So the next round of council cuts are on the way across Scotland and the way things are going there won’t be much left at this rate. When is enough enough?
Since 2010 there have been increasing charges, increasing council tax, but declining employment and declining services. This year it’s going to be brutal again, staff in most councils live in fear for their jobs year in year out, with ever increasing workloads and ever increasing levels of stress.
We cannot keep cutting at the rate we are. Services like libraries, youth work, elderly care, voluntary sector grants are all at breaking point, at this rate all we will have left is the basics plus education. We are getting to the stage where we might as well not have local authorities given their levels of responsibility diminish year on year where all they are there to do is pass on the bad news. Local authorities across Scotland face increasing ring fencing of their budgets by Government, around 60% according to COSLA. What this does is leave the vital services that make up our communities vulnerable, services like planning, community learning and development, events, sports facilities, libraries, tourism, business support and environmental health all sit unprotected in council budgets which means they take the brunt of the job losses and the cuts, ENOUGH.
This week we have seen that life expectancy has fallen again, the poorest and the most vulnerable are dying younger, we should be ashamed of that. What is really apparent also is that the services that get cut are the very services that the most vulnerable, the poor, children and young people rely on. We have decisions to make and ending ring fencing would be a start, a proper discussion on taxation and how we do this, we need to demand more powers for Holyrood, governing with one hand tied behind your back doesn’t work. When you cut libraries you cut the ability of people to job hunt and apply for their draconian starvation benefits, when you cut sports facilities and community learning and development you cut youth work and leave young people with no where to go, adults with no groups to get involved in, you break down involvement in decision making and you break the link between communities and what binds them.
I understand there are no easy answers, I know that but we have got to take a stand. The Scottish Government have got to take a stand, I appreciate we are at the mercy of a government of another country for our financial well being, that isn’t right but it isn’t going to change any time soon but it needs to. I actually fear for our communities and I fear for my city Dundee, Dundee can’t lose any more jobs, as I have blogged before when I look around me and talk to friends and family there is a feeling that things are getting worse, a lot worse and that they can’t take much more. It’s time to stop playing politics and stop playing nice, if the SNP Government don’t take a stand now, be seen to say enough is enough then we will be trapped in this UK as the votes dry up and the people give up, the very thing that Westminster wants, but either way giving into cuts is exactly what unionists want and enough is enough.
maybe if you got a WIG there would not be so much trouble
Thanks I’ll take it under advisement.