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Posted on 29 July 2010 at 12:00 GMT

Bristol anti-cuts lobby of minister

On 8 July, Bristol had a good turn out at its anti-cuts alliance launch meeting with over 100 community campaigners and activists from across the trade union movement. It was agreed to have another meeting on 22 July to set up a committee to organise and co-ordinate the action against cuts.

Bob Marshfield, Bristol City Unison steward (personal capacity)

The first event which the alliance supported was a lobby of Bristol City Council, called by the local government Unison branch for 26 July. That day Andrew Stunell was in town, a minister in the Department of Communities and Local Government, attending a meeting with staff and council officials over the 'Big Budget Conversation' - basically cuts!

Over 50 activists managed to make it to this lobby even though it was called at short notice and was in work time. There was lively shouting and speakers from across the movement, all attacking the basic idea that cuts are the only way to pay off the national debt caused by the bailout of the bankers.

It is understood that the staff Stunell had met at an earlier meeting told him that the jobs they do are very important and that they are finding it increasingly hard to give a 'frontline' service after the cuts of the last few years. These new cuts of between 25% and 50% will devastate our local authorities. Many speakers called this a full attack on our public services, with privatisation on the agenda as well. The next activity the anti-cuts alliance will be building for is a lobby of the full council meeting on 7 September.

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