records checks for all offenders subject to court reports. The future of the Unit is time limited, dependant on the development of ISCJIS, the information system being developed for all agencies in the criminal justice system.

Quality assurance

For 2003-2004, the criminal justice management group will focus in greater detail on the demonstration of effectiveness. Monitoring tools have been developed for use across the service, caseload inspections are planned and monitoring and examination of support programmes are ongoing.

Human Resource

Structure of the workforce

Between 2000 and 2002, there were increases of 20 in the number of whole time equivalent fieldwork staff working with both adults and children. There was also an increase of 19 in the number of social worker posts (main grade and first line managers), almost all in adult services.

In the same period, staff vacancies increased significantly across the client groups, except for staff working with offenders. Overall, vacancies amongst field work staff increased by six to 15. Even though there was an increase in the establishment, vacancies stayed the same at 10 whole time equivalent.

Latest figures provided by the Council and not yet confirmed suggest that, between October 2002 and the end of June 2003, vacancy levels have increased significantly, rising from just over 4% to just under 15% of the social work posts, representing an increase from five to 18 staff.

Recruiting personal care staff caused serious problems. The home care review and a shift in working patterns resulted in an increase in establishment. So far, an extra 150 staff are in post but a further 50 are still to be recruited. Other pressures are:

  • the children and families sector and home support staff;
  • age imbalances (even though most of the main-grade social workers are in the 36 to 45 age band, senior managers tend to be in the older age groups and this could create problems when it comes to transferring skills).

In addition, latest absence figures supplied by the Council suggest there may be some issues surrounding mental health and physical problems (muscular and skeletal).

Support for staff

The Council has started putting into practice the recommendations of Supporting Frontline Staff by:

  • developing a stress policy which is part of a wider health at work strategy (a pilot project is developing management skills and promoting better work-life balance);
  • providing on-going training to deal with violence in the workplace (lone workers are being provided with mobile phones);
  • appointing harassment support officers for staff who do not want to discuss problems with direct line managers; and
  • recruiting a workforce development manager.

To develop its commitment towards training and supporting its staff, the Council is introducing a 'single-status' scheme to move staff into a broader-based pay structure which will allow greater flexibility for progression.

Working towards a more highly qualified workforce

An employment development programme and a supervision programme is in place. Other training opportunities include the Scottish Leadership Foundation, and IPF training and the NEBS certificate. In addition:

  • there are 22 active practice teachers within the department, taking Open University students as well as placements within the Tayforth consortium; and
  • the Council feels that flexible working across teams is becoming more difficult. One generic team covering services for children and older people in Bo'ness is providing more flexibility than in other teams.

Preparation for registration

At the time of visit, the Council was considering what exactly would be needed for it to meet registration criteria. The Council has a well-established SVQ programme with staff taking levels 2, 3 and 4.

The Council has distributed copies of the codes to all staff and held workshops in 2002. The Council was also reviewing its policies and procedures to take account of the codes.

Race Equality

1% of the local population are from a minority ethnic group, compared with 2% for Scotland as a whole.

A Race Equality Scheme is supported by a three-year action plan monitored by a corporate Equal Opportunities Group.

The Council consulted ethnic minority groups as part of the development of its Council-wide plan. It has identified 12 community groups for consultation purposes.

At the moment, the Council does not know if any of the 235 children and young people who are looked after are from minority ethnic groups. It is introducing a system for monitoring the ethnic origin of children and young people who are looked after.

Use of Information Communications Technology (ICT)

Social Services Department

The Council provides all professional staff and managers of remote units with computers. Virtually all staff have access to the Intranet and some to the Internet.

Partnerships

Falkirk and its partners have adopted the Information Sharing Protocol from the Forth Valley Modernising Government Funds 1 (MGF1) project. Joint training for over 400 staff in all sectors on single shared assessment has included information sharing. The social work information system (SWIS) is being been adapted to take in health care needs, with a database that compares with the paper system used by community nurses. Until electronic sharing is possible, information on paper from nurses will be put into the social work information system. A secure e-mail link is to be set up for community nurses to input directly to a template.

The Council is a partner with other local authorities and the health service to introduce the Single Shared Assessment which features the sharing of information across partner agencies. At the moment, there is no direct sharing with education, but this is being developed through Falkirk's Children's Commission, initially in relation to children and young people who are looked after.

Background Profile

Population

Of a total population of 145,191, those of working age account for 62%, the same as the figure for Scotland.
The total population is predicted to stay the same to 2016 (compared with a national reduction of 2%), with a 1% reduction of those of working age and 20% increase of those above working age (national figures are a 3% fall and a 17% increase).

Employment

68% of working age people are in work - less than the 74% figure for Scotland.
Compared with the whole of Scotland, there is a higher percentage of jobs in manufacturing, and a lower percentage in finance and business.

Unemployment

Local unemployment is 3.9% (May 2003), fractionally higher than 3.8% for Scotland.
Unemployment reduced by 9% over the last year, compared with 2% in Scotland.
41% of the unemployed have been so for six months or more, compared with 43 % nationally

Other features

The teenage pregnancy rate is 43.7 for every 1000 females aged 13-19, close to the Scottish average of 43.3 (2001).
For every 1000 people aged 16 and over, 112 Housing Benefit claims were made, matching the national rate (August 2001).
31 % of households were single-person, compared with 33% for Scotland (2001).
The police recorded 647 crimes for every 10,000 population, compared with 843 for Scotland (2002)
The drug misuse rate is low at 1.4% of 15 to 54 year olds (2001).

The Council covers several medium-size towns (the largest is Falkirk itself) and has a limited rural area. Historically a centre of mining and heavy industry, it now contains a range of light industry and the petro-chemical complex at Grangemouth. New housing development has expanded in recent years to accommodate an increasing commuter population.

In most respects, Falkirk is very close to the national average on a number of indicators, but there are areas of deprivation.

Spend for each person on social work in 2001-2002 was 237, compared with 267 for Scotland.

Expected population change

chart

Community Care

Balance of care - older people (aged 65+)

2000
actual

2000
per 1,000
(Quartile)

2001
actual

2001
per 1,000
(Quartile)

2002
actual

2002
per 1,000
(Quartile)

In residential care homes

258

12(4)

269

12(4)

258

12(4)

In private nursing homes

470

22(3)

459

21(3)

519

24(3)

Receiving home care

1,966

91(2)

1,976

92(1)

1,799

82(1)

Receiving 20+ hours home care per week

62

2.9(2)

69

3.2(1)

42

1.9(3)

In special needs housing

1,770

82.1(3)

2,294

106.4(3)

1,753

78.1(3)


People receiving a community care service

1999-2000
actual

1999-2000
per 1,000
(Quartile)

2000-2001
actual

2000-2001
per 1,000
(Quartile)

2001-2002
actual

2001-2002
per 1,000
(Quartile)

Older people (aged 65+)

6,479

300(1)

6,737

312.5(1)

7,227

335.2(1))

For mental health problems/ dementia (aged 18-64)

215

2.4(3)

214

2.4(3)

235

2.6(3)

For physical disabilities (aged 18-64)

1,579

17.4(2)

1,671

18.4(2)

1,931

21.3(1)

For learning disabilities (aged 18-64)

353

3.9(2)

369

4.1(2)

408

4.5(2)

For drug/alcohol abuse problems (aged 18-64)

63

0.7(2)

61

0.7(3)

62

0.7(3)

chart

Expenditure on community care increased gradually in the period 1999-2002.

Children and Young People

Balance of care - Looked after children

1999-2000
actual

1999-2000
per 1,000
(Quartile)

2000-2001
actual

2000-2001
per 1,000
(Quartile)

2001-2002
actual

2001-2002
per 1,000
(Quartile)

At home

84

2.6(4)

75

2.4(4)

81

2.5(4)

With friends/relatives/ other community

33

1.0(2)

33

1.0(2)

28

0.9(2)

With foster carers/ prospective adopters

94

3.0(2)

104

3.3(2)

96

3.0(2)

In residential accommodation

30

0.9(3)

32

1.0(3)

30

0.9(3)

Total

241

7.6(3)

244

7.7(3)

235

7.4(3)


Key performance indicators
Child Protection

1999-2000
actual

1999-2000
per 1,000
(Quartile)

2000-2001
actual

2000-2001
per 1,000
(Quartile)

2001-2002
actual

2001-2002
per 1,000
(Quartile)

Child protection (CP) referrals

259

9.1(2)

240

8.5(2)

218

7.7(2)

Children subject to a CP case conference

49

1.7(4)

86

3(2)

24

0.8(4)

Children placed on CP register

49

1.7(2)

79

2.8(1)

14

0.5(4)


Looked After Children

2001-2002
actual

2001-2002
percentage

Looked after children with 3+ placements

75

49

Educational attainment of Looked After Children (number of 16 & 17 year olds ceasing to be looked after away from home attaining Standard grade Maths & English)

<5

-

chart

Expenditure on children's services has risen very gradually in the period 1999-2002.

Criminal Justice

Key Activities

Clackm'shire

Falkirk

Stirling

2001- 2002

2002- 2003

2001- 2002

2002 -2003

2001- 2002

2002- 2003

Number of social enquiry reports submitted to the courts during the year

496

740

761

840

618

690

Number of community service orders made during the year

91

95

129

183

82

106

Number of probation orders made

67

141

198

226

124

138


Performance

Clackm'shire

Falkirk

Stirling

2000- 2001

2001 -2002

2000- 2001

2001 -2002

2000- 2001

2001 -2002

Proportion of social enquiry reports submitted to the courts by the due date

100.0

100.0

92.4

99.9

99.4

99.2

Average length of community service hours completed

175

248

169

167

156

165

Average number of community service hours completed per week

5.6

6.4

4.1

4.9

3.7

5.7

Human Resources

Fieldwork Staff by client group

WTE
2000
actual

WTE
2000
per 1,000
(Quartile)

WTE
2001
actual

WTE
2001
per 1,000
(Quartile)

WTE
2002
actual

WTE
2002
per 1,000
(Quartile)

with adults

102

0.9(1)

103

0.9(1)

107

0.9(1)

with children

99

3.1(1)

104

3.3(2)

111

3.5(2)

with offenders

30

0.3(3)

31

0.3(3)

30

0.3(3)

Generic workers

16

0.1(4)

16

0.1(4)

19

0.1(4)


Fieldwork Vacancies by client group

WTE
2000
actual

WTE
2000
percent
(Quartile)

WTE
2001
actual

WTE
2001
percent
(Quartile)

WTE
2002
actual

WTE
2002
percent
(Quartile)

with adults

5

4.7(2)

10

8.8(2)

4

3.6(4)

with children

4

3.9(3)

6

5.5(3)

5

4.3(4)

with offenders

0

0.0(4)

2

6.1(3)

6

16.7(1)

Generic workers

0

0.0(4)

0

0(4)

0

0(4)


Social Workers in post

WTE
2000
actual

WTE
2000
per 1,000
(Quartile)

WTE
2001
actual

WTE
2001
per 1,000
(Quartile)

WTE
2002
actual

WTE
2002
per 1,000
(Quartile)

SWs with adults

37

0.3(2)

47

0.4(1)

51

0.5(1)

SWs with children

55

1.7(2)

54

1.7(2)

56

1.8(2)

SWs with offenders

13

0.1(3)

14

0.2(2)

16

0.2(2)

Generic workers

0

0.0(4)

0

0.0(4)

1

0.0(4)

Total

104

0.7(2)

115

0.8(2)

123

0.8(2)


Social Work Vacancies

WTE
2000
Vacancies

WTE
2000
% Vacancies

WTE
2001
Vacancies

WTE
2001
% Vacancies

WTE
2002
Vacancies

WTE
2002
% Vacancies

SWs with adults

1

2.6

7

13.0

2

3.8

SWs with children

4

6.8

6

10.0

3

5.1

SWs with offenders

0

0.0

2

12.5

0

0.0

Generic workers

0

0.0

0

0.0

0

0.0

Total

5

4.6

15

11.5

5

3.9