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From The Socialist newspaper, 3 July 2019

Carlisle Labour/Lib Dem coalition cuts care home beds

Carlisle Socialist Party members protest against cust to care home beds, photo by Robert Charlesworth

Carlisle Socialist Party members protest against cust to care home beds, photo by Robert Charlesworth   (Click to enlarge)

Brent Kennedy, Carlisle Socialist Party

A hastily organised protest by Carlisle Socialist Party spoilt a self-congratulatory publicity event by the Labour/Lib Dem coalition running Cumbria county council.

They had invited the media to celebrate the official opening of a new care home without mentioning that it had only 60 beds to replace the 120 beds lost when they closed down three other homes in the city.

Despite us presenting a petition from 1,500 people opposing these cuts to the cabinet two years ago, they didn't inform us of the opening, but we still got our message out on the front page of the local paper and on the regional TV news.

Across the county the coalition has cut the number of residential places for elderly and vulnerable people from 257 to just 120. They have also presented the improved en-suite facilities in the new home as their 'trail-blazing initiative', rather than having to catch up with national standards of the Care Quality Commission.

The responsible cabinet member told us that demand for places had fallen. But families had told us how they had been refused places, and staff at another home told us how it had been deliberately run down to become left "half empty".

The cabinet member also claimed that it didn't matter if capacity was cut because they work in partnership with the private sector - in other words, this is privatisation and outsourcing. The previous portfolio holder was Labour, this replacement is a Lib-Dem, but as she herself said "what difference does it make?"

Instead of telling local people the truth - that these cuts are a consequence of Tory government austerity and mobilising for a general election - they have presented this regression as progress. In effect they are acting as a cover for the Tories, minimising how damaging they are and reducing the chances of electing a Corbyn government which could stop the cuts.

We are now demanding two additional care homes in Carlisle and west Cumbria to restore the previous provision, and for more and better trained, better paid carers for longer home visits.

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In The Socialist 3 July 2019:


Workplace news

Angry Usdaw members strike at Sainsbury's distribution centre over sick pay cut

Sick of your boss? Join a union! Fight for socialism

Construction workers protest in defence of union rights and against anti-worker EU

Socialists in PCS union launch new group to fight general secretary election

Steps forward and missed opportunities at Unite rules conference

London Arriva bus drivers vote for strike action over bullying and workload

Birmingham school strike for safe working environment

Lancashire Stagecoach drivers continue their fight

Birmingham uni workers strike against terms and conditions attacks


What we think

Sinister moves against Corbyn can be beaten by clear socialist policies


News

Same old millionaire Tories - Fight to kick them out

Nationalisation is answer to Southern Water cover up

Gig-economy exploitation doubles

Even social-care bosses say cuts have gone too far

Them & Us

What we saw


Stonewall riots

Stonewall riots' legacy shows need for socialist struggle to win LGBT+ liberation


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Socialist Party secures new offices

Angry Barking residents protest outside sales office

Tamil Solidarity Day: Linking up oppressed people's struggles

Coventry says no to congestion charge

Carlisle Labour/Lib Dem coalition cuts care home beds

Sell the Socialist and take out an e-subscription

Lincoln Uni NUS disaffiliation: a question of on-campus democracy

Stourbridge: Keep our college!


International socialist news and analysis

New opportunity to build working-class fightback after voters punish Erdogan

Irish health workers' anger boils over into strike action


Opinion

The Socialist inbox

TV: Years and Years - Engaging family drama pushes confused, reactionary message


 

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