Unions slam proposed budget cuts for East Sussex County Council

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East Sussex County Council’s proposed budget has set out a further £17 million cuts to services for the residents of East Sussex.

This council has cut £112 million from its budget already since the start of the decade and this new budget is going to result in further reductions to services, more job losses and less support for the most vulnerable throughout the county.

The direct impact of these further cuts is well known to the council as it is all laid out in stark detail in their own impact assessments.

Residents will see an increase in their council tax of 5.99% this year whilst around 200 staff are set to lose their jobs in this financial year.

In a joint statement; Lib Whitfield, GMB Regional Organiser; Phil Clarke, NEU; Ian Thomas, NASUWT; and Lynda Walker, UNISON Branch Secretary, said: “The reduction in funding for supporting local residents and carers will see a direct impact on carers ability to continue in their caring role.

“This is likely to result in increased demand and cost pressure on the Community Care budget, as well as a potential increase in homelessness, including street homelessness, a likely increase in anti-social behaviour and impact on community safety.

“The budget also details cuts to the schools ISEND budget and education which will see a reduction in direct support for schools.
“Some schools will be unprepared to pay for pupil support and the lack of early intervention will see more children and young people excluded and requiring costly specialist provision.

“This will further impact on schools with outcomes for pupils vulnerable to underachievement are likely to decline significantly as they are disproportionately affected by poor provision.

“These cuts are all taking place under a Conservative-led council whose own party in Central Government are responsible for the massive reduction in council budgets.

“These reductions in financing are so great that even the council themselves recently petitioned the Government with the ‘Stand Up for East Sussex Campaign’ in order to ask for more funding.

“Yet in October the leader of the council, Keith Glazier awarded himself a 37% pay increase and now asks the residents and staff of East Sussex to pay the cost of their own Government’s austerity campaign.

“The Trade Unions representing the staff in East Sussex will continue to campaign at a local and national level against these unnecessary and devastating cuts to services and against every job cut in East Sussex.”

Contact: Lib Whitfield 01273 570126 or GMB Press Office 07970 114 762