Government minister complains that councils make the wrong kind of cuts
Housing minister Grant Shapps has a letter in today’s Daily Telegraph complaining that local authorities are drastically cutting back their work on the Supporting People initiative, even though his department have themselves only cut back the grant for this work by 12%(!)
It would be naive indeed to think that it would be possible to more than decimate the funding of local authorities and still maintain such services. If councils are running sacred at the moment it is clearly because the scale of Government cutbacks is so very frightening.
I can’t help feeling that we will see a lot more of these attempts to shift blame as the local elections begin to loom. They should be strongly resisted.
For those who are not familiar with Supporting People, it is a programme that helps around one million vulnerable people at any one time, including approximately:
- 815,000 older people with support needs
- 39,000 single homeless people
- 36,000 people with mental health problems
- 10,000 women at risk of domestic violence
This is a very important programme, and if the Government really wants to defend it then it should restore the planned cuts in its funding