What actions are the Welsh Government taking to address concerns raised by the Auditor General for Wales report on 21 November 2019 that local authorities receive limited support from Welsh Government, and confirm if this is partly because the VAWDASV team is small and has experienced significant turnover?
The Welsh Government strives to support local authorities to implement its policies, striking a balance between national leadership and support, and enabling public servants to exercise professional judgement at local level.
The Welsh Government has co-produced with local authorities and other key stakeholders, a range of guidance to support them to exercise that judgement. Officials also host a number of stakeholder groups, such as the practice-sharing meetings for perpetrator services, a Sustainable Funding Group and will shortly be reinstating the All Wales Learning Group. Local authorities are represented at these meetings.
Officials conduct quarterly face-to-face meetings with each of the regions to discuss their VAWDASV delivery plans and to review progress. This is an opportunity to raise questions and clarify expectations, and there is regular communication between meetings.
As with other public services, the Welsh Government manages its resources within a tight budget. The VAWDASV team has been relatively stable over the past two years.