Council budgets are now at breaking point – and Labour councillors are saying that enough is enough.
Councils are facing a funding crisis and the Tory government is to blame.
Austerity has caused huge damage to communities up and down the UK, with devastating effects on key public services that protect the most defenceless in society – children at risk, disabled adults and vulnerable older people – and the services we all rely on, like clean streets, libraries, and children’s centres.
• With an aging population and growing demand adult social care faces a gap of £3.5 billion – with only 14% of council workers now confident that vulnerable local residents are safe and cared for
• Government cuts have seen over 500 children’s centres and 475 libraries close, potholes are left unfilled, and 80% of councils workers now say have no confidence in the future of local services
• Northamptonshire has already gone bust due to Tory incompetence at both national and local level, and more councils are predicted to collapse without immediate emergency funding
• Councils now face a further funding gap of £7.8 billion by 2025 just to keep services ‘standing still’ and meeting additional demand. Even Lord Gary Porter, the Conservative Chair of the Local Government Association, has said ‘Councils can no longer be expected to run our vital local services on a shoestring’
Austerity has been a disaster for our country – and the Tories have handed local councils the biggest cuts of all
• Tory cuts mean councils have lost 60p out of every £1 that the last Labour Government was spending on local government in 2010. By 2020, local authorities will have faced cuts to core funding of nearly £16 billion over the preceding decade
• Cuts to councils have been strikingly uneven in their distribution - the poorest local authorities (which tend to be Labour-run) have had their spending cut by £228 per person since 2010, but the richest councils have had their spending cut by only £44
• In 2013, the responsibility for delivering public health services was transferred to councils, but while NHS funding will increase, funding for public health will be reduced by around £531 million (over 14%)
• Council tax support schemes are no longer fully funded, with £1.7 billion (nearly half of the original funding) removed between 2013 and 2020. More than 573,000 low income households no longer receive any council tax support.
Labour councillors and councils are improving people’s lives every day. The work we do is municipal socialism in action. Labour councillors have been at the frontline of the fight against Tory cuts since austerity began
Austerity has forced Labour councillors to make hellish choices - but we have listened to communities and worked to stretch every pound left available. Labour councillors have organised protests, attended marches, and spoken out against Tory cuts every year since 2010
It doesn’t have to be like this – ‘On Day One’, a radical manifesto for local government from the LGA Labour Group, set out the case for significant re-investment in local government by the next Labour government.
Now all Labour councillors are coming together to demand that Prime Minister Theresa May and Chancellor Philip Hammond immediately reverse the £1.3bn cut to next year’s council budgets, make an emergency £4bn investment in services to protect vulnerable children and adults, and pledge to use the Spending Review to restore council funding to 2010 levels.
If you’re a Labour Councillor then show your support for the Breaking Point campaign by signing the petition today
Councils At Breaking Point
A campaign run by Labour Councillors Fighting Austerity and the LGA Labour Group