Over the past four years, East Dunbartonshire Council has continued to improve many of its services and is focused on improving the quality of life for local people.
A report published today by the Accounts Commission recognises that the council is well led and understands the actions needed to improve still further. Local people are, overall, satisfied with their local services. Its education services are performing well, even in the most deprived areas.
Whilst the council has low levels of poverty compared to other Scottish councils, eight areas are impacted by relative deprivation. Improving its housing services, which are performing poorly compared to the national average, will help tackle these inequalities and support the most vulnerable citizens. Alongside this, whilst the council does much to engage its local communities, more could be done to involve those who rely the most on essential council services.
The council responded effectively to the multiple impacts of Covid-19, quickly delivering services differently, whilst targeting support to those most in need. The council should use additional Covid-19 funding, which it received late, to best support those in need.
Tim McKay, Deputy Interim Chair of the Accounts Commission, said:
Council services in East Dunbartonshire are good and councillors are focused on improving the quality of life for local people. Whilst the council has a clear determination on how it can improve services still further, there should remain a focus on its most vulnerable citizens.
East Dunbartonshire, like many other councils in Scotland, faces the pressures of an increasingly ageing population. Whilst some of its health and social care services are performing well, services need to be delivered differently in future, ensuring they are financially sustainable as the area looks to recover from the impacts of Covid-19. Housing services must also be improved, not least because housing is so fundamental to mitigating the multiple impacts of poverty and inequality.