Reposted from Save Our Services group on Facebook:

Robin Sivapalan
January 27, 2011 at 11:27pm
Subject: stop the cuts
Hi everyone,

Most of you will probably have heard by now the extent of the cuts that the council leadership plan to make in February: 9 libraries, almost half the public toilets, youth centres, the Ryde Waterside Pool, the Carnival learning centre, Wightbus, tourist information centres, more cuts to social care for the vulnerable – the list goes on. 535 jobs will be lost and another 150 or so through “school reorganisation” in the summer.

These cuts are unprecedented in scale, and come on top of the massive cuts made to adult social care last year, and the running down of other major island facilities over recent years.This can’t go on! Think what kind of place it will be to live in if these services go. With among the highest levels of unemployment here already, we need secure jobs not a vast army of volunteers. People are to work for free, as the government slash benefits?!

Ordinary people have not created either the council shortfall of the national debt. Put simply, it is council mismanagement locally, and the bankers’ greed nationally. The council and the governent think that they can use the recession to dismantle the welfare state and public services, opening everything up for private profit.

An anti-cuts meeting at the Riverside Centre on 12th January set up the Stop the Cuts alliance, to help coordinate campaigning on the island. We don’t accept that any of these services are dispensible. We want an end to overpaid mangagers and consultants and the siphoning of public money to privateers.

We want councillors to vote against this budget. They should represent the people in their areas and set a Needs budget, and defy central government. Councillors must maintainthe jobs and public services that people have paid their taxes for.

What Can you Do:

On Friday 28th Jan, the Council leadership will reveal their final budget plans. On Monday please call County Hall (821000) and make an appointment to see your councillor.

On February 9th, the 7 member Council Cabinet will vote on this budget to send to the full council meeting. There will be a protest from 5pm at County Hall

On 19th Feb, there will be a march and rally in Newport. This really deserves to be as big as any the island has ever seen.

On 23rd Feb, the Full Council meets to vote on the budget. There will be a protest outside County Hall, but hopefully by then we will have secured enough votes against this wrecking-ball budget.

Please call Jackie on 530 378 to pick up leaflets (from Newport) or to find out who is coordinating distribution in your area. We especially need more people to come forward to distribute leaflets in Sandown and Shanklin.

If you want to help in Ryde or pick up leaflet from Ryde if that’s easier then call me, Robin, on 07974 331 053 (or text and I can call you back)