A no-crisis public service system

As I’ve started working with a ‘severe and multiple disadvantage’ board in our beacon area, I’ve been thinking about what would change if, instead of talking about people as having multiple problems, or being the ‘frequent flyers’ of our services, we instead recognised that some people are severely let down by multiple services. We might ask which service interventions are frequent crisis creators, and what could we do to avoid them, or at least plan to mitigate their impacts. This Disruption Diary for the New System Alliance explores this idea. It draws on Gateshead Council’s work in response to people who had unpaid council tax. The standard response is enforcement: court orders and debt collection. But Gateshead Council recognised that that method doesn’t work because debt collection becomes just becomes one more problem to add to what is invariably an already-long list. So instead they set themselves two rules: do no harm and don’t break the law. They gave a small team £10k, and adopted strengths-based principles including no assessments, no referrals and don’t close cases. Read what happened next.https://newsystemalliance.org/2022/12/06/no-unplanned-crises/


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