Merton Council has confirmed that it is going to be amongst the first authorities in the country to launch a corporate charging policy. The strategy will regulate concessions for discretionary services to ensure equal access to facilities in the borough.
Merton’s Cabinet has agreed the corporate charging policy, which will ensure charges for services such as allotments, sports pitches and pest control are set at the right level for both customers and the council. A series of principles that apply to the charges have been agreed, including clear criteria for concessions based on those used for allocating free school meals.
Whilst the policy is being introduced with immediate effect, more work will be carried out to review and refine it further in light of experience from its implementation. The introduction of the policy will contribute to work being done across the council on its overarching strategy to improve social inclusion.
The social inclusion strategy aims to ensure that no individual or group is excluded from participating in society, for whatever reason, against their wishes. It aims to make sure as equal access to services as possible for all residents of the borough, particularly those living on low incomes.
Councillor Samantha George, Deputy Leader and Cabinet member for Corporate Resources, London Borough of Merton comments:
“Merton is really proud to be one of the first authorities in the UK to launch this corporate charging policy. It highlights best practice and the importance of addressing the inequalities that we know exist in the borough. The launch also demonstrates the hard work and commitment being placed on putting the needs of all our residents first through our strategy for social inclusion.”