Barnet UNISON was bitterly disappointed to read that Barnet Council is now back tracking on a decision agreed at a Special Policy and Resources Committee on 19 July 2018.
The decision was to review the council’s partnership with Capita, and authorise the Chief Executive to develop a Full Business Case for all of the following Options:
- Keep both Capita contracts as they are now.
- Bring some Capita services back in-house from both contracts.
- Bring all the services back in-house from both contracts.
“all three options should be fully tested, consulted on and considered in a Full Business Case before a final decision was made”
Barnet Council has now announced that only these services will be brought back in-house:
“It is intended that the report will recommend that Finance and Accounting (excluding transactional services provided from the Darlington shared service centre) and Strategic HR be transferred back to the council by the end of this financial year (March 2019).”
The announcement goes on to add:
“The arrangements for remaining services are still to be considered and timescales will be confirmed in due course. However, it is also likely that the report will recommend that Highways and Regeneration be reviewed as one of the earlier phases.”
The news may come as a surprise to our members, especially in light to recent fraud and the damning Grant Thornton report which is going to be discussed at the Audit Committee on 22 November.
However, Barnet UNISON is not surprised by the decision: this is Barnet.
Last week we sent a report to all Councillors on the Policy and Resources Committee entitled:
“How bad does it have to get?”
You can read our report here:
The sheer number of Councils ending their contracts with Capita in 2018 is very worrying.
These big contracts are just as complex as the one in Barnet and often involve the same services that Barnet outsourced to Capita.
If Southampton, Sheffield, Blackburn and Birmingham can end contracts with Capita and still make savings then why can’t Barnet?
Barnet UNISON is not giving up on our aim to see all services brought back in-house.
This is why we are directly asking all of our members working for Capita this question:
“If you have any information, questions or concerns that you think we should know about, strictly in confidence, please make urgent contact with the Barnet UNISON office on 0208 359 2088 or email firstname.lastname@example.org”
In the meantime take a look at this infographic below for 2018 only.