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From The Socialist newspaper, 20 January 2016

Carmarthenshire Unison campaigns against council cuts

A Unison member

Carmarthenshire County Unison members lobbied the Plaid-led council on 12 January along with other campaigners such as Save Our Parks and Playgrounds. We were protesting against cuts to adult community education, asset transfers of parks and sports fields, and the proposed outsourcing of leisure centres and theatres.

As Plaid councillors walked past the lobby they were reminded of the promises they made when they were in opposition to the then Labour-led council. At that time they called on the council to use 6-7 million of its reserves to mitigate against the worst of the cuts. They also supported Unison's campaign for a living wage etc. All we hear now is the sound of silence!

Carmarthenshire County Unison produced a no-cuts budget for the previous administration. We have called on Plaid - who claim to be an anti-austerity party - to implement our budget. It would prevent cuts for three years while they build a campaign with other councils and trade unions to stop the cuts.

Plaid-led Carmarthenshire County Council is making 40 million cuts over three years, yet they have 120 million in reserves.

Plaid councillors blame the Labour Welsh Assembly Government for passing on Tory cuts and that is true but wasn't it Plaid that voted for the Labour budget in the Welsh Assembly?

We will not let Plaid get away with dodging responsibility for their actions or lack of action. They have a choice - fight and vote against cuts or do the Tories' dirty work for them as they have done to date.

Our members are looking to councillors to fight the cuts. All they see is a game of musical chairs where Plaid replaces Labour in coalition with the so called Independents (Tories in all but name) and vice-versa. But they are all a coalition of the willing when it comes to cuts.

Carmarthenshire County Unison was the only local government branch in Wales to produce a no-cuts budget. We will continue to fight all cuts and fight to get councillors that will stand shoulder to shoulder with us in voting against cuts.

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In The Socialist 20 January 2016:


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