Leading Labour County Councillors have said that the views of users and early year professionals must be the central factor in any decision on Children Centres. Councillor Claire Richards and Jocelynne Scutt were speaking after the decision by the Tory Chair of the Children & Young People’s Committee to take the proposal for £1 million of cuts to Children’s Centres to the County Council’s Full Council Meeting on 17th October.
Councillor Claire Richards, Labour County Councillor for Castle says, “We have said from the outset that the consultation was rushed and fundamentally flawed and that the voices of users and those running our vital Children’s Centres were simply not being heard. While it is good that councillors from every area will not get the chance to debate and decide on the future of this service, first and foremost we need to listen to all those who will be affected by these savage cuts.”
The Conservative-run County Council’s proposals would result in 3 out of every 4 Children’s Centres across the County being cut including 4 in Cambridge itself.
Councillor Jocelynne Scutt, Labour County Councillor Arbury says, “It’s disingenuous and even misleading to pretend that it’s a choice between a service or a building or that a ‘pop up’ service in someone’s front room could replace a properly run Children’s Centre. If it wasn’t for this government’s austerity agenda we would probably be expanding these vital services, but instead the only ambition put forward to is shrink them to their most basic level and sell off the buildings.
Members of the public who wish to speak at the full council meeting, must register their request at firstname.lastname@example.org by midday on Tuesday, October 10.