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10 February 2016

Portsmouth: support for anti-austerity stand

Vladimir Bortun

On 28 January Portsmouth TUSC organised a public meeting on how to oppose the city council's cuts by putting forward an alternative no-cuts budget.

Kym Maria from Sisters Uncut spoke focussing on the upcoming 180,000 cuts to domestic violence services in the city, which will mean that from now on only high risk victims will be given direct support in designated day centres.

Socialist Party member Chris Pickett emphasised that the council intends to implement 11 million in cuts (including 100 jobs) despite having 16 million in reserve funds and an extra 2.6 million profit from the Portsmouth International Port! These figures clearly show that there is an alternative to cuts if there is political will for that.

Members of the local Labour and Momentum branches present at the meeting fully agreed with the need for such an alternative. They pledged to try and pass a motion through their organisations to support only those Labour candidates committed to opposing austerity. One of them even said that not only will they agree with TUSC standing candidates against Labour councillors who endorse cuts, but that they will actively support us in the election campaign.