Derbyshire Labour has announced that they will be protecting vital services from the government’s cuts to Derbyshire County Council. Housing related support services were earmarked to be cut by £1m this year but the council will use money from business rates and public healthy money to protect the services for a further six months.
The Tory led coalition government has slashed Derbyshire County Council’s budget by £157m. This means the public services Derbyshire relies on such as road maintenance, schools, and care for older and disabled people are all being cut.
However, Labour said they are relieved that they have managed to save one of the most important public programmes from unprecedented government cuts for up to 18 months.
Housing related support provides help for vulnerable Derbyshire people. This includes support for those at risk of homelessness and committing a crime.
Commenting on the announcement, Cllr Clare Neill, the cabinet member for Adult Social Care at Derbyshire County Council said:
“I have listened and talked to the people who use these services and I know how important they are. That is why I’m glad that through good financial management and by working with the organisations that provide the services we are able to provide the services for up to 18 months, in one case.”
However, Cllr Neill went on to warn that unless the government re-thinks its decision to cut the council’s budget by a third, many of the services will be lost.
“The Tory government has slashed our budget by £157m which means unless David Cameron changes his mind many of the services will be cut when the money runs out.
“We may have funded the housing related support services for a bit longer, but the government is forcing the council to cut them by more next year. This means we will only be able secure some level of protection for the most vulnerable.
“The government cuts are an accident waiting to happen. I’m going to campaign with the people who use the service to try and make the government listen. Why should David Cameron give millionaires a tax cut but let Derbyshire people sleep rough?”