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Thu 28 June 2012

Lobby of Glasgow City Council to oppose social care cuts through personalisation

Trade unionists, service users, carers, community groups and members of the public will gather in Glasgow today (Thursday) to lobby against damaging social care cuts in the city.

This is Glasgow’s first council meeting since the election and members of the Defend Glasgow Services campaign – a group set up by trade unions, community organisations and community campaigners to fight the cuts – will urge councillors to make personalisation a positive choice, not a cuts agenda.

Brian Smith, of UNISON’s Glasgow City branch, said: “It’s time for our elected officials to listen to what’s really going on across the city, to hear how people are hurting as a result of these cuts, and to be brave enough to change it.

“We support the principle that everyone should have choice and control over their care, but this has to be a real choice, not the only option because all of the services have been cut.”

The DGS campaign is calling on the personalisation process to be halted, for funding to be maintained and for meaningful and genuine consultation with service users to take place.

Mandy McDowall, UNISON’s Regional Organiser for social work, said: “People are concerned and angry about Glasgow Council using personalisation of care services as cover for budget cuts - rather than empowering users and carers.

"UNISON believes that the personalisation and transformation of social care has been introduced without adequate funding, with the focus being on reducing the cost of supporting individuals and reducing the proportion of provision in the public sector and potentially the voluntary sector.

“Glasgow really needs to get things right with personalisation before it rolls it out further.”

Simon MacFarlane, UNISON’s Regional Organiser for the community and voluntary sector, said:  “These cuts are hitting the most vulnerable the hardest and we need to ensure funding for these vital services is maintained.

“The services being provided to people across Glasgow has turned into a postcode lottery and it’s not good enough. We need services that people can rely on and we’re calling for fairness, transparency and an end to social care cuts.”

ENDS

PHOTO/MEDIA OPPORTUNITY

You are invited to send a photographer, reporter and/or crew to attend the lobby which will take place at 12.30pm on Thursday, June 27 in George Square Glasgow. See flyer here

Confirmed speakers at the event include:

  • Idem Lewis, who is himself a service user, and will be speaking on behalf of the Learning Disability Alliance
  • Brian Smith, branch secretary of UNISON’s Glasgow City branch, speaking on behalf of the Defend Glasgow Services campaign
  • Simon MacFarlane, UNISON’s Regional Organiser, speaking on behalf of the community and voluntary sector
  • Mandy McDowall, UNISON’s Regional Organiser, speaking on behalf of social workers
  • Norma Curran, from the Campaign for a Fair Society
  • Claire Cairns, from the Coalition for Carers

For more information please contact:
Brian Smith, branch secretary of UNISON’s Glasgow City branch, on 0141 552 7069
Mandy McDowall, UNISON’s Regional Organiser for social work, on 07903 846 427
Simon MacFarlane, UNISON’s Regional Organiser for community and voluntary sectors, on 07703 194 132

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