Severe cuts threaten public services argues the TUC
A new report commissioned from the Fabian Society by the trade union organisation shows how public spending cuts have undermined service quality by reducing provision and increasing waiting times for critical services.
It also claims future growth will be imperilled by further cuts.
The Fabian Society found that funding cuts to adult care services in England resulted in local authorities being unable to provide care to over half a million fewer adults in 2013 than in 2009.
They also learnt that lower health spending resulted in the number of people waiting for a week or more to see a GP rise by almost 50% between 2012 and 2014.
Spending cuts also resulted, according to the Fabian report, in the number of Sure Start centres falling from 3,631 in April 2010 to 3,019 in June 2014.
The TUC warns the chancellor against making further cuts and outlines a number of ways reduced funding will negatively impact local services in the future.
More years of pay restraint will make recruitment and retention in the public sector very difficult, they argue. There will also be an increase in inequality and poverty levels. And, according to the report, future growth will be undermined.
Entitled Making the case for public spending, the report argues that investing public money will lay the foundation for future growth and prosperity. It highlights that for every £1 spent on infrastructure economic activity is boosted by £2.80.
Commenting on the report’s findings, TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: ‘The report highlights once again the importance of protecting and investing in our public services.’
She continued: ‘This government's fixation with reducing the size of the state is the wrong political choice. Public spending is essential for sustainable long-term growth and for maintaining a cohesive society.
‘A high productivity recovery needs world-class public services, which means local authorities, hospitals and schools need to be properly funded, not run into the ground.’
Download The Case For Public Spending report
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