My week with the Mayor’s Office: George

Today’s guest blog comes from George Cole, who has spent the week gaining work experience in the Mayor’s Office and Labour Group Office at City Hall. 

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My name is George Cole and for the past week I have been having my work experience in City Hall with the Mayor’s Office and the Bristol Labour Group. The purpose of my placement, which I applied for through the WORKS programme, is to learn and understand how Bristol City Council (BCC) functions and how it manages public issues throughout the city.

Before I started, I had to partake in an induction to BCC and its strong policy on equality of opportunity and tolerance of diversity. This was followed by meeting the Bristol Labour Group, where I wrote a summary of recent press articles, from a variety of news sources. The purpose of this was so members of the Labour Group were able to be made easily aware of current events and issues that may affect the public or the public’s opinion of the Council.

Part of my week was also observing various meetings and briefings where I experienced, first hand, the discussion of important topics in Bristol and Councillors debating the most efficient way of handling said topic. By far the largest meeting I attended was the Cabinet Meeting in which members of the public and Councillors can question the Mayor on his recent decisions and actions, for example, a large portion of public questions were based on the situation with libraries around the city.

Before this Cabinet Meeting, I, the Mayor and senior officers from the mayor’s office went through the prepared answers for each of the questions Councillors and members of the public had submitted. The process involved considering phrasing and reactions from both the public and the press, as Councillors’ questions are usually written to search for a particular answer and can put the Mayor under pressure.

On another occasion, I studied the Mayor’s diary, which lists all the activities the Mayor engages with, which can be anything from meeting with important people to speaking at events. The diary is published so the public are able to follow what they Mayor is up to during his week.

A further activity I participated in was the research of other UK Councils, which was conducted in order to inform BCC on other possible methods and strategies on modernising how public libraries are the run in the city.

Overall, my time at Bristol City Council has been both interesting and enjoyable and I would recommend anyone interested in local government and politics to apply here for their work experience.

Taking Pride In Our People

Pride Flag.jpgEvery year across the world the LGBT+ community comes together to celebrate Pride. This year Bristol Pride Festival takes place from 2 – 15 July, with a number of other events happening all across the summer.

Most people see Pride as a carnival – a time to have fun. That is an important part of it, but it of course represents so much more than that. Pride is an active stance against discrimination and violence towards the LGBT+ community. It increases visibility of this social group, helps build a sense of community and celebrates diversity, recognising the significant value that it brings to our city.

At this time of year it’s important to look back on the origins of Pride, which commemorates the Stonewall Riots that broke out in Greenwich Village, New York in the summer of 1969. The police raided a popular gay club, prompting people to fight back in protest. To mark this event, a small group of people proposed the first Pride march to take place on the last Saturday in June.  This served as an annual reminder to highlight the wider injustices that the LGBT+ community came up against. In the 1980s and 90s there was a cultural shift, and grassroots parades evolved into the formally organised events that we currently have, which millions of people enjoy every year across the world.

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It is also important to remember that Pride is for everyone that wants to show support for the community. Given some of the struggles that continue to exist for the LGBT+ community here and across the world, visible support from allies is meaningful. We need to collectively take a stand against any forms of injustices wherever they arise, and Pride is a time to remember this, as well as a time to celebrate the progress we have made since the Stonewall Riots.

This year the main Pride Day in Bristol is Saturday 14 July, and I look forward to joining Councillors and Bristol City Council’s LGBT+ staff-led group on the Pride March taking place that day. Many other events are also taking place in the run up to the 14 July. Visit the Bristol Pride website to see what is going on and find out how you can join in.

Holding Our Nerve

There are some people, who like to shout loud, gasping to sign an agreement on the arena in Temple Island. There are others, demanding to know why it wasn’t signed 2 years ago. And then there are those who think being dogmatic is a badge of honour.

The answer to these unquantified demands is straightforward. Two years ago when I took office, just like three months ago when the Green party carried a motion to build the arena, we would have committed the city to almost £200 million of debt to build one of the most expensive arenas in the UK.

Anyone can make decisions – getting them right is the challenge. And this is a decision that will impact on the city for 50 years. Just saying “let’s build an arena with no clear criteria for success and the costs, jobs, effectiveness and sustainability don’t matter” is the very definition of a vanity project. I will not sign up to that, I will make an evidence based decision for the best outcome for the city using public money.

Much of the conversation, including in some parts of the media and at the council scrutiny committee last week, has erroneously fallen into a binary choice of the Temple Meads Island location versus the Brabazon Hangar in Filton. If it were a simple choice of “where to put the arena” with no other economic and social factors, everyone would opt for the Temple Island location.

But that simplistic debate misses a fundamental point. There are bigger questions around the potential developments of Temple Quarter, starting with the very basic premise of what is the best option for that land.

The KPMG report has been crystal clear on that point. An alternative option with a conference centre, hotel and a mixed use site of retail, commercial and housing would deliver at least three times as many jobs and over twice the economic output for the city. That cannot be ignored and all the people calling for the jobs and economic growth for Bristol South and East should welcome that clarity.

On top of those socio-economic factors, we have to consider the transport and environmental issues alongside the sustainability and the ability of the arena to do the very job it was predicated to do; bring the best entertainment to the city.

On transport, around 70% of people arrive by car and leave straight after the event. On an average of 2.5 people per car, that’s 3500 vehicles arriving into the city centre on every sold out event night into the most congested areas of the city and then looking for somewhere to park.

On environmental issues, those same vehicles would be arriving into the worst air quality areas of the city. It does surprise me that some politicians who purport to fly the flag of environmentalism conveniently gloss over that important fact. An arena would also be the highest of the options for carbon output in the city. As a rough estimate, using figures from a 2010 report, there are around 18 kg CO2e per ticket for an arena music event in the UK. For a 12,000 sell-out crowd at the suggested Temple Island arena that’s 216,000 kg CO2e or 216 metric tons. With 200 events a year, there would be 43,200 tons of CO2e generated.

Despite the demands for instant agreements, we have held our nerve. We inherited a project that was underfunded and far more expensive than had ever been told, but we have worked to make an arena deliverable.  We mutually terminated the agreement with the first contractor because costs were too high. Since then, we have reduced costs by working with Buckingham to value-engineer building costs. Then, a private developer entered ‘the arena’ and offered to build one at their cost and at their risk, meaning the city could possibly release tens of millions for other development. Then the operator made an improved offer to add revenue to the project, even if the numbers they stated in Scrutiny aren’t recognised by us.

By holding our nerve the operator has suggested they can do more and we are discussing that with them.

By holding our nerve the contractor has suggested it could come under the current target price and remove risk to the council. We have immediately asked them to formally table that offer.

We remain with a substantial funding gap to build Temple Island arena and those who claim it is ‘shovel ready’ are ignoring that basic point. Those that do bother to deal with that question, simply say ‘borrow it’. That’s easy when it’s not your money, but I will not risk council tax payers money when we have worked so hard to bring the city back into financial shape.

I have made space for Buckingham Group to table their publicly stated offer and then we will proceed.

I am committed to delivering an arena which our city needs, can afford, and which Bristolians can be proud of.

National Clean Air Day

Today, June 21st, is National Clean Air Day: a chance to take action against pollution to make the air cleaner and healthier for everyone. It is unacceptable that air pollution continues to place lives at risk. Whether by causing lung damage in children, or contributing to heart and lung disease in older people, this pollution is seriously affecting the long-term health of Bristol citizens, especially for low-income households with fewer transport options. This is why I’m calling on central government to help cities like Bristol fight pollution in our communities. To mark this event, I would like to invite you to attend a public drop-in event on College Green to discuss how the city can improve air quality and shape future Council proposals. Community events are being held across the city including at Easton, Totterdown, Bishopston and Southmead Hospital. It is important for all of us to work towards improving the air in Bristol, and I would encourage you to get involved. To find out what you can do, or for more information, visit www.cleanairforbristol.org.

Under my administration, Bristol is developing a Clean Air Plan targeting harmful traffic emissions, one of the key sources of air pollution. One of the aims of this plan is to reduce Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) pollution, which mostly comes from vehicle emissions, in line with international air quality limits. By changing traffic management and investing in sustainable transport solutions, we can reduce the pollution caused by road traffic. We have already been hugely successful in making our transport systems more sustainable by investing in public transport and cycling infrastructure. More people in Bristol are walking, cycling, and using clean-fuel public transport.

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Cllr Kye Dudd, Cabinet Member for Energy with responsibility for air quality, joined council colleagues on College Green to talk about what we are doing to reduce air pollution in Bristol. The Clean Air for Bristol stand gave the public the opportunity to ask questions about the developing Clean Air Plan, which includes a range of options being explored to tackle the problem, including charging some vehicles to drive in the city centre.

Yesterday, I attended the National Air Quality Summit to call on the government to support local leaders in our efforts to tackle air pollution. This summit brought together leaders including Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street, Mayor of Manchester Andy Burnham and local councillors such as Arlene Ainsley from Newcastle to identify common priorities, discuss best practice to mitigate harmful pollution, and work to lobby government to support local initiatives. I was able to share the valuable insight of Bristol and help shape national plans to ensure policies are fair and work for everyone.

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I am using my strong partnerships with the private sector to help unlock sustainable transport. Bus use continues to grow strongly in the city, bucking the national trend, and MetroBus was launched to sustainably meet this growing demand. First Bus, our largest local operator, has switched over 150 buses to low emission or low carbon fuelling, and more are on the way to transform the entire local fleet to Euro VI standard in the next few years. I believe air pollution is one of the most important issues facing Bristol. Cities are leading the solutions to pollution, but we need the support of government. This is why I am using both local and national partnerships to facilitate a culture shift towards clean air for all.

Future-Proofing Our Libraries

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This morning at Wick Road Library I was pleased to announce our plans to keep all libraries open. Despite the reduction in funding from the Conservative government in Westminster and inheriting a shortfall caused by the former Mayor’s overspend, we have found a way to safeguard funds.

My Cabinet in July will receive a report which recommends that the budget saving of £1.4m be withdrawn, meaning all 27 libraries be retained, and explore further options for community led facilities.  I am grateful for the work my Deputy Mayor with responsibility for finance Craig Cheney has done to make the report’s recommendations possible, and the work Deputy Mayor with responsibility for Communities Asher Craig has done with community groups to plan for the future of libraries.

I have listened to the results of the consultation and other public forums and I recognise the concerns people have about losing their library service. Working with councillors and local community campaigners, I am proud that the strong financial management of my administration enabled us to reach this position.

I have always believed in the outcomes libraries contribute to in our communities – literacy, digital inclusion and social contact.  This has always been a discussion around the best way to support those outcomes and we know the status quo is not the answer.

The library service has grown over time without a strategic plan of operation and continues to operate an out of date structure. We are now taking a strategic approach to Bristol’s libraries so that we can provide a library service that best meets the needs of the whole city for the 21st century.

With the council’s footprint reducing and with many libraries needing investment, we must adapt to ensure we have a sustainable library service people across the city can enjoy.

I hope local groups can take this opportunity to step forward and work with us to trial new ways of delivering library services. With time, libraries have already adapted: beyond free books and information, libraries are increasingly relied upon as social spaces and sources of digital facilities. By working to keep the libraries open, we will have more time to explore community led options and ensure we consider potential changes carefully and in line with the pace of community support and action. Now is the time for everyone to come forward and make sure we continue to build a library service we can all be proud of.

If you want to find hope on the politics of migration, look to the cities

There are few subjects, if any, more fraught for politicians right now than migration. Whether its Brexit and the hostile environment here in the UK, DACA and the Wall in the US or refugee policies in Germany, our national leaders seem incapable of finding solutions which can command popular support and avoid pitting one group against another and stoking tension and resentment. So why do I have hope as I prepare an address on the politics of migration for 250 American city leaders at the US Conference of Mayors annual gathering? Because I believe that where national leaders have failed, Mayors can change the game.

What’s unique about city leaders is our proximity to the issues we have to address. In Bristol we have 92 languages spoken on our streets, and over 180 countries of origin represented in our population. And as the first directly elected European city Mayor of African descent with a family heritage that finds origins in England, Wales, Ireland and Jamaica, an American wife, Jamaican aunts, uncles and cousins, a Swiss brother-in-law and an Indian heritage sister-in-law, the dynamism of diversity is part of who I am too. As a report from McKinsey has proven, I see every day how it drives our economic success as the fastest growing area in the UK outside of London. And I see how it enriches and energises our communities, as evidenced by last week’s Grand Iftar who saw 3,000 people from every background eating food cooked by Muslims in a Baptist Church kitchen.

But while I see the positive benefits of migration, I am also acutely aware of the challenges it brings. Earlier this year I sat in a room with the sisters of Bijan Ibrahimi, an Iranian refugee who was murdered on my city’s streets in 2013. The advantages available through diversity only come with leadership, inclination and the skills needed to work with difference.

Being this close to the issue of migration forces you to treat it with the nuance and maturity that it deserves. But being a city leader also gives you the opportunity to harness a unique set of resources in taking on this challenge. In Bristol we are developing a One City Plan that is owned by all the major local stakeholders such as businesses, universities, charities and which will focus collaboration and resources on the key challenges we face in the coming decades. At the heart of that plan will be a narrative of inclusion, which seeks to harness the skills, energy and culture of newcomers to the city whilst at the same time recognising that many people who have been here for a long time feel marginalised and left behind. Developing policies that allow everyone to contribute to and share in the prosperity of the city will not be easy, but it’s a challenge that unites our communities in a common purpose and with a shared vision.

Every city leader I talk to around the world shares this desire to bring every possible resource and every innovative solution to bear to create meaningful inclusion. The challenge then becomes how to amplify these efforts beyond individual cities so that they can begin to reshape our national and international discussions on migration. A few weeks ago I became the first Mayor to speak in the UN negotiations on the Global Compact for Migration, and I lost count of the number of people who told me that the city perspective was a breath of fresh air compared to the stale and negative politics coming from national governments. Opportunities like the Global Compact need to be seized in giving cities a seat at the top table of international governance, and international institutions like the UN need to be proactive in making space for city voices to come to the fore.

In October of this year Bristol will host the Global Parliament of Mayors, an institution created by and for city leaders to amplify their voices at the national and international levels. Migration will be a key theme, and next week I will be asking my American colleagues to play their full part. If we only look to our national governments for solutions we will continue to be disappointed and frustrated, because the tools of the 20th century will never be enough to tackle the challenges of the 21st. But if we turn our gaze to the cities, we can find hope that a politics of inclusion can start to break through.

Speech to the US Conference of Mayors 86th AGM

This speech was given to over 300 Mayor’s present at the US Conference of Mayors 86th Annual General Meeting in Boston MA on the 11th of June 2018.

Fellow Mayors, distinguished guests. The movement of people has been a fact of human civilisation ever since there has been human civilisation, but the challenges and opportunities we face today are more complex and dynamic than they’ve ever been. EU member states received 1.2 million first-time asylum applications in 2015 – sparking a political and humanitarian crisis, the ramifications of which are still unfolding. It certainly contributed to the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the EU. But according to some estimates as many as 200 million people could be climate-change refugees by the middle of the century. If the EU struggles to control its borders when 1.2 million people move, what would happen if 200 million do?

The current configuration of nation state politics is directly and indirectly creating and compounding migration push factors such as inequality, climate change, tensions and political insecurity. It’s then failing to deal with the consequences in a way that recognises the equal worth of migrants or provides political stability. Of course individual political actors and parties play a role in this. Policy matters. But there is a deeper problem at work here in the inability of the nation state with its historic commitment to boundaries, control and defined identities to support the kind of political leadership capable of meeting the migration challenge in front of us.  Nation states may simply lack the tools to meet the challenge.

In the 19th and 20th centuries, both of our countries had powerful stories about who we were and what we were – that generated an extraordinary collective energy. But in the last few decades we’ve seen those simple narratives become increasingly brittle and fractured.

Despite having British blood that goes back centuries, there are no national conversations about identity and belonging that fail to leave me a little concerned. It seems increasingly clear to me that the national level alone is incapable of renewing a compelling vision of shared identity that is fit for purpose in the 21st century.

And of course when it’s a mess at the national level, the international level is just mess squared. Our interdependent world needs leaders with emotional intelligence, mutual understanding, multi-dimensional world views and empathy. Instead we get crassness and obstructionism better suited to the binary, zero sum world when the interests of discreet nation states could be pursued irrespective of the interests of others.

People have always moved around and they have always come together, forming and growing cities, for education, culture and employment, growing national economies. Cities are growing at a rapid rate again and that’s why people are looking to city leaders like us in a new way. It’s in cities we are better placed to bring difference together for the common good.

As for my own story I am product of migration. As the first directly elected European city Mayor of African descent with a family heritage that finds origins in England, Wales, Ireland and Jamaica, an American wife, Jamaican aunts, uncles and cousins, a Swiss brother-in-law and an Indian heritage sister-in-law, the dynamism of diversity is part of who I am too. The catagories we are required to fit into are too simplistic.

In Bristol my colleague Cllr Hibaq Jama is a former Somali refugee and was elected to sit alongside me as a city leader. My Deputy Mayor Asher Craig is – we are led to believe – Europe’s first Rastafarian Deputy Mayor. My other Deputy Mayor Craig Cheney comes from a white working class background. One of 13 children he experienced the extreme poverty on occasion eating his food from a bin. Today as my head of finance me overseas out £1bn budget. My Chief of Staff grew up on one of the poorest estates in Bristol. His family still live there. Together we lead, close to our city in the city’s interest: refugee, migrant, child of migrant and indigenous. We can do this at the city level.

It’s at the city level we can talk about identity as something that is multi-dimensional rather than the single dimensional approach nations take.  In Bristol, like other cities, we are developing a one city plan, bringing together city partners, business, volunteers, communities, universities and city institutions; to deliberately plan the future and set targets the whole city is pointed at – for an inclusive growing economy where nobody is left behind.

As city leaders, let’s bring our strength and our optimism to bear in reshaping the way politics works at the national and international level. We need global governance to move into its next iteration and that means the representatives of international networks of cities sitting alongside national actors in shaping the national and international context in which we live.

At this moment we find ourselves trying to lead a 21st century world with 20th century structures. People have always known this. That’s why nations banded together. They looked up and across to collaborate. They now need to look in to and across from their cities.

The political innovation migration needs will come from international collections of cities. We create new best practices. We have shown that. We now need the space to create the new internal politics. This won’t be a Big Bang but a collection’s of smaller impacts and agreed not merely between national governments but between empowered cities across national borders. Three weeks ago I was invited to speak at the negotiations on the Global Compact for Migration at the UN.  Surprisingly, until that point there had been no formal city input.

And yet, as I pointed out in my speech:

  • most migrants leave cities, go to cities and return to cities
  • roughly twenty per cent of migrants worldwide live in just 20 cities
  • over 70% of the draft Compact’s objectives can only be fully realised with the active participation of city authorities
  • and I would add cities can lead even where national governments are failing to deliver, or even opposing, the compact

Its authors know they need to make it real and that cities are critical to that. The challenge they face is how to harness the collective and legitimate voice of cities in support of the Compact’s aims, and that’s why they are so keen to come to the Global Parliament of Mayor’s Summit, held in my city of Bristol this October and they will continue their dialogue with us there.

I am involved in the Global Parliament of Mayors, we want that organisation to help bring together the different networks and put Mayors at the front of decision making.   Ensuring networks work for city leaders and not the other way round. Cities and city networks must get better organised, more coherent across the geographies and the many issues around which they gather. The prize of doing so is greater influence. The price of not doing so is diminishing returns from the many city meetings city leaders are asked to attend. If we don’t get our networks organised, we’ll be charged with having a confused voice on the issues that matter and key decision makers will move on without us.

If we don’t get organised, that which made us a success will be our downfall. We need to move into the next stage of city organisation to enable world governance to move into its next iteration: where networks of cities sit alongside national politicians as they shape national and international policy.

We need to work with interdependencies – name the big 6 networks we need working together. We need to get them to coordinate their diaries to ensure that we as mayors aren’t pulled in 15 different directions and our impact diluted.

The Global Compact for Migration is an exciting opportunity for cities to influence that will be before us at the Global Parliament of Mayors Summit in October, and there are others on other topics such as public health and security. But there’s an equally important challenge that we will also be taking on, about how we organise ourselves and those networks and how we collaborate well with all city partners.

In my city I’ve worked to develop an approach we call “Big offer, big ask”. We say to people, rather than coming and asking for things or demanding them, come and make your offer. Tell me what big thing do you want to get done for the city and then tell me what do you need from me and the city to enable you to do it.

In that spirit I make you all, an offer:

Bristol and many cities across the world will back you in the stands you’ve taken on issues such as migration and climate change.

I ask that you lead. We look to US cities as a source of political hope at this time.

This means understanding the role of US cities not only as nation shapers but global shapers.

Mayor’s and cities in the US lead the way as a source of leadership and accountability and we are campaigning to make the UK develop regional devolution on your model, passing on real powers to the people who live in the community, who look citizens in the eyes every day, and away from distant pillars of abstract decision making.

You are welcomed to Bristol in October and let’s amplify our voice together. Let’s work together to target the international bodies whom we want to have a formal cities presence.

This moment has found us: national governments not delivering, people disillusioned with politics, services failing, global economic, people and environmental trends beyond our control: leaving people vulnerable to being seduced by charlatans proffering the wrong answers to the right problems. We have no choice but to step up. So we have to get organised.

Power won’t come neatly wrapped in government parcels. It’s a social force and it’s got by organising. Conservative or liberal, republican or democratic – we can’t look around and think we’re making a good job of this planet.

We are interdependent. You fought to move from dependence to independence. Stephen Covey says the highest state is interdependence. I now ask you to fight for that. Thank you.

Channel 4 Shortlist

We are delighted to have been shortlisted by Channel 4 to become its new national HQ or one of two new Creative Hubs.

Bristol has a culture of innovation which disrupts and has always been a city that makes things happen. We are a city which reflects the diversity of the UK and the globe, with a commitment to inclusion, stretching from our grassroots organisations to the top of political leadership.

Channel 4 is built on innovative and distinctive broadcasting which stimulates debate and champions alternative points of view. It is committed to diversity and nurturing new talent to change people’s lives. These are values we share and want in Bristol and it is because of this that I believe that Channel 4 would be good for Bristol and Bristol would be good for Channel 4.

Now, with our fantastic partners across the city’s creative and media sectors, we look forward to welcoming Channel 4 in the coming weeks to show them our talent, creativity and the possibilities of our city. We will discuss how we could work together and develop their vision for the future alongside ours.

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Good Faith Partnership Opportunity

Bristol is a thriving, diverse and growing city. But it can also be a fractured city, with inequalities across race, age, class and location.

As the city develops and moves forward, creativity and determination are required to make sure that nobody gets left behind. That’s why in April of this year David Barclay started a secondment from the Good Faith Partnership to the City Office as an Advisor on Inclusion.

The Good Faith Partnership is a social consultancy which works to help leaders in the worlds of faith, politics, business and charity work better together on common issues. The secondment is funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and is designed to help the Mayor and the City Council to work more strategically with others in the city to make Bristol more inclusive and integrated, with a particular focus on newcomers to the city.

The Good Faith Partnership is now looking to hire a Deputy Advisor to assist David in this work. The role will involve a range of activities, from relationship building and networking to research, project development and contributing to larger initiatives such as the Global Parliament of Mayors Summit and the One City Plan. The successful applicant will work for 3 days a week starting as soon as possible.

Further information and contact details are included in this document: Deputy Advisor on Inclusion JD

GDPR – New Data Regulation

New rules relating to how we all collect and process personal data – the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) – come into effect from the 25th May 2018. GDPR aims to streamline and unify data protection laws across the EU and will replace the previous 1995 data protection directive which current UK law is based on.

GDPR is the biggest change to data protection rules in 20 years with wide ranging consequences for an organisation as large and complex as Bristol City Council. Under GDPR the council must:

  • Comply  with the enhanced rights for individual’s given to them under GDPR including the right to have data sent in machine readable format to another organisation in certain circumstances
  • Comply  with subject access requests within the reduced time frame of 30 days
  • Always use an alternative basis for processing other than consent where possible, consent can no longer be gained by the use of ‘opt outs’, an individual must now ‘opt in’ to give consent
  • Provide extra information to individuals when collecting their data in a privacy notice
  • Demonstrate compliance with data protection laws by  keeping records of our processing activities
  • Appoint a statutory  Data Protection Officers if the organisation is a public authority, or processes sensitive data or personal data on a large scale
  • Report data breaches within 72 hours to the Information Commissioner’s Office where there is a risk to the rights or freedoms of individuals

Craig Cheney, my Deputy Mayor with responsibility for Finance and Performance has set up a project to ensure our compliance and make the required changes in each service area. By the 25th of May deadline we will have to make sure the key building blocks will be in place, which includes new ways to report data breaches a review of key documentation and training for staff. I am grateful to everyone working to make sure the council is compliant, and ensures that we can protect citizen’s data.

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