Earlier I posted 10 reasons to come to the demonstration on Saturday, but there is also a demonstration on Tuesday, whilst the council holds its budget meeting, so here are 10 different reasons why you should be at the Council House Demonstration on Tuesday:
1) £220 million pounds will be cut from the council budget this year, with £320 by 2014/15 – a third of the councils budget.
2) Connexions have had their Erdington office closed, are having their budgets slashed and although the threat of compulsory redundancies has been suspended after union members voted for strike action, the service is still under threat. Connexions provide employment and training advice to 13-19 year olds, and currently visit every secondary school in Birmingham as well as maintining offices in across the city. With the loss of EMA and national youth unemployment at 20%, Connexions is a vital service in this city.
3) Refuse Workers will go on strike again fighting £4,000 pay cuts. Show them that they have the support of the communities that they serve as they take further industrial action
4) Cotteridge Day Centre, which provides a social space for elderly residents of Cotteridge, is facing closure as the council has axed its £68,000 grant
5) Unison council workers decided to hold a ballot for strike action, and Birmingham City Council have since delayed the possible changes in terms and conditions to 26,000 workers. It’s not a total victory, but it shows that resistance works.
6) We have seen a U turn on forests, generated by a petition and protests, so sign our petition and come on Tuesday to join the protest. Resistance works.
7) Councillors can vote against these cuts, and councils can pass illegal budgets. Exactly what would happen then remains to be seen, but even if a council does not win concessions, and has it’s budget setting forced by central government, we won’t be losing anything, and will be protesting in the most forceful way against these cuts
8 ) Having a large and loud demonstrations outside the council meeting will help focus councillors minds as they are considering which way to vote. A full public gallery helps, as does having Councillor Salma Yaqoob present our petition to the council during the meeting.
9) The demonstration goes on until 6pm, so if you’re working or otherwise unable to attend during the day, do come down after work or in the early evening.
10) There are alternatives to cuts. Ok, I know this was one of the reasons to come on Saturday, but it’s so important that it’s worth saying twice. We do not have to accept these cuts, they are not necessary and could be harmful to our economy, and not solve the national deficit problem. Join the fightback, resist, organise and stop the cuts.
Of course, just like Saturday there are more reasons than the 10 (or 20) that we’ve shown you here, these cuts affect everyone, so everyone has a reason to attend. Feel free to tell your story about how the cuts will affect you.
The demonstration gathers at 2pm when the council meeting starts. It will go on until at least 6pm when the meeting is scheduled to finish. Access to the public gallery is usually available from a few hours before the start of the meeting. If you are unable to attend in the afternoon, do come along later in the evening.