Protecting our public services
Public service markets are a critical to many social enterprises and therefore the focus of much of our activities.
- Health and social care
- Children's and young people's services
- Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
- Local Government
- Spin outs and mutuals
Our aim is to ensure that public service markets are open to social enterprises as we believe that the social value they create is better for services users and better value for the tax payer.
We are regularly influencing Cabinet Office policy. We sit on number of groups with the aim of getting more business to social enterprises. As strategic partners of the Cabinet Office we are able to feed into policy development at its earliest stages. Some of our most recent submissions can be found here – link to consultations page.
Health and social care
Health and social care is an area where social enterprises are particularly active. As such we are working closely with the Department of Health, Monitor and the NHS Commissioning Board to ensure that policies in the new health and care world are not designed to exclude or disadvantage social enterprises.
Over the next few months we will be building evidence to feed into the “fair playing field” review. This is something we pushed for within the Health Act. The health secretary must lay a report before Parliament in March 2013 on all barriers to a “fair playing field” in the market for NHS service provision, with recommendations on how they might be addressed. We will be building a dossier of evidence on this subject including areas such as VAT, assets, contract size and capital stipulations. If you’d like to feed in please contact Ceri Jones.
We also have a programme to support the new commissioning structures to better understand the social enterprise sector – link to health programme.
With a number of other partner organisations, Social Enterprise UK is delivering work under two programmes funded by the Department for Education.
Both aim to ensure social enterprise is a key part of the DFEs agenda. More specifically they are also focused on sharing and supporting best practice social enterprise models in the children and young people’s sector, and as part of these programmes, we are delivering business support guidance, events and surgeries for social enterprises and voluntary and community organisations serving children, young people and families.
For more information and the latest resources, as well as news and events for start-up social enterprises and voluntary and community organisations which serve and work with children, young people and families, visit the CYP Social Enterprise Network on this website.
Social Enterprise UK is a strategic partner in Defra’s Social Enterprise Strategic Partnership; we work to embed social enterprise across Defra’s various policy strands, including, work on rural communities, the green economy and local food production and networks. We contribute to seminars, workshops, consultations and any other activities which seek to grow awareness of social enterprise in Defra, particularly to advocate how social enterprises can work with Defra to achieve their strategic objectives.
Local government is critical for social enterprise. Much of our work with local government is ensuring that they understand social enterprise so that they can effectively support and commission social enterprises.
Alongside this we are working to ensure that local authorities are aware of the social value act.
The government is committed to the, mutualisation of public services. They believe, as we do, that giving committed public sector workers the autonomy and control to do what they do best - and the freedom to innovate can have dramatic effects on the quality of the services they run.
We are working very closely on this agenda recognising that the vast majority of organisations created under this scheme will be social enterprises.
We are part of the delivery team for the Mutuals Information Services. We are also part of the Mutuals Taskforce aiming to ensure that those groups planning on setting up social enterprises have the best chances to thrive.