Workers to bring protest to town
IPSWICH: Trade unionists from across the area are preparing to step up the fight against public service cuts and sell-offs over the next few weeks.
A new campaign “Suffolk coalition for public services” has been set up by trades unionists and they are planning a protest march through the town at the end of the month.
Organiser Roger Mackay said: “The Tory Coalition’s Comprehensive Spending Review has made it absolutely clear that the proposed cuts in the public sector are an attack based on ideology rather than economic need.
“To claim that cutting half a million jobs is good for the country is neither fair nor true.
“Unemployment is an economic drain on the country, but even more devastating for the individuals concerned and their families.
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“Even the Treasury has predicted that the cuts will lead to at least 500,000 public sector job losses and between 600,000 and 700,000 in the private sector over the next four years.
“In Suffolk the projected 28per cent cut could mean 7,500 public sector and 8,500 private sector jobs over the same period.”
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The coalition is planning a protest march on November 27 from Suffolk County Council’s headquarters at Endeavour House through the town centre and on to a rally in front of the Wolsey Theatre.
Mr Mackay said: “There are growing concerns about the impact of the cuts on ordinary people and we want to send a message to local authorities and the government that they should take great care before damaging people’s lives.
“We hope there will be a good turnout for the protest march to get the message across.”
Ipswich North and Central Suffolk Conservative MP Dr Dan Poulter accepted that the changes announced by the Chancellor would cause pain to some people – but said the cuts were not as severe as some had feared.
He said: “I hope that local councils and their workforce will work very hard to ensure services are maintained to those who really need them.
“There will be some pain, but whoever had been in power would have had to make some cuts and those announced by George Osborne are not as deep as those proposed by the previous Labour government.”
Dr Poulter said he was heartened by shadow chancellor Alan Johnson’s appeal that union members should not take part in political strikes to oppose any cuts.
Is it right to protest against the cuts? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org