Unions say council 'in denial' over cuts

TRADE unions have shown their love for Darlington with a protest against council cuts in the town.

Darlington Against Cuts and the Darlington Trades Union Council urged shoppers and residents to join their campaign during a day of action on Saturday.

The event, on the theme We Love Darlington, was headed by members of Unison as well as GMB, with representatives from other unions. The three-hour protest was held in Joseph Pease Place, in the town centre.

Bob Wood, a Unison spokesman, said: "This is our chance to show people that we love the council services and that we love Darlington."If we don't show we love Darlington and protest against the cuts, the services will be gone and there will be nothing left.

"We think there is a lot of denial among our councillors that the cuts will be made and the services will still be there.

"You cannot make these cuts and expect the same level of service."

Protestors handed out leaflets to residents, asked them to sign their Million Voices campaign and urged them to consult with ward councillors.

Mr Wood added: "What we would really like residents to do is to go to ward surgeries and ask their councillors what is going to happen to their services and what cuts we are going to face.

"It is the public who will lose their services. Local government is being hit harder than any other public sector."

Michael Middleton, from Darlington, was one member of the public to speak to the campaigners. He said: "I don't think the public what is going on yet. They are going to cut our services and it will effect everybody but we don't realise how much yet."

Members of Darlington for Culture also joined the efforts to explain their vision for Darlington Arts Centre and culture provision in the town.

Paul Harman, who formed the group, said: "We are quietly confident we have helped to influence the council to change its mind and give us a stay of execution for a year."

A number of councillors and Darlington MP Jenny Chapman were among those to show their support to the unions.

Darlington Borough Council is planning to cut its budget by £20m, with the loss of a range of services and 360 jobs.

Unions plan on continuing its opposition ahead of the council's cabinet meeting on February 22.

Comments (4)

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2:27pm Mon 14 Feb 11

loopeyloo75 says...

The unions have agreed to many of the council cuts....they have rolled over and given up.
The unions have agreed to many of the council cuts....they have rolled over and given up. loopeyloo75
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9:01pm Mon 14 Feb 11

MST75 says...

hang on isn't darlington council a labour council??? So therefore how can our Labour MP support the union, against her party lead council???? strange lady
hang on isn't darlington council a labour council??? So therefore how can our Labour MP support the union, against her party lead council???? strange lady MST75
  • Score: 0

10:42pm Mon 14 Feb 11

NYexile says...

Here's a fact for you: public spending has risen, in real terms, every month since the Coalition came to power.
We're spending more than we ever have done on the public sector and will continue to do so until 2013/14.
That's a matter of public record, yet for some reason the unions quoted here make no reference to the fact.
The problem is that so much of that spending, around $40 billion (billion!) a year goes towards paying the interest (only the interest, not the original borrowing) of the debts accrued during 13 years of a Labour government.
The next time someone from Labour moans about 'cuts', remind them that we wouldn't be having this conversation if it wasn't for the fact that Labour politicians preferred to spend more on debt interest repayment than on the country's entire education budget.
One final thought: It's the Labour-controlled Darlington Council that is choosing which 'cuts' to make. For political reasons they focus on the Civic Theatre and libraries when they could be axing legions of pen-pushers instead.
Then again, keeping your otherwise unemployable vote on the public payroll has always been the Labour way.
Here's a fact for you: public spending has risen, in real terms, every month since the Coalition came to power. We're spending more than we ever have done on the public sector and will continue to do so until 2013/14. That's a matter of public record, yet for some reason the unions quoted here make no reference to the fact. The problem is that so much of that spending, around $40 billion (billion!) a year goes towards paying the interest (only the interest, not the original borrowing) of the debts accrued during 13 years of a Labour government. The next time someone from Labour moans about 'cuts', remind them that we wouldn't be having this conversation if it wasn't for the fact that Labour politicians preferred to spend more on debt interest repayment than on the country's entire education budget. One final thought: It's the Labour-controlled Darlington Council that is choosing which 'cuts' to make. For political reasons they focus on the Civic Theatre and libraries when they could be axing legions of pen-pushers instead. Then again, keeping your otherwise unemployable vote on the public payroll has always been the Labour way. NYexile
  • Score: 0

10:32am Tue 15 Feb 11

Chris Close says...

Unfortunately much of what NYexile says is correct.

I think John Williams, Cliff Brown, Dela Smith from the Education Village got out with hefty 'packages' before the proverbial hit the fan.

The Education 'Village' is falling apart mainly because it was 'gerry' built to start with.

The Council has massively overspent largely on salaries and bonuses for incompetent managers and pigeons are now coming home to 'roost'.

In the meantime what they are now doing is cutting front line services for disabled people who cannot talk back.

Disgusting.
Unfortunately much of what NYexile says is correct. I think John Williams, Cliff Brown, Dela Smith from the Education Village got out with hefty 'packages' before the proverbial hit the fan. The Education 'Village' is falling apart mainly because it was 'gerry' built to start with. The Council has massively overspent largely on salaries and bonuses for incompetent managers and pigeons are now coming home to 'roost'. In the meantime what they are now doing is cutting front line services for disabled people who cannot talk back. Disgusting. Chris Close
  • Score: 0

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