Council satisfaction ratings suffer slump

According to the survey the level of satisfaction with SBC's libraries is the lowest in Scotland.
According to the survey the level of satisfaction with SBC's libraries is the lowest in Scotland.

Levels of satisfaction with Scottish Borders Council are falling and, in 2014/15, were among the lowest in Scotland, according to new data.

The trend is revealed in the Local Government Benchmarking Framework (LGBF) – published by the Scottish Government’s Improvement Service – which assesses and compares public satisfaction ratings across the country’s 32 local authorities.

The results are based on the Scottish Household Survey with the local perspective coming from a sample of 250 adult service users in the Borders.

It emerges that 74% were satisfied with parks and open spaces – the lowest in Scotland and down from 78% in 2013/14. And the percentage satisfied with the region’s libraries was also the lowest in Scotland – falling from 67% to 56% over the same 12 months.

Other services and their satisfaction scores are recorded in the LGBF as follows (2013/14 figures and Scottish grading in brackets):

•Leisure facilities – 59% (70%, second lowest)

•Museums and galleries – 52% (58%, second lowest)

•Local schools – 66% (71%, second lowest)

•Refuse collection – 77% (85%, fourth lowest)

•Social care and social work services – 42% (50%, ninth lowest)

•Street cleaning – 71% (74%, tenth lowest)

When the council uploaded the data last week, it sought to qualify the findings, noting the ratings were based on a much smaller sample than was used in the council’s own household survey for 2015 which elicited over 2,700 responses. “We always look to local sources of customer satisfaction information first,” said a spokesperson.

“For example SBC’s social work user survey carried out in September, 2015, showed that 85% of service users said they felt safe and 80% were satisfied with the design on their care, compared to the 42% reported nationally.”