This Saturday 20, 000 people marched through Edinburgh to protest the proposed government drastic cuts across the public sector. This has already affected me as an artist and has really put the squeeze on us as educational arts events organisors and has some life and death implications for the fire service I serve in. Politics matters.
marching with my colleagues
The French are currently rioting about a proposed extension to the retirement age by 2 years, yet the UK seems prepared to accept changes which could plunge us back to a 1930's style depression.
The proposed cuts will change this country for ever, they will affect the most poor and vulnerable the worst. We have been constantly told throughout the British media for months that we have to accept this, it is inevitable, we are all in it together, we will all have to tighten our belts. Major economical think tanks are telling us that this is simply not true. The country needs investment to provide jobs and get us out of the debt black hole that the previous governments have thrown us into.
a fun day out for all the family
Anyone who works with vulnerable people, the elderly, the sick, children, young people, in the arts, libraries, the emergency services, for the council, etc etc will already be able to tell you what terrible impact the lack of funding is having on real people everyday, we simply cannot afford another 25% if we are to be in any sort of way a caring society. Reform, yes- Cuts NO.
From fire service point of view, house fires are decreasing, but fire fatalities have increased, fire fighter deaths have dramatically increased, response times have increased, this is before the proposed 25% cuts. this is not acceptable. We have a duty to protect our communities, we need training and resources to do this. Its with great pride I marched under the Fire Brigades Union, and FBU's womens section banners.
This March was organised by the Scottish Trades Union Council , there were others up and down the country. It was a fantastic atmosphere with many disparate groups and unions coming together, this is just the start of the protests, we owe it to the next generation to protect the public sector and the values of fairness in UK society.