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Written Statement - The Commission On Public Service Governance And Delivery

The Rt Hon Carwyn Jones AM, First Minister of Wales

The Programme for Government includes a series of reforms and reviews to strengthen the delivery of efficient, effective and accessible public services. As part of this, I am establishing a Commission on Public Service Governance and Delivery and I am pleased to announce that Sir Paul Williams has agreed to chair this Commission. Nick Bennett, Nick Bourne, Nerys Evans, Juliet Luporini, Garry Owen and Cllr Alun Thomas have agreed to serve as members of the Commission.

The Welsh Government is committed to values of fairness and equality.  We do not accept poverty and inequality, or the erosion of public services which we believe need to be sustainable and fit for our times. The importance of protecting and supporting our public services is crucial as we know that, in particular, our most vulnerable individuals and communities rely heavily on these services which impact so directly on the day to day quality of their lives.  These services could not exist without the dedicated public service workforce we have and we are committed to developing and supporting those who work in public services.  

We do not consider that the market is the solution to the challenges facing these public services.  The needs of individuals, families and communities can be complex, are often met through a range of organisations - including non devolved services - and do not neatly fit into organisational boundaries.  Since public sector budgets are likely to continue to tighten, and demand pressures grow, there is a clear need to examine how services can be sustained and standards of performance raised, so that people in Wales can continue to receive and influence the public services they need and value.  And as we can see from the impact of the current financial decisions by the UK Government, a healthy public sector is essential to a healthy economy.  

The establishment of this Commission on Public Service Governance and Delivery provides an opportunity for those who are involved in delivering services, those who are politically accountable for them and users of them to examine how public services are governed: that is, held accountable for their performance and delivered most effectively to the public.  

I will make a further statement to the Assembly on the remit of the Commission in due course.