It is clear that the combination of cuts in public spending , the changes to benefits and welfare payments and council cuts are combining to have real impact on vulnerable citizens and communities.
The coalition government promised that it would implement it's deficit reduction plan in a way that was fair. The evidence from my ACEVO members working at the front line in disadvantage communities is that damage is being done and the combination of cuts and welfare changes are putting people at risk.
Whatever view you take on the current economic debate on austerity or growth. , surely is cuts are to be made the most vulnerable should be protected. MIND report today that calls to their helpline have doubled since the recession.
So together with nearly 200 of my ACEVO members we have written to the Chancellor to urge him to set up a system for auditing proposals for cuts ; "a fairness panel". The OBR are responsible for reviewing the economic effect of deficit reductions. We need a review of how they will impact on fairness.
See the letter here.
See coverage in The Times and Third Sector.
You might have thought I was a health service mystery shopper at the weekend. I spent most of it either at an animal hospital and the vet or at casualty. Both the Hound and I had eye problems , now sorted glad to say. But how interesting that you can easily get to see a vet. I just walked in on a Saturday! What a contract to getting to see a doctor! They don't work at weekends or in the evening. And on occasion even persuading them to see you immediately is a major task. Why is this? Time that doctors started putting patient convenience first ! But ta least I managed to et some rather nice plants at the Charlbury coffee morning! Now to find time to plant them!