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Posted on 4 July 2018 at 14:26 GMT

Service users and families protest learning disability service cuts

  (Click to enlarge)

Around a hundred service users and carers protested outside Rotherham Town Hall against the council's decision to close its Learning Disability centres.

During what was a lively demonstration most of Rotherham's councillors were lobbied by campaigners in an attempt to save the centres but the Labour-controlled council rubber-stamped the decision that was approved by the cabinet in May. This decision is short-sighted and unfair. It will leave vulnerable people without the care and support that they need.

A number of members of the public asked questions of the cabinet member for adult social care while scores of supporters packed the public galleries with others having to be accommodated in the council chamber and one of the committee rooms.

A campaign is being run by families and carers in a desperate attempt to get Rotherham Council to reverse its decision. The local newspaper's letters pages are regularly full of letters from people who are angry and feel let down by the council. An online petition attracted 1,000 signatures in a day and campaigners are planning a summer of protests. They are giving a voice to those who are often unheard.

M Reed, Rotherham

This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 4 July 2018 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.

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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
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  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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