A decade of improvement at Dundee City Council, but progress needs to quicken to tackle deep social issues

29 September 2020 Share this LinkedIn
Dundee City Council Best Value Audit Report

Over the last ten years Dundee City Council has improved many services for residents and played a major part in the ambitious programme of projects that have transformed much of the city centre.

In a report published today the Commission says the council is well led, with a clear vision for the future, alongside a good understanding of the problems affecting many residents.  

However, the Accounts Commission says the council must now work with partners to move even faster to address complex and deep-rooted problems such as poverty, inequality and the highest level of drug-related deaths for a city in Scotland. 

The council now needs to work with its partners to increase the pace of service improvement. It also needs to continue to reshape its services and, in particular, narrow the educational attainment gap for vulnerable or disadvantaged children. 

The financial sustainability of the Integration Joint Board, the body responsible for delivering health and social care services in Dundee, is a significant risk. The impact of Covid-19 will add to the challenges to come and it is critical that the council works with partners to address this, so it can continue to provide vital services to residents. 

Tim McKay, Interim Deputy Chair of the Accounts Commission, said,

Dundee is a well led council and whilst there has been much improvement to the city and services, those in disadvantaged areas have not all benefited from that transformation. The significant investment to transform parts of the city, most notably the waterfront, sits in marked contrast to the endemic poverty, inequality and drug-related deaths.

Many services have improved, but the council and its partners must now act faster to address these long-standing issues. As the council continues to transform the city it is critical that the social value to all Dundee residents of this investment can be demonstrated. Without this, those who are already disadvantaged will not see the benefits of the investment in and regeneration of their city.