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Population assessments and area plans

Section 14 of the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 (the 2014 Act) requires local authorities and LHBs to jointly assess the extent of the needs for care and support (including the needs of carers for support) in the local authority's area and the extent to which those needs are not being met. These assessments are referred to as ‘population assessments’.

As part of the population assessment, local authorities and LHBs must also assess the range and level of services needed to meet the care and support needs that have been identified, and the range and level of services needed to prevent, delay or reduce needs for care and support and to achieve the other purposes set out in section 15 (preventative services). There is also a requirement to assess the actions required to provide this combined range and level of services through the medium of Welsh.

Section 14A of the 2014 Act was inserted by the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015 (the 2015 Act) and it requires local authorities to prepare and publish area plans in response to the joint population assessment, required under section 14 of the Act.  LHBs have a similar responsibility and local authorities and the relevant LHBs can agree to prepare and publish a joint area plan.

Section 37 of the 2015 Act requires each public service board – membership of which includes local authorities and LHBs – to undertake an assessment of the economic, social, environmental and cultural well-being of its area. These assessments are referred to as assessments of local well-being.

In preparing assessments of local well-being, section 38 of the 2015 Act  requires public service boards to take into account the most recent population assessment carried out by the local authority in conjunction with a LHB.
Each public service board must, under section 39 of the 2015 Act, prepare and then publish a local well-being plan which is required to set out how the board intends to improve the economic, social, environmental and cultural well-being of its area to achieve the 2015 Act “well-being goals”. The well-being goals can be found under section 4 of the 2015 Act.
Part 1 of the Children and Families (Wales) Measure 2010 requires each local authority to prepare and publish its strategy in respect of its contribution to the drive to eradicate child poverty in Wales.

Section 2 of the Children and Families (Wales) Measure 2010 imposes a duty upon local authorities (and other bodies)  to prepare and publish a strategy for contributing to the eradication of child poverty in Wales. The strategy must set out objectives chosen by the local authority which relate to the broad aims which are relevant to, and which can pursued in, the exercise of its functions. The strategy must also contain the actions to be performed and functions to be exercised by the local authority for the purpose of achieving its objectives.

However, a local authority’s duty to publish a child poverty strategy under section 2 of the 2010 Measure is discharged on publication of a local well-being plan under section 39 or 44(5) of the 2015 Act by the public services board of which the authority is a member, but only if the authority's strategy is an integral part of that plan.

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