Tuesday 03 March 2020
The Policy & Resources Committee is proposing to make tackling poor living standards a priority for the States of Guernsey in the coming four years.
While various projects and policies are already underway that will individually lead to some improvement, more needs to be done to coordinate these efforts and ensure that together, they deliver real changes in people's lives.
The Committee has published a Policy Letter framing 'Improving Living Standards' as a priority area to be developed and incorporated in the Future Guernsey Plan (2020 - 2024). It will seek to fulfil the following vision Statement:
"To provide an environment which supports those in our community most at risk of deprivation and gives them the opportunity to thrive"
This priority area will provide a framework within which the States are better able to co-ordinate, develop, report and monitor policies which seek to improve the wellbeing of Islanders. It will encompass a broad range of ongoing and future policy work which will contribute to improving living standards. Among other things this will include work already underway such as:
- the development of the Islands' provision of primary and mental health care services, the review of the Children Laws, and the development of the Strong Families initiative by the Committee for Health & Social Care;
- the work undertaken by the Committee for Employment & Social Security in areas such as Income Support, pension provision and elements of the Supported Living and Ageing Well Strategy;
- the development of the Justice Strategy by the Committee for Home Affairs; and
- The implementation of the Children & Young Peoples Plan by the Committees for Education Sport & Culture and Health & Social Care
Deputy Jane Stephens, Lead for Social Policy on the Policy & Resources Committee, said:
"Most of us in Guernsey are fortunate enough to enjoy a very good standard of living, but we must recognise that in any community there are those who do not enjoy the same advantages. As a government and as a community it is our duty to ensure that we support those who need it.
"There are many complicated issues that contribute to poor living standards and all States Committees have to work together towards a shared objective if we are to tackle them successfully. By developing a priority area that brings together all the good work that is currently underway to tackle issues of poor living standards and deprivation, we can make even more of a difference. Similarly, if we don't coordinate our efforts we may not identify the areas where attention is needed most and we may find we're not targeting our limited resources in a way that delivers the best outcomes for our community."
The Policy Letter was published on 2 March 2020 and is available here: https://gov.gg/article/176562/Improving-Living-Standards