04 January 2011

Hammersmith council confirms plans to slash Sure Start by £3.2m, spend £600,000 on redundancies

Hammersmith and Fulham Tory council has confirmed it will be cutting funding to most local Sure Start centres for children and families.

While attempting to rebut a report in The Mirror that the council was “withdrawing funding from nine out of the 15 drop-in centres for under-fives”, HF Conservative News (hat tip Shepherds Bush Blogspot) has actually confirmed the cuts by drawing attention to an internal Council document from Councillor Helen Binmore, responsible for children’s services.

The Sure Start budget is being slashed by a massive £3.2 million (opening para) and there will also be £600,000 worth of redundancies (para 3.8.2). 

Families are in the front line of the many cuts that Tory Hammersmith council is cooking up. To try and deny it is shameful.

But who’s to blame? Partly the coalition, of course, for cutting “over £4.2m of external grants in the spending review for early intervention services” (para 3.1).

Yet the local Tories’ own PR-driven desire to knock pennies off the council tax each year is clearly just as much at fault: “In addition we need to make over £4m of efficiencies to meet the council budget requirements” (para 3.1).

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