MPs' Appeal to Save City Libraries and OAP Services ; JOINT LETTER TO THE CHANCELLOR

By Walker, Jonathan | Birmingham Evening Mail (England), November 17, 2016 | Go to article overview

MPs' Appeal to Save City Libraries and OAP Services ; JOINT LETTER TO THE CHANCELLOR


Walker, Jonathan, Birmingham Evening Mail (England)


BIRMINGHAM MPs have issued a plea to Chancellor Philip Hammond to prevent "catastrophic" cuts to Birmingham's libraries, leisure centres and services for the elderly, ahead of his Autumn Statement on Wednesday.

They say the city's council and NHS services are set to go over budget by Pounds 150 million next year and warn: "Unless the Government acts we now risk the collapse of some basic services next year and in subsequent years."

In a joint letter to Mr Hammond, who is set to deliver his first major financial statement as Chancellor to the House of Commons, Birmingham's nine Labour MPs say: "The consequences of a Pounds 150 million black hole in the city's budget next year are unthinkable.

"Unless the Government acts now, grave damage will be done to the social fabric of Birmingham, and Brummies in need of care and support will be let down."

They said the effect of cuts imposed since 2010 "is to create a shortfall of approximately Pounds 150m in the council and NHS next year, risking the closure of Childrens' Centres, leisure Philip centres, libraries, cutbacks to vital elderly care services, and longer waiting times for vital operations. …

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