Stop the Conservative cuts to our vital public services in Corby and East Northamptonshire

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In October 2017, the Conservative led Northamptonshire County Council published proposals to cut our local services by nearly £10 million. This is on top of the existing cuts we have been subject to for the past seven years and those already planned in the 2018 budget. Furthermore, the proposed cuts are only a third of the cuts the Conservative led County Council intend to make in their 2018 budget; we expect more proposed cuts in December.

Corby and East Northamptonshire will be hit hard by these cuts. Libraries in the five main towns are impacted and many face closure, along with the withdrawal of the mobile library. Our children's centres face cuts of 40% on top of the 35% that has taken place over the past two years; and in the more rural areas of the constituency the bus subsidies will be scrapped.

Libraries are home to many vital services, they are part of the fabric of our communities and we know these cuts will impact those with the least ability to pay. In recent years libraries have provided universal services for children, training courses, birth and deaths registration and so on. They have taken on more than ever before and now they are being threatened with closure. Under one of the proposals, the closure of the Thrapston library would mean the nearest library for the local community is eight miles away in Rushden. Similarly, the closure of Oundle library would mean the nearest library is 10 miles away in Corby. This is way beyond the distance people need to travel in other parts of the country.

Alongside the cuts to our libraries, children's centres such as Pen Green and Woodnewton face cuts of 40%. There is no question that this risks their ability to continue their current offering, and may even risk the very existence of many of these centres. This will damage our children's future.

Bus services are also hit. We know these services are essential for our communities. For children and young people, pensioners and people on isolated estates and rural villages they are often the only way to get out and about, get into town or to the doctor or hospital, or to get shopping home. Cuts to bus subsidies will make some routes fail and lead to them being scrapped.

Northamptonshire County Council should not be making these cuts. They should go to the Conservative Government and demand the funds needed to support our vital services. The whole of Northamptonshire is represented by Conservative MPs, what have they done to get us a fairer funding deal from Government?

It's time our voice was heard.

Bob Scott, Labour County Councillor for Lloyds
Julie Brookfield, Labour County Councillor for Corby West
Mary Butcher, former Labour County Councillor for Danesholme and Oakley
John Farrar, Labour District Councillor for Irthlingborough John Pyel
Beth Miller, former Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Corby and East Northamptonshire
Tom Beattie, Labour Leader of Corby Borough Council
Colleen Cassidy, Labour Borough Councillor for Danesholme

This petition also has the support of the wider Labour group on Corby Borough Council.

Alongside signing this petition, you can provide your own response to the consultation at the following link:

http://www3.northamptonshire.gov.uk/councilservices/council-and-democracy/budgets-and-spending/Pages/draft-budget-2018-19.aspx



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