Councillor Eleanor Combley, Leader of the Green Group on Bristol City Council, has urged as many people as possible to get involved and have their say in response to the council’s Your Neighbourhood consultation, launched this week.
“The changes proposed are huge, and will affect many people across the city, and it is important that you let the administration know if you are one of them. Sometimes people feel there is no point in responding, as they think they will not be listened to anyway, but as your local Green councillors we will be working hard to make sure your voice is heard.”
“The context since these cuts were first proposed has changed, and we are now in a much stronger position to oppose the Tory austerity budget that underlies them. There are hints from Number 10 that Theresa May could be retreating from austerity, and we want to see Labour pushing the Tories on this issue, not continuing to implement Tory cuts as they have done in Bristol over the last year. Bristol sent out a clear message last week that they are not content to sit by and have services slashed around them. They put their faith in Labour to stand up against austerity.”
“As Bristol now has a Labour mayor, a Labour majority on the council and 4 Labour MPs representing it, surely there is no excuse for Labour not to do what they were elected for – they should use the momentum they have now to work across the core cities (the 10 largest cities outside of London) and push the government to accept that the cuts to local government funding are completely unachievable, and will have a devastating effect. We will be more than happy to support the administration if they do.”
“As Greens we are passionate about quality of life, and the areas being cut here – support for adults with disabilities, school crossing patrols, libraries, public toilets, and local democracy through the neighbourhood partnerships – all have a big impact on people’s quality of life. There is much talk of enabling community leadership, but we believe that cutting local services and simply expecting over-burdened charities and volunteers to pick up the slack is neither feasible nor fair.”
“We will continue to oppose Tory austerity and to hold Labour to account and would urge the citizens of Bristol to speak up for the services they value.”