Caring for People, Not Making Markets

A response to Durham County Council plans for Phase 2 of Investing in Modern Services for Older People by Durham County UNISO. The report examines the limits of expanding the social care market in the County, the impact of further homes closures and analyses the options. The County Council voted narrowly to stop further closures following a UNISON and community campaign.

PFI Journal No 52

The April 2006 issue of the PFI Journal contains an article by Dexter Whitfield, The Marketisation of Teaching, which examines the potential impact of the Building Schools for the Future programme on education. The Marketisation of Teaching is available in the Outsourcing and PPP Library.

Newcastle excludes facilities management and ICT from Building Schools for the Future contract

Newcastle City Council has set a national example by excluding soft facilities management services (catering, cleaning, grounds maintenance, security and waste management) and Information and Communications Technology (ICT) from the BSF/PFI contract. The ICT contract alone is valued at £16.5m. The UNISON branch of Newcastle City pressed for the exclusion of both soft FM and ICT at the start of the procurement process and commissioned the Centre for Public Services report How to Exclude Support Services from Building Schools for the Future and PFI Projects.

The City Council agreed to require bidders to submit a mandatory bid which was evaluated with in-house bids from Neighbourhood Services and the in-house ICT service working with Dell. The evaluation process included staffside input from UNISON and the Centre for Public Services together with GMB and staff representatives from some of the schools in the BSF project. A preferred bidder is expected to be appointed in March or April.

Public Private Partnerships in Ireland

Public Private Partnerships: Public Services or Corporate Welfare seminar. Dexter Whitfield from CPS gave a paper at the Public Private Partnerships: Public Services or Corporate Welfare seminar organised by the Centre for Urban and Regional Studies at Trinity College, Dublin in December 2005.