Star date: 18th January 2013


"…a devastating impact on services for the people of Salford, and particularly the most vulnerable" Steve North, Salford City UNISON

Eccles and Barton Moss Children's Centres to close! No care for `moderate' needs adults! 151 jobs to go! Reductions in speech and language support! Reductions in residential and nursing care! Cuts in support for homelessness! Loss of three ranger posts! Parks and cemeteries to be left open at night!

It goes on and on and on…but no pay cuts for Mayor or Chief Exec or senior officers…

More details here…

Salford Council today announced £16.712million of cuts, on top of £6.725million already budgeted, to bring the total to £23.437million for the year 2013-14.

Childrens Services are to be slashed by over £5million, while Adult Services will take a hit of over £7million in what City Mayor Ian Stewart called "an unparalleled attack on public services.".

Since the ConDem Government has come to power in 2010, Salford will have suffered £100million in cuts. This latest round includes…

 151 job losses – most unspecified
• Closure of Eccles and Barton Moss Children's Centres and the re-location of Mossfield Children's Centre into the new Swinton Gateway
• The Council no longer providing care for vulnerable adults whose needs are ranked as `Moderate' – only for those with `Critical' or `Substantial' needs
• Making adults contribute up to 6% of their care costs
• A reduction in subsidy for the music service MAPAS
• Reductions in speech and language support
• Over £600,000 slashed from home care support services
• Over £2million slashed from children's Outside Placements and fostering
• £850,000 axed from residential care budget pushing vulnerable adults into `care in the community'.
• A `review of day care centres'
• A £345,000 cut in Public Health Support
• Loss of three ranger posts
• Park and cemetery gates will remain unlocked at night
• Increase in taxi licence fees
• Almost £500,00 cut from the Highways budget
• A pay freeze for senior management but no pay cuts for top earners, like Chief Executive, Barbara Spicer

In a prepared statement City Mayor Ian Stewart said the cuts have been forced on Salford Council by the ConDem Government…

"There is no escaping that they will hurt the people of Salford" he said "Vital services are being reduced and jobs are being lost when local people are struggling to make ends meet because of the Coalition's austerity measures. It is awful…"

Reacting, Salford City UNISON Branch Secretary, Steve North said…

"This latest round of proposed cuts, if implemented, will have a devastating impact on services for the people of Salford, and particularly the most vulnerable. Salford Council has been rightly proud in the past that it offers support to people with `Moderate' care needs. The proposal to take that support away will have a profound impact on those who will lose access to care and support. Social Care for vulnerable adults will no longer be something that Salford Council can pride itself on; it will instead be asking family members and carers – people who have other jobs and pressures to consider - to pick up the pieces.

"We are further astonished that the Council intends to close two Sure Start Children's Centres and relocate another" he added "Sure Start was one of the proudest achievements of the last Labour Government – something even I, as a critic of Labour, believe changed the lives of many people, particularly under-privileged children. To take a decision to withdraw that support would be effectively to set fire to your own legacy. Campaigners in Manchester have successfully fought battles against attacks on Sure Start and I am confident that the people of Salford will do the same.

"Over 150 people would lose their jobs if this Budget is implemented, but Senior Officers at the top of the Council are prepared to offer nothing more than a three year pay freeze – a pay freeze that lower-paid workers have already had to endure for the last three years" he explained "Salford UNISON will be doing all we can to campaign against the attacks this Budget represents and want to work with other unions, anti-cuts campaigns, service users and the people of Salford to ensure that the vulnerable people targeted by some of these proposals do not have to endure the consequences.

"We want the Council to do more to challenge the Government and until we see that happening we will continue to react strongly to attacks on our members and the services the people of this city rely upon."

Salford City UNISON added this it was "entirely unacceptable" for Salford Council workers to read about the cuts in this morning's Manchester Evening News before the unions themselves had been informed. In an email to members Steve North wrote…

"We have requested an apology from the Mayor for the fact that this information went out in the press before the trade unions or the staff were made aware. We hope to see that apology today."

Mayor Ian Stewart told the Salford Star that the Manchester Evening News had broken an embargoed press release on the cutsbut the Salford Star never received such a press release. Nor did we get an invite to the Mayor's briefing on the cuts, which we only found out about after complaining to the press office this morning.

We turned up to the Mayor's briefing at which only ourselves and the Manchester Evening News were present. Full inside in depth feature - click here

at 18:48:43 on 22 January 2013
@Insider wrote has probably hit the nail on the head. Salford Councillors are no longer a fair representation of this City. They are puffed up, self important clingons who make a good living off the residents of this City under the old chestnut an "elected representative" & getting very fat off it-dare I say even verging on the obese. Two or three from the same family and you have a nice little earner, add to that their additional allowances, pension plans etc,no wonder they cling on for dear life, moving around jobs when things get a bit sticky (think shameless Warmisham/childrens services-one that should have definitely fallen on his sword after the Jill Baker fiasco). How many of them do actually have a real 9-5 job. Perhaps the Star could investigate?
Fed up of Irwell Riverside ward Councilliors wrote
at 03:55:00 on 22 January 2013
Well said salford pimpernel, fully agree with everything you've said, Redhead also talks about speak to your Councilliors, What Councilliors, they ignore all your phone messages,Never Answer their Emails and you never see them, Labour are going to get their backsides kicked in the local elections, I say "NO" to Labour.
salford pimpernel wrote
at 20:42:04 on 21 January 2013
@ redhead, yes the language at you was a bit strong, but if you look at the comments on this page and past pages on this web site you will see where the problem lies and it is with this council, yes this government is screwing Salford council to the floor, just as 13 years of a labour government did to Tory and Lib-Dems council's, isn't right but it go's on, this government has looked at this labour council's past and present spending of tax payers money and seen them spending money on private businesses i.e £22 million Salford reds, £1 million pa.Lowry centre, £20+ million BBC philharmonic, £13million on fountains, ice rinks,proms in the park,Barbara Spicer etc etc, this council can't go to the government and plead poverty after spending all this money on private businesses, they'd get laughed out of the room (not one of the above money black holes did the tax paying public have any input into them, they was all don behind closed doors out of public view. and also not one of the above has made money for the salford tax payer, only taken out), look at Ian's comments below ,it says it all. on contacting councillors look at other pages on this web site on how Salford labour councillors treat their constituents, and how they go out of there way to avoiding questions from their bosses which is us their constituents, and also remember this labour council is not adverse to a bit of mischief with these cuts, if they cut the philharmonic, Barbara Spicers job £210,000 a year, Salford reds, 2/3 of all councillors etc. no one in Salford would give a toss, but cut funding for the elderly, schools, libraries,public services etc. and it takes away the spot light on how this labour council has screwed it's own City and constituent's and puts the blame on this government, and also remember it was a labour government that put the country nearly 1 trillion in debt by turning a blind eye to what the banks where getting up to, in America in 2008.
Winston Smith wrote
at 14:56:12 on 21 January 2013
To all those who are slagging off the Mayor, may I remind you that in the face of £100million cuts, the worst recession in decades and global financial meltdown, our Mayor valiantly organised a Christmas Card Contest only a few short weeks ago? Hats off to you Mr Mayor, if only ALL politicians knew their limits, the world would be a much better place
redhead wrote
at 14:55:47 on 21 January 2013
To Salford Star and anyone else that wants to profess on my genitalia - I do not own a dick nor do I have one on my head. I was merely pointing out that the tone of the article clearly holds Salford Council responsible for the cuts. This does not warrant "cheap" "offensive" jibes for purely pointing out where these cuts have come from. @Alice (the only comment worth replying to and hasn't resorted to cheap jibes - who happens to be a woman - quelle surprise) I agree, but in what way can Gtr Mch councils resist these cuts. It is well known that the Government have the power to take control of council budgets if resistance is made, whilst making modern matyrs out of Councillors, what would this really achieve? Is it not far better to implement fairly, with a Labour Council, than to leave it up to a Tory Gov - God forbid! For those angry about how the council are dealing with the cuts, speak to your local Councillors, get their feelings on what's going on. It's so easy to sit in front of your PC blaming Salford - get out there and do something about it!
les diables rouges wrote
at 14:54:40 on 21 January 2013
What a thoroughly angry and at times childish set of responses.Even the editor has lost his senses ,calling someone a di@khead !. Ian Stewart and his councilors are sitting ducks on a council with little money.They are dammed if they do and dammed if they don't.Redhead is correct in saying the north is disproportionately affected compared to the south as far as cuts are concerned ,especially if it is a labour run council!.As you are all aware the tory/nast party do this because there voters are in the south and will continue to run down towns and cities in the north.Instead of blaming the council blame the tories for letting the rich prosper whilst attacking the vulnerable!!
Insider wrote
at 18:44:44 on 20 January 2013
No pay cut for Scary spicer. No cut in councillors salaries and allowances. Backhanders to Salford red (u know what I mean City Mayor). Still paying for a ceremonial mayor and posh limo Ian Stewart you are a dsigrace !
Just a Thought wrote
at 16:59:30 on 20 January 2013
Has to ask in the light of the current bombshell and the imminent salford reds takeover...Have the reds payed back any of that money the council gave them to see them through recently? No? More Chance of a Snowman surviving a Tropical Summer IMHO.
at 14:16:11 on 20 January 2013
Ian, you are so right.This bloody government are making cuts, but its down to the last lot that we are in this bloody mess in the first place. Remember the note saying "there is NO money left" If our Labour Council had been a bit more frugal with our money in the first place, we would have some money to fall back on.you would have thought they would have been a bit more careful after the fiasco back in 2000.This council have over the years spend money like a child in a sweet shop and are still doing so. Wages at the top an insult to the residents of this city who are struggling to pay their daily bills.Mayors and mini mayors coming out our backsides.Wouldn't mind if they were earning these disgracefulness amounts of cash, but they are not. We have councillors getting £10.000 a year and their constituents don't even know who they are, they don't hold surgery's don't attend meetings,don't answer emails and don't have a landline.All these way's of communication WE are paying for,but not getting. They can find the money for orchestras,street sculptures,the Lowry,the BBC,grants and handouts to PEEL,Salford Reds. By the way,where is the latest list of over £500 spends that ALL Councils have to make public EVERY MONTH. They make decisions in part two, so no one can challenge these decisions or get to know about them.OPEN AND TRANSPARENT,YES,MY BLOODY DERRIERE.
Michael Felse wrote
at 14:16:05 on 20 January 2013
I am shamed to have been part of creating this Mayoral system. Even more ashamed that all the Councillors in Salford are staying in post, to continue voting in the cuts. It all Councillors resigned and caused a massive bye-election that should grab national news that Salford people will not support the Government cuts. Otherwise these savage cuts have to rest at our locally elected Councillors door step.
salford pimpernel wrote
at 12:27:32 on 20 January 2013
@ Ian. well said.
Salford Star wrote
at 08:52:11 on 20 January 2013
See Fed Up's comments below...There is actually a consultation on the cuts until around the 27th Feb - so you make your views known direct to the council. Details in the follow up article...
Ian wrote
at 05:38:11 on 20 January 2013
@Redhead, yes it's the tossers in Westminster reducing the cash, but it's the tossers at the clownhall in Swinton that are screwing us all over in Salford. The £100m saving needed could have been made by cuts which do not criple the people of Salford, such as Media city, City reds, Halle, Fountains, reducing the number of cllrs, cutting wages for Scary and co, all listed with others totaling £100m in another Star article a few months ago. I suppose you will be one of the D*ckheads knocking on doors for Labour at the next local election, telling people to vote Labour because of what the Tories are doing in Westminster. Why is it that Labour supporters do this totally disregarding local issues, if you care about where you live you will be telling them to vote for anyone but the big 3, then just maybe then will Salford people get cllrs that are prepared to represent them instead of playing follow the leader, like all the dim cllrs with the red rosettes do.
Fed Up of Irwell Riverside Ward Councillors wrote
at 05:37:39 on 20 January 2013
No consultation again from the Clowncil about the cuts, No cuts for Greedy do sod all and dont care at all Spicer, No cuts for Stewart, don't care as long as he robs us, No cuts to Councillors,and their expenses as they've been abducted ( never Seen,Never Here). I will lock my local Cemetary as I care like many other Salfordians for FREE, as long as ..... Spicer,Stewart,mayors assistants, are sacked and NEVER replaced, you're all a disgrace, Get out,Stay out and let the people decide, who do you all think you are...God.... money grabbers, don't care as long you're Rich,Rich,Rich ? Well Done again Salford Star for highlighting the Creeps
politics wrote
at 05:28:31 on 20 January 2013
Children services require cuts. They spend their budgets wrecking decent loving working class families. They dont answer to anyone and do as they please while they enjoy their sad lives. The budget should be spent on supporting people of Salford.
Alice Searle wrote
at 17:18:15 on 19 January 2013
Yes, the directives come from the Government but the way these are interpreted is the responsibility of the Council. We all know by now who to vote for in the next General Election but for now we look to the Council to resist, as much as possible, the aims of the Government. The Government wants as many public services as possible to be taken up by private concerns. This is a Tory philosophy. As long as the Council continue to close these services the Government will achieve its aim. The Council needs to remember why it is in power. It is there to care for the community not lavish money on shiny, status activities. The Unions are fighting for their members in public services but they are being side-lined by the Council, which is nervous because they have 'some punch.' It is also trying to silence the Salford Star which is a voice for the community. The result will be very, very angry protest.
GED wrote
at 17:16:57 on 19 January 2013
I note the list does not include the 75 teachers, admin, cleaners and caretakers bullied and badgered out of their jobs at St Georges high school in Little Hulton by Ass Mayor John Merry, Salford City Council and their mates at the Diocese.
Salford Star wrote
at 11:04:04 on 19 January 2013
See RedHead comment below... Is it RedHead or D*ckhead? Read the headline... OVER £23 MILLION CUTS FOR 2013-14 BRINGS TOTAL TO £100 MILLION SINCE CONDEMS GRABBED POWER. Also this is only the first part of the piece - watch this space
RedHead wrote
at 10:58:55 on 19 January 2013
Disappointing article. No mention that it is the Government who have cut funding to the early intervention grant which has closed our sure start centres, come to think of it, not even a mention of where these cuts have come from. These cuts have come from the worst Government this country has seen, where councils in the North have been disproportionately affected compared to councils in the affluent south. This is what we need to fight! We need to denounce the unfairness of these additional cuts which widen the economic divide between the north and south and not politically point score against a Labour council who have no choice but to implement such vile cuts. Slow hand clap for Salford Star and Steven North!
Former Journo wrote
at 19:33:15 on 18 January 2013
" Mayor Ian Stewart told the Salford Star that the Manchester Evening News had broken an embargoed press release on the cuts ". Lol does Mr Mayor now think he has the power to tell newspapers when to print a story. He really is dim isn't he.
Lucky4us wrote
at 19:33:07 on 18 January 2013
I guess it is lucky for us that the council will be able to cover most of the shortfall with the returns from it's wise investments in the BBC orchestra,Salford reds stadium,pink ice rinks and funfairs and the like. Will any of them stand up now and tell us that the above were good investments?
jeffrey smith wrote
at 19:32:54 on 18 January 2013
there a joke Not interested in anything Apart from filling THERE pockets Get rid quick And what makes me laugh even more We have a scotsman as mayor There comedy gold
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