Merseyside Socialist Alternative have been campaigning for the last two weeks in opposition to a raft of cuts proposed by the Labour-controlled Wirral Council, from street stalls, to leafleting campaigns and protests outside the council chambers involving campaigners from across the workers and trade union movement and community.
These cuts, which include drastic cuts and closures of leisure centres, libraries, public toilets and other services which are relied upon by working class communities, will cause serious harm if not beaten back.
The proposed cuts include:
- The closure of the fun pool at Europa Pools Leisure Centre
- The closure of the Woodchurch Leisure Center
- The closure of 16 libraries, 2 golf courses, and all public toilets
- Halving maintenance services to parks and green spaces
- Halving school crossing patrols
- Suspending all council measures for tackling climate change
- Introducing charges for residents parking permits
We have to call these for what they are: destructive, anti-working class measures. But it is no surprise either, as Labour on the Wirral discusses its plans to attack our services and communities, the Parliamentary Labour Party has welcomed the Tory Christian Wakeford with open arms while denying Jeremy Corbyn the whip, further deepening Starmer’s right-wing grip over the party.
Labour’s failure to oppose austerity goes back further than just Keir Starmer. For over a decade now, Labour councils have passed on Tory cuts with barely a whimper of protest, which was unfortunately not often met with an alternative plan to resist cuts by the Corbyn leadership.
If Labour had lent its full support to councils that defied the central government, a powerful movement against local government cuts could have been mounted that would have inflicted critical defeats on the Tories and served to protect working-class communities.
We can see how councillors, backed by the mass mobilisation of working-class people, can resist cuts in the example set by the Militant-led Liverpool City Council in the 1980s.
We can stop cuts to our public services. But we need a fighting campaign to do it. We urge everyone to get involved in forthcoming actions. Follow Wirral Needs Action for more updates on upcoming campaigning against these cuts.
16:30 – 17:30
Rally outside Council Budget Committee meeting
Floral Pavilion, Marine Promenade, New Brighton, Wallasey CH45 2JS