Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/695/13234
Greece and Italy get unelected technocrats - Southampton gets chief executives!
Gavin Marsh, Southampton Anti-Cuts Union
A November Southampton city council meeting approved the 'change programme', newspeak for the wholesale privatisation of council services.
Tory council leader Royston Smith said we face a 'financial crisis and a global crisis which we cannot deny or avoid'. He is right in saying this. However we, working people, are not responsible for this crisis.
There is no way that the council can make an estimated £50 million savings over the next three years without a devastating impact on jobs and service provision. They are attempting to mask this by inviting outside providers, like their friends Capita, to do the dirty work. Nothing will be safe from these profit mongers if they got away with their plans.
Gas, electric, water and rail privatisation were a bonanza for the bosses. Council tax payers are being asked to line the pockets of the super-rich and suffer huge cuts.
What is scandalous is that the cabinet will just be asked to rubber stamp cuts after 'delegating responsibility' to the chief executive, an unelected and unaccountable individual to implement these changes.
Unfortunately New Labour councillors have not offered an alternative proposal, allowing the Tories to mock them over their "mythical manifesto".
Southampton Anti-Cuts Union and Southampton Shop Stewards Network will redouble its efforts to defeat these disastrous plans. The recent council strikes and the public support they received, alongside the one-day public sector strike on 30 November, show the growing mass opposition to the austerity agenda.
- No mandate for the cuts diktat
- No to privatisation of council services
- Defend local democracy
- The city council financial crisis is not of our making
- For a budget based upon the needs of citizens not the bankers and billionaires
In The Socialist 23 November 2011:
Pensions' strike, N30
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