London Road in West End, Stoke
London Road in West End, Stoke

Another Pay More, Get Less Council Budget

The Conservative-led City Council has not secured a good settlement for Stoke-on-Trent from the government. We’ve got £13 million less coming to the city than we had in 2016. This means we are now facing​:

  • council tax increases of 5 per cent
  • cuts of £14.4 million to services
  • increased service charges for adult social care and domiciliary care
  • increased rents for council tenants
  • 50 job losses.

At times of crises like this, we need to protect our public services, not run them down with a budget like this. We need greater spending on public services and central government should pay the bill with tax rises on those that can afford them.

Not only are the Council planning to increase council tax, they now want us to pay for parking at Westport Lake and Central Forest Park. It’s unbelievable that they could consider charging us for parking when we are in lockdown and getting our daily exercise in these vital openspaces is more important to our physical and mental health than ever. Thanks to the hundreds of residents who signed the petitions.

Our Labour councillors asked for details on how the budget would affect different households. But there was no information available because the Conservatives hadn’t bothered to find out how the cuts would harm families across the city.

The cuts will axe the Sex, Teenagers and Relationships Team, which provides confidential help, support and advice to young people aged 11 to 17. This is much needed as Stoke-on-Trent still has the 11th worst rate of unplanned pregnancies in England. The cuts will not only leave teenagers unsupported, they will place even more demands on overworked teachers and health visitors​. Please sign the petition started by our friends at GMB to save this service.

​And then there’s the Conservatives’ failure to deal with basic services, such as grit bins, youth activities, mental health services for young people, dealing with fly tipping, cleaning unadopted alleyways and welfare-rights advice.

Labour is ambitious for the people of the city and we want to improve everyday life for families. We also look after the most vulnerable because that’s the right thing to do in a decent society.

These cuts are not due to covid-19. These are Conservative cuts due to their bad management. This budget is not right for families and it’s not right for the city as a whole.

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