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From The Socialist newspaper, 7 March 2018

Salford nurseries consultation delayed as mayor pledges to "fight for the five"

Under community pressure, Salford Council has agreed to delay closing five nurseries, photo by DFID/CC

Under community pressure, Salford Council has agreed to delay closing five nurseries, photo by DFID/CC   (Click to enlarge)

Salford Socialist Party

After a huge public meeting of 250 angry parents and staff demanded that Salford council "fight for the five" remaining council-run nurseries, mayor Paul Dennett has agreed to do just that.

The nurseries are facing closure because of Tory cuts to the 'dedicated school grants'. In a welcome step, the Labour council has announced that it will delay the consultation and spend that time building a campaign for the extra funding.

The council announced it would back the campaign, already launched with a committee of staff and parents elected from each nursery, shortly before the budget-setting meeting on 28 February. Mayor Dennett said that they would be inviting Jeremy Corbyn, John McDonnell and other Labour front-benchers to a huge meeting and march in the city and sending a delegation to parliament to demand the extra money needed to keep the nurseries open.

No-cuts approach

Socialist Party members have long campaigned in Salford for the council to take this approach - not just on the single issue of nursery closures but on all cuts. This shows that the strategy we have put forward is possible.

Councils can refuse to make cuts. They can delay the decisions by borrowing money or using reserves and use that time to build a mass campaign to demand the money back from central government.

The response among parents, staff and the wider public to the campaign has been incredible. If prepared to fight all cuts, the councillors would get the overwhelming support of the working class in the city. If this road is taken, this weak Tory government could be brought down.

The people in Salford are willing to fight the nursery closures with or without the council, but it does strengthen the campaign to have the mayor and councillors - who ultimately make the decision - on our side. But it is not without its contradictions.

At the moment the council and mayor have only put the start of the consultation back by a month. This is unlikely to provide the time to force the government into a retreat and we - along with the local Unison trade union branch, staff and parents - are calling on the council to remove this restriction and to use all available resources to hold off the consultation while the campaign develops.

Furthermore, after making this pledge, Dennett and other supportive councillors went straight into a budget-setting meeting and voted unanimously for a further 11 million of cuts. This is while they have 13 million in reserves.

Reserves can only be spent once, but as is being shown with the campaign to save the nurseries, if that money is spent to 'buy time' while fighting for the money stolen from the council to be given back to the city, services and jobs can be saved in the long run. We will support every step in this direction the council takes, while continuing to argue that it can go further - and that councillors can refuse to make cuts.

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In The Socialist 7 March 2018:


What we think

May's EU speech kicks the can down the road


Socialist Party news and analysis

NHS: public health - not private profit

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Toys R Us, Maplin: worsening retail crisis claims more jobs

Them & Us


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Capitalism oppresses women - fight for socialism!

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The Socialist inbox: International Women's Day


Socialist Party workplace news

UCU strike: bosses on the run

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Whole lotta shakin' goin' on in Merseyside DOO dispute

PCS: Re-elect the left and fight for decent pay

Hull workers united against bosses

FCC Environment strike solid


International socialist news and analysis

Syria: No ceasefire for 'hell on earth' eastern Goutha

Japan - toxic legacy of the Fukushima disaster


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

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Hands Off HRI campaign group meets Corbyn and Ashworth

TUSC plans to stand on Waltham Forest anti-monster block platform

Derbyshire says: No fracking way!

Coventry shows solidarity with the Syrian people


Socialist Party comments and reviews

Fighting sexual harassment in entertainment

The Socialist inbox


 

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Related links:

Salford:

triangleManchester & Salford Socialist Party: The Grenfell disaster

triangleSalford 'no-cuts' budget includes cuts and tax rises

triangleManchester & Salford Socialist Party: What does the general election result mean for 2020?

triangleManchester & Salford Socialist Party: The State and the lessons for the labour movement

triangleEnd low pay - support Salford Royal security workers' action

Nurseries:

triangleChildcare in crisis: A socialist solution

triangleSchools: 'We have to fight for everything'

triangleWhat will we do if they cut Camden nurseries?

triangleSalford nursery campaigners take fight to parliament

Council:

triangleFighting the cuts at the ballot box in Liverpool

triangleNorthampton People's Budget - cuts and privatisation is a failed strategy

triangleEaling People's Budget - cuts can be resisted

Cuts:

trianglePeople's Budgets - a socialist answer to cruel cuts

triangleHackney children's centres - more education cuts are devastating

Parents:

triangleOaks Park strikers call eleven days' more action

Nursery:

triangleCardiff community fights nursery closure: Council must step in

Government:

triangleFight to defend homelessness services

Closures:

triangleRoad closures: Hackney residents have not been consulted

Budget:

triangleLeeds TUSC: A People's Budget for Leeds

Jeremy Corbyn:

triangleTen years since our 330-mile Jarrow March for Jobs

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