News item

Does your local authority deserve an award?

AwardThe Trading Standards Institute is once again sponsoring the public protection category in the MJ Awards 2013 together with the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health - it has now been renamed the Trading Standards and Environmental Health Award.

Council regulatory services play an essential role in protecting public health and enhancing community well being.  The MJ Trading Standards and Environmental Health Award is an opportunity for councils to showcase the best work being carried out by regulatory services and to highlight innovative examples of good practice.  

Applications for projects can range from workplace health and safety to consumer protection matters, including food safety and standards to the wider regulatory services agenda, including environmental protection.

The closing date for the 2013 MJ Trading Standards and Environmental Health Award is 15 February - nomination is free and easy, click here to proceed!

Andy Foster, TSI’s Operations and Policy Director,said: “There are lots of fantastic projects being carried out at local level that deserve national recognition.

"I am looking forward to seeing the nominations this year and being inspired by how local government, despite going through very challenging times, is well and truly alive and kicking.  It is full of creative and innovative people who continue to deliver life changing outcomes for the most deprived of communities.”

The winner of the 2012 award was the environmental services team from Forest of Dean District Council.  The winning entry featured its pioneering work with the police to combat metal theft. The environmental services team has set up a partnership with the police taking a unique ground-breaking approach to scrapyard regulation. The project works with and supports local scrapyard businesses to achieve self-regulation and a level playing field between operators, securing voluntary regulatory agreements. These include CCTV installation and a ‘No ID = No Cash’ system.

It was clear to the team that success at a local level could result in displacement of criminal activity to neighbouring regions so in June 2011 the team led the creation of a wider partnership and hosted a meeting that brought together council and policing colleagues from surrounding areas to share good practice and encourage uptake of the innovative approach.  While metal thefts continue to rise on a national level, they have reduced in the Forest of Dean.

Cllr Martin Quaile, Forest of Dean cabinet member for the environment said: “It’s wonderful to see the hard work and creativity of this council being acclaimed for leading the way nationally.  The team’s work has made a significant contribution to the Government’s proposals to tighten up scrap metal regulation. This is making the market more difficult for thieves while ensuring that law abiding people can continue to recycle metal with confidence.”
There was a total of 54 entries in this keenly fought category and the judges, Lord Curry of Kirkhale, Non-Executive Chair, Better Regulation Executive; Ron Gainsford, Chief Executive, TSI; and Graham Jukes, Chief Executive, CIEH were faced with a long and difficult task in deciding the winner.

The judges also highly commended Chelmsford Borough Council for its innovative use of animal welfare legislation, Luton Borough Council for a pilot project to look at a new way of working with small businesses and Surrey Trading Standards Service for a project to protect the vulnerable from the activities of cold calling home maintenance traders.

MJ Awards

Pictured left to right: Nick Robinson with, from Forest of Dean DC, Cllr Martin Quaile and members of the environmental services team Roger Garbett, Karen Richardson and Haydn Brookes being presented with the trophy by Ron Gainsford.