Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/791/17839

From The Socialist newspaper, 4 December 2013

Kent: Unions and parents unite against all the cuts

A young service user on the 2 December 2013 Save Kent's Children's Centres protest

A young service user on the 2 December 2013 Save Kent's Children's Centres protest   (Click to enlarge)

Dave Semple

Sixty people gathered outside County Hall in Maidstone on Monday 2 December, in protest against cuts to children's centres across Kent. The protest was part of an ongoing campaign mounted by the Kent Trades Union Councils and "Save Kent Children's Centres", a parents group outraged by the devastating impact the Tory-sponsored cuts are likely to have on vulnerable families.

Under the Tories, 600 jobs are to go across Kent council services over the next three years.

In the week running up to the protest, Kent County Council (KCC) retreated from its previous plans to close 23 children's centres. Tory councillor Jenny Whittle, cabinet member for specialist children's services, announced that of the original 23, 'only' 12 would now close, six would operate with reduced hours and five would remain open on their current basis.

Opposition

Parents and the trade union campaign had run a petition that garnered 6,000 signatures, had staged an earlier demonstration in September, and had been quietly acquiring the backing of dozens of union branches. The 2 December demonstration was scheduled to coincide with a meeting of the council's cabinet which we expected would debate the proposals.

Chants of "No ifs, no buts, No public sector cuts" rang around the pedestrianised plaza. Banners from the civil servants union, PCS, were joined by union flags from posties, railway workers, local government and manual municipal workers, the unions of the Sure Start workers themselves and many more. KCC can be under no doubt that they face a lot of opposition.

Socialist Party members played the key role in pulling together opposition to the cuts. Our message was simple; not one closure, not one cut to hours, not one redundancy.

This was supported by enthusiastic applause when our speakers made these points, and plenty of debate was heard after the speeches about the position of the other political parties. It is well known that the Labour Party has made its share of the 578 Sure Start closures since 2010. And cuts implemented by the Green-led council in Brighton have made ridiculous the anti-cuts pose by Green candidates in Kent.

Delegation

Councillor Whittle accepted a delegation from amongst the parents present who went into County Hall and heard that 2.2 million 'savings' in staffing are planned, with the key staffing review to begin in January.

Talks have already begun with the local Unison branch about the potential for strike action amongst local government workers, particularly in the children's centres.

But the cuts also demand a political response. Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells will have local elections in 2014 and both are losing children's centres. The race is now on to find candidates who will stand for the only political group opposing all cuts: the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition, TUSC.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 4 December 2013:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Corporate Killers!

Boris - it's the system, stupid

SNP's white paper will not deliver decisive change

We need mass house building

Build action to save our NHS!

Them & Us


International socialist news and analysis

The fight against low pay in the United States


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Kent: Unions and parents unite against all the cuts

Fracking comes North...

Council uses court against Bedroom Tax victims

Support the fightback in Con-Dems' Dickensian Britain


Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

London TUSC groups plan for 2014 elections


Socialist Party workplace news

Save our fire service!

Npower job cuts must be fought!

Universities: second coordinated strike over pay

London University: strike by support staff

Support striking St Mungos workers

Civil service union calls for an end to violence in Jobcentres

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party comments and reviews

Is workfare coming to Morrisons?

Film review: Catching Fire

Why I believe in socialism


 

Home   |   The Socialist 4 December 2013   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Kent:

triangleAnger at south east Kent Momentum meeting

triangleReadmit expelled socialists: a proven record of fighting back

triangle#KeepCorbyn: reports from the campaign

trianglePent Valley school closure judicial review blocked

triangleRough sleeper death sparks calls for action

Unite:

triangleUnite local government sector plans strike ballot

triangleWorkplace news in brief

triangleUnison attacks Barts deal after failing to ballot their members for strike action

triangleBin strike: council humiliated in court battle - but war isn't over yet

Unions:

triangleWorkers' anger increases after Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangleHundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP

triangleTories scrap the NHS pay cap: now fight for real-terms pay rises!

Parents:

triangleYoung people being strangled by debts

triangleSchools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

Cuts:

triangleNorth London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

Council:

triangleSheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

Children:

triangleDon't wreck our rec! Campaigning to save green space in Standish

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

18/10/17

Art

'Dazzling' Bad Art show points to socialist future

18/10/17

Democratic rights

Conference on state spies and sabotage: who's watching who?

18/10/17

Council

Sheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

18/10/17

South West Wales

Hundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP

18/10/17

NHS

Uprising to save the NHS!

18/10/17

Socialism

Can you donate to the Socialism 2017 appeal?

18/10/17

East London

No cuts - hands off King George A&E!

18/10/17

North London

North London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

18/10/17

Leeds

Striking back against the sackers' charter at Leeds University

18/10/17

BAE

Nationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems

18/10/17

Royal Mail

Workers' anger increases after Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

18/10/17

Schools

Schools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

18/10/17

PCS

PCS ballots members to send message to government: scrap the pay cap

18/10/17

Swansea

Socialist Students 'welcome' Hillary Clinton to Swansea

18/10/17

Local government

Unite local government sector plans strike ballot

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party imploding...drive out the Tories

triangle11 Oct CWU fights court attempt to stop national strike

triangle11 Oct The fight against racial discrimination is tied to fighting against...

triangle11 Oct Catalonia: Workers can finish what Puigdemont won't

triangle6 Oct Boeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs

triangle4 Oct The nasty party turns on itself... but the Tories must be driven out

More ...

triangle18 Oct Warrington & St Helens Socialist Party: 1917-2017; the October Russian Revolution

triangle18 Oct Hackney Socialist Party: 100 years ago - the Bolshevik-led revolution

triangle18 Oct Tower Hamlets Socialist Party: Capitalism in Crisis - is Corbyn the answer?

triangle19 Oct Waltham Forest Young Socialists: Deaths in police custody

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2