Department for Communities and Local Government

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This article is part of the Counter-Terrorism Portal project of SpinWatch.

The Department for Communities and Local Government[1] (branded as Communities and Local Government and referred to as the DCLG) is the United Kingdom government department for communities and local government since May 2006. The department originated in 2001 as the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister. Eric Pickles is the current Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, taking over from John Denham MP after the May 2010 election.[2]

Contents

Background

The department was formed in July 2001 as part of the Cabinet Office with the title Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM), headed by the Deputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, John Prescott. In May 2002 the ODPM became a separate department after absorbing the Local Government and Regions portfolios from the defunct Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions. During the 5 May 2006 reshuffle of Blair's government, it was renamed and Ruth Kelly was made the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government. The Deputy Prime Minister became a minister without portfolio and his office had purely secretarial functions. Hazel Blears was appointed Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on 28 June 2007. Yvette Cooper used to be employed with this department, but has since got a new job in the Treasury.

In May 2006 a large chunk of the Home Office that used to deal with Muslim issues moved to the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG). On its creation it also assumed the community policy function of the Home Office and has since established the 'Commission on Integration and Cohesion' and the Commission for Equalities and Human Rights.

Ministers and civil servants

The Permanent Secretary is Sir Bob Kerslake (Robert),[4] who took up the post on 1 November 2010 and is also Head of the Home Civil Service.[5]

Peter Housden was the previous Permanent Secretary (to October 2010).

Former ministers

Initiatives and involvement

The Department for Communities and Local Government is one of the main players in the devising and implementation of the Prevent strand of the British Counter-Terrorism strategy, Contest 2.

Notable examples include:

Preventing Violent Extremism (Funding by DCLG)

The DCLG has been responsible for the main strand of funding that has been provided to the task of Preventing Violent Extremism (PVE), or Prevent, as it is commonly referred to. In 2007-08, the DCLG funded £6 million for the Preventing Violent Extremism Pathfinder Fund (PVEPF) to support seventy priority local authorities in England to advance a programme that would “tackle violent extremism.”.[6]

In June 2007, the DCLG also distributed £650,000 through the Community Leadership Fund (CLF) that would build the capacity of Muslims to fight extremism and complement the work being undertaken by local authorities under the PVEPF.[7]

On 31 October 2007, Hazel Blears (the then Secretary of State for the DCLG) announced that the DCLG would provide a total of £45 million worth of funding for local partnerships from a period of April 2008 to March 2011.[8] The £45 million announced by Hazel Blears went to: 76 local authorities in 2008-09, 82 local authorities in 2009-10 and will go to 94 local authorities in 2010-11.[9]

In August 2009, a £7.5 million cash injection was authorised by the DCLG to local authorities in order to enhance the struggle against “al-Qaeda influenced extremism” and to “improve effectiveness of the Prevent programme.”[10]

A further £5.1 million is being distributed over the period of 2009-2011 through the CLF programme. [11]

The Challenge and Innovation Fund totalled to £3.2 million and was allocated in May 2009 (for delivery of projects during 2009-10) by the DCLG to local authorities in England to assist them with preventing violent extremism.[12]

Including smaller avenues of funding, the total money that the DCLG will have allocated to Preventing Violent Extremism from April 2007-11 is estimated to be £80 million, of which £61.7 million will have been through local authorities.[13]

Executive Agencies

Notes

  1. 10 Downing Street - Department for Communities and Local Government
  2. The Rt Hon Eric Pickles MP
  3. Both Flint and Wright are members of Labour Friends of Israel, which does not suggest a neutral role in dealing with 'muslim' issues.
  4. New Permanent Secretary for Communities and Local Government
  5. Sir Bob Kerslake is new Civil Service boss, BBC News
  6. 'Preventing Violent Extremism Pathfinder Fund: Guidance Note', DCLG, p. 3 - accessed 17/11/09
  7. 'Preventing Violent Extremism: Community Leadership Fund,DCLG, p. 3 - accessed 17/11/09
  8. 'The Prevent Strategy: A Guide for Local Partners in England: Stoppin People Becoming Terrorists or Supporting Terrorists and Violent Extremists' (Part 2),HM Government, 3 June 2008, p. 48 - accessed 17/11/09
  9. 'Local Authorities Receiving Funding in Support of work to Prevent Violent Extremism, DCLG, Date Unknown - accessed 17/11/09
  10. Local Authorities Receive Fresh Cash Injection to Tackle Extremism, DCLG, 28 August 2009 - accessed 17/11/09
  11. House of Commons, Hansard Column 878W, DCLG, 23 April 2009 - accessed 17/11/09
  12. Challenge and Innovation Fund DCLG, Date Unknown, accessed 17/1109
  13. Arun Kundnani,Spooked: How Not to Prevent Violent Extremism October 2009, accessed 17/11/09
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