July saw a month of action in Birmingham against cuts to and privatisation of social care and support services, with SWAN, UNISON Birmingham Branch, Disabled People Against The Cuts (DPAC), Right To Work and Birmingham Against the Cuts coming together to form the Hands Off Our Care and Support Services, Our Benefits and Our Futures campaign to resist vital services being attacked by the Con-Dem council . Birmingham plans to cut over £33 million from adult social care services this year alone. This will rise to £118m by 2014/5, or around one third of the £330m cuts the council plans to make overall. In May 2011, a High Court Judicial Review ruled the social care cuts unlawful as the council had not fully carried out its obligations under disability discrimination legislation.
Campaigners lobbied Birmingham City Council meeting on 5th July to protest about these plans for savage cuts, and to oppose both the privatisation of social work via social enterprises and social work practices and the Government’s attacks on benefits for disabled people. Later in July, there was a public meeting organised by all five sponsoring groups. The organisations are now jointly preparing a detailed pamphlet arguing against this range of threats to services and benefits for disabled people, from council cuts in services, the privatisation of social work, to the cuts in benefits and the new medical assessment process. This will be published later this year.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to take part in the campaign.