Letter from Parliament - Jim Dobbin MP
Date published: 03 May 2011
Our current social and economic climate has led to countless arguments and counter arguments in the media and in the workplace and the home. Many families are experiencing financial hardship for the first time and many of our older readers will remember what life was like before the welfare state, before the NHS, before free education and benefits for the unemployed, sick and disabled.
It seems now we have to stop and think about what sort of society we want to live in and what we need to do to achieve best outcome for ourselves our families and our society.
The Tory led Coalition Government continues to peddle the lies that the public sector is to blame for the financial deficit. In fact the tax payer through the public purse rescued the banks and financial markets from disaster under the last government when public sector balances were in a healthy state. In other words the public sector should be congratulated for giving a lead during the global financial fallout. Every country in Europe has struggled since then and we even see the same situation in the American economy.
Cameron, Osborne and Clegg should accept the reality of the present global economics and stop blaming and punishing the public sector in areas like Health, Police, Teachers and Local Government for the world situation.
Public services are under attack with the most drastic and draconian programme for decades, accompanied by a set of ill conceived reforms which will alter forever the way these services are delivered.
Disguised as the Big Society, David Cameron is pushing the mutual and voluntary sector to deliver services. Of course he knows they do not have the capacity to fill this void and he also knows that the large scale private sector companies like SERCO, Capita and Invensys are poised to step in and make a bid and increase their profits. The cost of delivery will rise sharply and the taxpayer will suffer. If Cameron and Clegg are shrinking the State and cutting public finances they cannot expect non-political organisations like churches , charities and mutuals with a limited amount of money and resources to provide the same services. What will happen to those vulnerable people who depend on the State?
We need to remember the huge social divides of the past and consider what the economy is for. It is surely there to serve society and every citizen in society including the poor and vulnerable. The creation of wealth is only useful if the wealth is used for the common good not to line the pockets of a tiny minority.
Let’s have a bit of honesty from Cameron and Clegg. Our future generations are set to suffer as tuition fees go up to £9000. Vince Cable claimed they would only rise in exceptional circumstances. We now know that at least 70% of all Universities will charge the maximum fee. More bad news for students and taxpayers. Universities are having to charge higher fees because the Government slashed Higher Education funding streams. Student places will also be reduced. David Cameron and Nick Clegg are kicking away the ladders of opportunity for our young people. For the first time the younger generation will have less opportunity than their parents the Coalition Government led by David Cameron is letting the next generation down.
Let’s have some more honesty from Cameron and Clegg.
“We have ring fenced NHS funding” they claimed not so long ago but in truth they are making massive cuts. The Department of Health has told hospitals to make higher savings and we know locally that 1000 jobs in our local NHS Trust have to go. This is replicated across the country. I have requested a meeting with the Pennine Acute Trust on behalf of local MPs to discuss this disastrous situation.
I visited residents of Latrigg Crescent in Middleton to see for myself their terrible living conditions and I have requested a meeting with Riverside Housing Association’s Chief Executive to discuss what can be done.
The local elections and the AV vote takes place this week. The results should be interesting. I shall comment in my next article.
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