Wokingham Borough Council (WBC) and the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead (RBWM) have agreed to appoint a joint Director of Adult Social Services (DASS) to manage the statutory social care duties of the councils.
This arrangement has developed through the growth of partnership working across the Royal Borough and Wokingham Borough. It confirms a clear commitment to strengthen services to its residents while at the same time securing greater resilience across the workforce through developing opportunities to work across a larger geographical area
Stepping into this role as joint DASS will be Angela Morris who will be leaving her current role as Operations Director at Optalis which delivers adult care and support on behalf of both councils.
As part of her new role Angela will lead a piece of project work to assess the future direction of Wokingham Borough Council’s adult services.
The joint DASS post will be for a trial period of nine months which will then be reviewed by the councils.
Commenting on her new appointment, Angela Morris said, “I am thrilled to have been given this opportunity to focus on the adult statutory requirements of two councils. This role of shared DASS illustrates the direction and leadership at WBC and RBWM who have taken a joint approach that is collaborative, innovative and commercial. As both councils are the sole shareholders for Optalis and Optalis delivers Adult Social Care in its entirety for RBWM and in part for WBC I will be working with Martin Farrow and his senior management team very closely.”
Alison Alexander, managing director at the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead said: “This arrangement provides an opportunity to work across a bigger footprint, with a larger workforce who are dedicated to support all our adult residents who need adult social care services. Angela is the best person to turn the idea of the two boroughs into a reality. She has a strong solid professional background, that is grounded in being person-centric – whether working with residents or staff. She has a strong track record of delivering safe and secure services that are personalised to residents and is highly regarded by the Elected Members of the Borough. I am personally really pleased that Angela has agreed to take-up to vital role. Angela recognises that as neighbouring councils, we have an established positive history of working together and want to build on this to provide consistency, while ensuring that our adult care services remain sustainable.”
Manjeet Gill, interim chief executive at Wokingham Borough Council, said: “We’re delighted Angela has been appointed to this important role. She brings a great deal of experience to the post as well as commitment and enthusiasm, which will stand her in good stead for the future. As with all local authorities around the country we’re facing extreme financial pressures in adult social care owing to rising demands from our older population. Because of this we took the decision to separate the director posts for Children and Adults. And for a trial period we will share the director for adults with the Royal Borough. This partnership builds on from the many successful shared services we have with the Royal Borough, offering value for money for all our residents.”