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Budget 2016 Home Page Maori, Other Populations and Cultural Sector - Estimates of Appropriations 2016/17

Social Sector Overview

Social Sector Overview Statement

Vote Maori Development and Vote Pacific Peoples in this volume are part of the Social Sector, which also includes Vote Education (in volume 2), Vote Health (in volume 6), Vote Corrections, Vote Courts, Vote Justice and Vote Police (all in volume 7) and Vote Building and Housing and Vote Social Development (both in volume 10).

Government Priorities for the Social Sector

Agencies within the social sector deal with some of the most complex issues facing New Zealand today. In order to respond, agencies deliver a wide range of services to New Zealanders including universal services and services targeted at individuals, families and communities with complex needs that are met by a number of agencies.

The Social Sector delivers improved social outcomes for New Zealanders through the delivery of better public services.  There are two main mechanisms through which the delivery of better public services is being driven:

  • Better Public Services Results, and
  • a Social Sector Investment Approach.

In order to prioritise resources and outcomes, four focus areas for the sector have been agreed:

  • focus on the small proportion of New Zealanders for whom joint action is required
  • develop and implement the Social Sector Investment Framework - including data and analytics
  • assess progress against government targets and take joint action where necessary
  • advise on structural arrangements to support collective social sector action.

How we will Deliver on Government Priorities

To work towards the focus areas Social Sector agencies will develop joint activities and interventions as required. These will focus on delivering sustainable results focused on vulnerable and/or high risk New Zealanders. Examples of existing cross agency work include the Social Sector Trials, Children’s Teams/the Children’s Action Plan, Whānau Ora and cross government streamlined contracts.

The Social Sector also aims to bring together the extended views of agencies within the sector, for example Education brings together the views of the tertiary, primary and pre-school sectors. This helps ensure there is a high level of collaboration amongst sector agencies, focusing on interdependencies, linkages, results and identifying efficiencies.

Social Sector agencies are also working together in the Social Investment Unit (SIU). The SIU is working towards creating a social investment system that takes a population-centred approach to investment. Using data and analytics, the system will provide a common basis for social sector agencies to identify shared populations of interest, set clear outcomes for those populations and measure how effective the services are that they receive.

The Social Sector is continuing to support the building of the tools and infrastructure required to deliver results focused on vulnerable and high risk populations. This includes the development of the data infrastructure, investment tools, and evaluation methods needed; as well as the necessary support for effective implementation.

The Social Sector has an on-going focus on delivery of the Government’s priorities for better public services. This includes joint accountability for achieving Better Public Services Result Areas 1-4: Long-term welfare dependence; early childhood education participation; infant immunisation and rheumatic fever; assaults on children.  

How we will Measure Performance

The Government has challenged the Social Sector to achieve better results. To deliver on expectations, agencies have a clear focus on priorities across the sector. In addition to delivering against the Better Public Service targets, the following priority areas have been identified by the sector to support the work of agencies and support collaboration and collective impact:

  • data integration and analytics
  • service and planning integration and the use of local decision making
  • a continued focus on a shared set of results
  • exploring making investment decisions as a sector.

In addition to formal collective responsibilities for the Better Public Service target areas, social sector agencies are continuing to change the way they work together. They aim to provide joined-up responses and co-ordinated services to get better results for individuals, families and communities.

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