Monday, 18 May 2009

Show the love this summer in south Leeds

The I Love South Leeds festival returns this summer for young people from the inner south area of Leeds who can get involved and enjoy another summer of fun sports activities, dazzling talent shows and exciting workshops for all you budding musicians.

Following its success in previous years, everyone aged up to 19 is being invited to the launch event of the festival, which is absolutely free to join in and is funded by Leeds City Council’s Inner South Area Committee.

To find out more about the amazing opportunities in store for the summer break, youngsters from the Hunslet, Holbeck, Middleton, Belle Isle, Beeston and Cottingley are being encouraged to come along on Thursday 28th May from 12noon until 2pm at The Hunslet Club, Hillidge Road, Leeds, LS10 1BP.

The festival launch will provide details of all the thrilling activities on offer this summer with the chance to sign up to take part and guarantee yourself one of the limited places. There will also be performances from the winners of last year’s Junior Superstar competition, live music from the one of the bands which took part in Turn It Up!, an energetic streetdance showcase and dance workshop from DAZL. There will also be free refreshments and food for those who come along.

South East Area Management is providing free buses to and from the launch event from various pick up points around inner south Leeds. To find out where the buses will be picking up from and departure times please contact the South East Area Management office on 0113 2243040 or visit the website at

Posters and leaflets about the festival are also available from local community centres, schools and libraries. If you need for any further details, please contact the Area Management Team on the above telephone number.

Councillor Angela Gabriel, chair of the Inner South Leeds Area Committee, said:
“I Love South Leeds is one of the highlights of the summer and it’s great to see it back for another fun-packed year.
“This is a chance for the area’s young people to take part in free activities, display their talents, make new friends and learn exciting new skills along the way.
“It promises to be another great summer in south Leeds.”

For media enquiries, please contact:
Michael Molcher, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 224 3937

Council wins top HR award

The city’s largest employer has been recognised for being outstanding in its approach to the wellbeing of its employees.

Leeds City Council received the award from the Public Sector People Managers’ Association (PPMA) at an awards ceremony in Manchester.

According to the PPMA, the wellbeing award is given to the organisation that has developed a strategic approach to wellbeing, and have effectively aligned wellbeing with a specific business strategy.

As the largest employer in a city of 750,000 people, Leeds City Council has a duty to safeguard the health and safety of its employees and customers. It also has a unique opportunity to positively influence the health of the communities it serves. It takes both of these responsibilities very seriously.

Councillor Richard Brett, joint leader and executive member responsible for human resources said:
“This award is a recognition of work that has been ongoing for some time now, making it all the more rewarding for us.

“We now need to make sure that we continue to deliver sustainable improvements in this area. This will keep the council firmly established as an employer who puts staff engagement and wellbeing at the top of its business agenda, and ensure that we are in a position to react to the needs of our staff in these difficult times, whilst positioning the organisation for future challenges.

“To receive this award for the sustained efforts we have made over a number of years is a great boost to the organisation.”

The council promotes safety, wellbeing and attendance as part of its People Strategy, and recognises that a healthy workforce is key to the delivery of good quality services. Poor levels of staff engagement, attendance and a poor safety record can have a knock-on effect in an organisation’s ability to deliver effective and high quality services.

A programme called ‘Happy, Healthy and Here’ is in place to help deliver the safety, wellbeing and attendance element of the People Strategy. This requires involvement from a range of stakeholders including the joint leader of the council, who is very supportive of work to improve the health and wellbeing of employees. Work has also taken place with staff groups and trade unions to foster and develop a more positive approach to this subject.

Key elements within the programme include:

A new occupational health service, where we have significantly increased our investment and implemented a new in-house service to increase capacity and pro-active health interventions.

A comprehensive employee assistance programme – we have a comprehensive employee assistance programme in place, which offers support for employees and their immediate family 24 hours a day, every day, covering legal, psychological support and health related matters.

Workforce health audit – the council has introduced an innovative programme that provides a proactive approach to health and performance using tailored lifestyle planning, together with practical health and wellbeing services. These are linked to measurable organisational performance objectives.

Employment policies – we have carried out a thorough review of our policies and procedures to ensure that managers are able to effectively manage areas that have a significant impact on wellbeing.

For media enquiries, please contact;
Claire Macklam, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 395 1578

Leeds offers drunk and disorderly a choice between a fine or alcohol education programme

People who are arrested in Leeds for alcohol related disorder offences and issued a Fixed Penalty Notice for Disorder could have their fine waived if they attend an alcohol education programme.

The new initiative will be launched on Wednesday 20 May.

Media Opportunity
Date: Wednesday 20 May 2009
Time: 10am
Place: Millennium Square, Leeds
Councillor Les Carter, chair of Safer Leeds, and Keith Lawrance, Safer Leeds alcohol and violent crime lead officer, pose with a giant-sized Fixed Penalty Notice for alcohol-related disorder.

The new scheme is a joint initiative from West Yorkshire Police and Leeds City Council, working through Safer Leeds, the city’s crime and disorder reduction partnership. It aims to tackle alcohol related disorder in Leeds city centre. The scheme is funded through the EU.

As well as the alcohol education programme, a police or council enforcement officer will speak with the individual about their behaviour, and agree an Acceptable Behaviour Contract for the future.

If the person is arrested again for alcohol related disorder a formal Anti Social Behaviour Warning will be given and the police or council may apply for an Anti Social Behaviour Order.

Terms of such orders could include prohibiting the person from coming into the Leeds City Centre on certain days between certain times.

Councillor Les Carter, executive board member responsible for community safety, and chair of Safer Leeds said:
“This excellent new scheme will give people who have committed offences while drunk a chance to change their ways and avoid a criminal record.

“If they don’t make the most of the opportunity and continue to offend, the police will take swift and appropriate action to encourage them to change their ways.”

The new initiative is part of a package of measures to encourage responsible drinking and offer treatment opportunities for people who want to change their drinking behaviour. It is being delivered with the support of a range of organisations in the voluntary sector, NHS and probation service.

• Safer Leeds is the Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership (CDRP) dedicated to tacking drugs and crime in the city. It is a partnership organisation between a number of local agencies including Leeds City Council, West Yorkshire Police, NHS Leeds, West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue and West Yorkshire Police Authority.

[18 May 2009]

For further information contact:
John Donegan
(0113) 247 4450 (mon-wed am) (0113) 395 1510 (wed pm-fri)