We have all read in the newspapers about West Sussex county council’s plans to cut £2million from the Youth Service budget. The plans which were presented to a meeting of the Children’s and Young Persons Services Select Committee on Wednesday can be seen here (4 on the agenda – do look at the union responses too)
A webcast of the meeting can be viewed here.
Labour county councillor Chris Oxlade was at the meeting and says:
The plan in my view is seriously flawed with little or no detail on how cuts will affect young people, how the community/voluntary sector will take over Youth Centres and the report is riddled with contradictions. There was no consultation with partners and the Unions, or even the Youth Cabinet. I proposed that we reject the report and have a special meeting at a time when all the questions asked at the meeting are answered in full. This proposal was voted through, with none against and one abstention. To which the cabinet member threw on the pressure claiming the proposal will cost WSCC £100,000 every month it was delayed.
The cuts are severe and will affect every town and village in west sussex.
WSCC are trying to get another meeting together in very soon, which I think is insane to get all the information together and talk properly with partners.
There is a large swell of protests over the cuts, I urge you to please write to the press, join the Facebook campaigns and spread the word to make people aware of what the cuts will mean. You can see the proposed cuts to centres on section 9 of the report.
We will have more to say about this, but for now why not have a look at the petition which is being organised by Unite the Union. You can download it, sign it and return it to the union – and there is no reason why you can’t get a few more signatures by circulating it amongst your work colleagues, family and friends first.
The Tory controlled West Sussex County Council is proposing a huge cutto its Youth Service which has been described by government inspectors as providing “excellent value for money.” The main Tory Minister who
is seeking to dismantle youth services throughout the country is also from Sussex.So we need to show strong opposition and protect services and jobs.
One part of our campaign is to get a petition signed by sufficient people to trigger an automatic full council debate. We have a really tight timescale for this as a result of the late consultation on key documents. However, I would be grateful if you could get some signatures and return them as detailed on the petition form.
Thank you for your co operation.
Doug Nicholls, National Officer,
Community, Youth Workers and Not for Profit Sector.
Unite, 35 King Street, Covent Garden, London WC2E 8JG
Unite, Transport House, 128 Theobald’s Road, Holborn, London, WC1X 8TN