“We are committed to fight for peace, equality, justice and socialism in Leicester. Join us”
The Trade Union and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) in Leicester have initiated a meeting to decide on a ‘Leicester People’s Budget’ on Saturday 25 October, 10am-4pm at Bishop Street Methodist Church. Councillor Wayne Naylor, who recently left the Labour Party along with Councillor Barbara Potter in protest at the local Labour party’s inability to fight the cuts, has issued the following call out to all trade unionists, community groups, activists and political organisations to take part in building a credible left alternative to Labour’s ‘austerity light’ policies. The Socialist Workers Party welcome this move and pledge to work as part of TUSC towards the next general election and beyond. All trade unionists and Socialists are urged to attend this important event.
“Up and down the country local government has been passing on Con-Dem cuts to the public sector to meet the Austerity Agenda. In Leicester we’ve seen cuts to homeless shelters, adult care services, meals-on-wheels, community centres, and children’s services to name but a few. The end result of this has been job losses, decreased support for the most vulnerable and an overall decline in the living standards for workers in Leicester. Leicester City Council claims there is no alternative. We intend to show that there is.
The Leicester People’s Budget is a ‘needs-based’ budget. Instead of starting from a bottom-line amount dictated by austerity and making cuts to fit, we propose to begin by determining what services and resources the people of Leicester require, and build a budget based around them. We will then be able to use our democratically decided budget as a legitimate alternative to highlight both Leicester City Council and Westminster’s lack of will to fight for the demands of ordinary people.
This event will take place on Saturday October 25th, 10am-4pm, at Bishop Street Methodist Church. It aims to bring together community groups, trade unionists, service users and providers – the people who know the needs of Leicester best – to put forward their own views on which services the council should provide and how we can cost them. It will also allow people from across the city to meet and discuss with myself and Barbara Potter, of Leicester Independent Councillors Against Cuts (LICAC), about how we can provide a platform for the working people of the city to raise questions and move motions in the council chamber on their behalf.
On the day itself attendees will be able to attend workshops focusing on specific areas, such as children’s services, the city environment or disability/health services for example. The proposals generated by each group will form the starting point for the Leicester People’s Budget.
Going forward, we want the widest possible input into the Leicester People’s Budget. Our city belongs to everyone who lives or works here and our proposals should reflect that. Whilst hosted by TUSC and LICAC, participation in this event does not imply support for any political party, rather it reflects our common interest in fighting the cuts and the need for democratic involvement in the running of our city.”