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BACKGROUND & HISTORY OF THE LOCAL STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP

Local Strategic Partnerships (LSPs) are non-statutory, multi-agency partnerships, which match local authority boundaries. They bring together at a local level the different parts of the public, private, community and voluntary sectors with the aim of allowing different initiatives and services to support one another so that they can work together more effectively for the benefit of local people.

LSPs were first recommended by Central Government to all local areas in 2001; the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007 reinforced their role.

According to 2008 guidance, the role of LSPs is to:

• identify the needs and ambitions of local communities, and resolve, or
arbitrate between competing interests;
• coordinate the consultation and engagement activities of partners;
• produce a Sustainable Community Strategy (SCS) with a shared local vision and priorities for action (based on data and evidence from the local area and its population);
• produce a Local Area Agreement (LAA) based on the priorities identified in the local SCS;
• oversee local resource planning and alignment to achieve more effective commissioning and better outcomes;
• review and manage progress against the priorities and targets agreed in the LAA, and ensure delivery arrangements are in place.

In 2002, Reading Borough Council joined with its key partners (the police, the health service, the fire and rescue service, higher education, business and the voluntary, community and faith sectors) to form a Local Strategic Partnership, called the Reading 2020 Partnership, to help improve the quality of life for Reading’s local communities.

The LSP consists of the Board, the Forum and a number of sub-partnerships (e.g. Community Safety Partnership, Children's Trust) which have responsibility for specific thematic areas.

The Reading 2020 Partnership has responsibility for the overall production of the Sustainable Community Strategy, which sets out the vision and priorities for Reading, and for delivery of the Local Area Agreements, which set out how those key priorities are measured. The current SCS can be found elsewhere on this site.

The LSP Board and partnership agreement were reviewed in 2008 to ensure that they are able to meet future needs. A new LSP Board, more streamlined and with a more strategic role, came into existence in Sept 2008; details of current Board members and their organisations are shown elsewhere on this site.

To support the Board, a new LSP Management Group has also been set up and a part-time LSP Co-ordinator has been appointed who is responsible for the ‘welfare’ of the LSP and how effectively it works as a partnership.

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