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25 July 2017

Birmingham Labour council to close 26 Children's Centres

More than 100 people, including Socialist Party members, demonstrated outside Birmingham Council House on Saturday 22 July over the Labour council's plans to close 26 out of 70 children's centres across Birmingham.

Earlier in the week, Jack Dromey, Labour MP for Erdington, along with some centre users from his constituency, handed in a 1,000 signature petition to Downing Street calling on the government to intervene to stop the closures. He would have been better calling on the Labour council not to carry out the cuts.

The council wants Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust to provide the children's services in churches, mosques, nurseries and GP surgeries so it can save money on the buildings that are currently used.

In some cases the Children's Centre is the only amenity for the community in the area. It is not clear what funding the NHS has for the services or what the contracts will cost the council.

Five centres are to close in Hall Green, five in Hodge Hill, four in Erdington, three in Edgbaston, three in Sutton Coldfield, two in Northfield, two in Selly Oak and one in Yardley.

Clare Wilkins, Birmingham South East Socialist Party