At a meeting of its Cabinet Committee on the 22nd April 2013, Birmingham City Council approved three inter-linked policies aimed at maximising the social and local economic value it derives from its £1bn a year procurement spend. These were:
- A Living Wage Policy.
- The Birmingham Charter for Business Social Responsibility, and
- A Social Value Policy.
The social value policy is largely unchanged from the document we helped draft for the local authority a couple of months ago.
The Social Value Policy adopted by the council is important because it commits the authority to implementing the new legislation more widely than the minimum requirements of the Act. In it, the council spells out that it will apply social value to both services and goods, and not just services as the Act stipulates; and to all contract values, and not just contracts above the EU thresholds, as the Act stipulates.
This alone could mean that opportunities for those most able to deliver on social value are dramatically increased.