Suffolk’s children’s centres are vital for hundreds of families, providing valuable services for children and parents.
But at its cabinet meeting in July, the Council planned to cut services at 21 of the remaining 38 centres. Eleven would have their hours cut while the other 10 will shut completely.
The cuts paper was withdrawn because of an ‘error’ in the paperwork. It means we’ve got another month to show our opposition to the plans and convince the council not to close these centres.
A service redesign was first suggested last year but shelved because of the general election and then because of the coronavirus pandemic. Early plans had cuts planned at 22 centres, but consistent pressure from staff and families saved one centre.
UNISON, the union for children’s centre workers, has surveyed staff and found more than four-fifths are opposed to the changes. A massive 81% warn they could have ‘devastating’ consequences for children and families in Suffolk. You can read the report here.
The changes will hit the vulnerable hardest and have a catastrophic impact on rural communities.
From 47 centres in 2015, there will be just 17 full-time children’s centres in Suffolk if the Council’s changes go ahead.
Across the county, councillors will experience cuts on their doorsteps. Please write to your councillor to make your feelings known and ask them to stand up for Suffolk’s families and save our children’s centres.