Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council House

Contact: Helen Rickman, Democratic Advisor 


No. Item


Declarations of Interest

Councillors will be asked to make any declarations of interest in respect of items on the agenda.

Additional documents:


There were no declarations of interests in accordance with the code of conduct.


Chair's Urgent Business

To receive reports on business which in the opinion of the Chair, should be brought forward for urgent consideration.

Additional documents:


There were no items of Chair’s urgent business.


Call-in: Decision Reference - L15 22/23 - Changes to Contact Centre Services pdf icon PDF 113 KB

The Committee will consider the decision called in by Councillors Haydon, Mrs Aspinall and Coker.

Additional documents:


Councillors Riley and Tofan arrived at 9.35am.


Councillors Haydon, Mrs Aspinall and Coker introduced the reasons for the call-in and highlighted:


a)     Between 1 April to 31 October 2022, 1670 calls were made, of which only 61% were answered;

b)     It could be difficult to complete some Council forms online, such as the Blue Badge Form, meaning those who are not digital excluded or vulnerable, do not wish to use online services;

c)     Not all residents who would need to access services at Central Library would find it easy to get there physically, but furthermore working people would find it harder to get there on the specific day they needed to;

d)     Wait time on the Council Number could be up to an hour long, taking up residents time and money, especially if they had to call from a pay-as-you-go phone;

e)     The data in the report was from the 2011 Census;

f)      Residents were being directed to libraries for support, but most were not open full time, making it harder for residents to access services;

g)     Plymouth was a trauma-informed city and the change policy proposed did not seem in line with this;

h)     They were not satisfied that the list of priorities and non-priorities was correct;

i)      With the number of phone calls unanswered, the Contact Centre should be something that was expanded, not contracted;

j)      Councillors should work collaboratively to improve the lives of residents, and encourage them to access the services they were entitled to, not make it more difficult;

k)     Risks were named in the mitigation measures part of the policy stating that it could lead to isolation of some residents;

l)      Loss of some bus routes and increases in bus fares would make it harder for some residents to get into Central Library.


In response to questions it was highlighted;

m)   An individual who Councillor Haydon had unsuccessfully tried to help get a bus pass, now refuses to try again to apply, following a traumatic visit to St Budeaux Library, which means he will no longer exit his property and travel around the city;

n)     St Budeaux Librarians had explained that post-COVID19, librarian staff were not able to support individuals and the gentleman would need to access an appointment on a Thursday at Central Library;

o)    Some residents would need to walk further to get to a bus stop following the cancelling of some routes, making it harder for less mobile residents of the city to travel to libraries to access services;

p)     Some residents might have had to pay more to travel into the city centre by taxi because a bus route had been removed, a cost some wouldn’t have been able to afford with the Cost of Living Crisis;

q)     Most local libraries had very specific opening hours, making it more difficult for residents to access what they could at their local libraries;

r)     Councillor Haydon and her husband had had difficulty completing a blue badge form online for a family member,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 31.