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From The Socialist newspaper, 16 June 2010

Save the Big House

The Big House, in Edwinstowe, North Nottinghamshire, provides short-term respite care for families of autistic young people with behaviour and learning difficulties.

Karen Seymour

The county council wants to close this facility, as a condition survey says it would cost 1.1 million to repair. But the same survey says repairs to the only building used for the service would cost 181,000. The other 966,000 is to mothball an unused building on the same site that has asbestos problems.

The alternatives include contract care, unsuitable for very mentally disabled children, and a place 40 miles away, which could leave some with no choice but to put their children into full-time residential care.

Recently, in a demonstration outside County Hall, campaign group chairman Ian Ward handed over a 5,400-signature petition. Many people signing were disgusted at the county council for even considering the Big House's closure!

The county council head of Children and Young People's Services said the final report will be postponed until the autumn, to study the 'in-depth' review.

On 10 June, this determined group of campaigners featured on a regional news programme. Ian Ward and another parent spoke movingly about their children, the challenges they face and what the closure would mean for them.

No more tragedies

The item cited the case of Alison Davies who, driven to breaking point by caring for her autistic son Ryan, jumped off the Humber Bridge with him in 2006. Far from cutting the provision of respite care, councils should be increasing it to prevent more tragedies like this.

Keep the Big House open and give the people who use it, their carers, families and friends some peace of mind. Follow this campaign on Facebook. Enter 'Don't Close the Big House' in the search box.

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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.

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In The Socialist 16 June 2010:

Millionaire ministers savage public services

'Bloodbath budget' day protests and meetings


Education

Comprehensive education under attack

Opposing 'Dickensian' academy schools in Waltham Forest


National Shop Stewards Network

Come to the NSSN conference

Unison local government conference: Delegates face huge struggles

Northern Rock throws workers on the dole

Wales Unison: Socialist Party member elected

NHS Scotland - ConDemned to terminal decay

Southampton library staff strike to save jobs

Save the Big House


Socialist Party editorial

Labour leadership contest dominated by right wing


Socialist Party news and analysis

TUSC plans for future elections

BP's value plunges as oil spill worsens

Willetts approves tuition fees hike

Bloody Sunday report appears 38 years late

IDS's 'anti-poverty drive' attacks the poorest!

High speed trains and high priced fares

Why we don't back the Queen's pay claim

Fast news

Diary dates


Anti-racism

Tower Hamlets: Jobs, homes and services - not the racist EDL!


International socialist news and analysis

Greece: A test bed for 'austerity' and resistance

Spain: Millions of public sector workers strike over brutal cuts

Portugal: Mobilisation against austerity reaches new level

Socialist Party Scotland launched at packed and inspiring meeting


 

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