Javid defends LGA comments that went down ‘like a bucket of cold sick’

Communities secretary Sajid Javid has defended comments he made at the Local Government Association (LGA) conference last week by saying that “good friends are honest and open with each other”.

Speaking at a summer reception hosted by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Local Government, Javid acknowledged comments made by disgruntled councillors after he criticised the sector for losing the trust of the public following the Grenfell Tower disaster.

Delegates were reported to have said that the speech “went down like a bucket of old sick” and was also described as a “cat food lasagne” which the Cabinet minister alluded to in his speech.

But Javid stood by his comments, saying that he was only making them because he wanted to help authorities do better.

“I think it’s fair to say my speech at the LGA got a mixed reception from the local government family,” he said. “Look, I know some people weren’t happy with parts of that speech, but let me be clear. I love what local government does for this country. And I’m proud to represent you, defend you, and speak for you at the Cabinet table.

“Every day of the week, up and down the country, we see amazing work being done by councillors.”

The communities secretary went on to praise local authorities, as he said that over the past few years, Whitehall had asked a lot from councils, “and time and again you have delivered”.

“I want local government to be as good as it can be,” he continued. “Sometimes, that’s going to involve me saying things you don’t all agree with. But good friends are honest and open with each other.

“If I’m ever critical of the work being done by some local authorities, it’s only because I want to help you do better.”

Javid added that this honesty was a “two-way street” and reiterated that his door was open and his phone was always on for local government colleagues.

“If we don’t see things the same way, that’s fine,” he added. “The very nature of politics and government means we won’t always agree.

“Only through a strong, open, constructive relationship between local and central government can we make sure that councils are able to deliver the services everyone needs.”

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become a PSE columnist? If so, click here


There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment


public sector executive tv

more videos >

latest news

View all News


Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >
How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

19/06/2019How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

Tom Chance, director at the National Community Land Trust Network, argues t... more >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this feeling of imminent change than the article James Palmer, mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, has penned for us on p28. In it, he highlights... read more >

last word

Prevention: Investing for the future

Prevention: Investing for the future

Rob Whiteman, CEO at the Chartered Institute of Public Finance (CIPFA), discusses the benefits of long-term preventative investment. Rising demand, reducing resource – this has been the r more > more last word articles >


Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need ... more >

the raven's daily blog

Cleaner, greener, safer media: Increased ROI, decreased carbon

23/06/2020Cleaner, greener, safer media: Increased ROI, decreased carbon

Evolution is crucial in any business and Public Sector Executive is no different. Long before Covid-19 even became a thought in the back of our minds, the team at PS... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

public sector events

events calendar


August 2020

mon tue wed thu fri sat sun
27 28 29 30 31 1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30
31 1 2 3 4 5 6

featured articles

View all News