Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/931/24209
Closing of the children's centres could cost lives
Samira Kamaly-Fard, Liverpool Socialist Party
Children's centres in Liverpool are at risk of closure with many unsure about their future. With the government making cuts to a much-needed service, do they not realise how detrimental it could potentially be to parents and children?
Centres offer a lot of services free of charge, such as family solicitors, national careers service, along with courses for better parenting and confidence building. They also offer first aid courses and baby massage, which can be quite costly, if not impossible for working class families otherwise.
In addition, children's centres offer play sessions every day, for various ages up to five. This is somewhere where parents can come along with their children to interact without the distractions at home.
The centres are an essential part of the community, they especially play a big role in the prevention of mental health issues. Many new mothers may have postnatal depression, or just be scared with a new baby.
The centres offer support in how to deal with difficult issues. They can be a sanctuary for many women.
The staff in the children's centres are trained to see developmental delays in children. There is safeguarding in early childhood which can be addressed promptly, and help reduce abuse and childhood mortality. The centres also help advise parents how to get back into work when their children go off to school, if not maybe before.
The centres are a great place for integration which can help in the fight against racism. Especially in a multicultural area such as Toxteth, where lots of different ethnicities use the service, whether Somali, Eastern European or of Asian background, everyone helps each other and has formed a beautiful community.
There have been many marches to oppose the cuts, yet more needs to be done to protect this vital service.
In The Socialist 11 January 2017:
NHS in meltdown
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