Swindon AdvertiserAusterity plea heading for PM (From Swindon Advertiser)

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Austerity plea heading for PM

Swindon Advertiser: Members of Swindon's People’s Assembly pictured with a petition which they are handing in to David Cameron at No10 next week. Left to right, Kate Linnegar, James Yeowell and Angel Grace Members of Swindon's People’s Assembly pictured with a petition which they are handing in to David Cameron at No10 next week. Left to right, Kate Linnegar, James Yeowell and Angel Grace

CAMPAIGNERS are poised to deliver a petition to Number 10 tomorrow demanding the Prime Minister wake up to what they describe as the disastrous impact of austerity measures on ordinary people.

In December last year, Swindon People’s Assembly was out in force in the town centre asking passers-by to write on a large Christmas card addressed to David Cameron, detailing how successive cuts had affected their lives.

After months of planning the group has been invited to the capital to hand the card to an official at Number 10.

“Initially we thought we would get people’s stories and find out how the cuts were affecting people locally,” said Kate Linnegar, of Swindon People’s Assembly. “But people asked us to take it to David Cameron. It has taken us from January until now to arrange an appointment.

“We have only had 20 per cent of the cuts proposed by the coalition Government. If you consider how hard it is now for people, what is it going to be like if the other 80 per cent are brought in?”

The 52-year-old from Rodbourne added: “One in six adults in Swindon lives close to the edge of their finances. People don’t feel they are going to be looked after. The safety net has been taken away. A lot of people think we can’t make a change. But we need to raise awareness, stand up and say it’s not acceptable.”

Assembly member James Yeowel, 33, of Rodbourne added: “It’s not just people who are unemployed who are affected. People working are on lower wages and they are really having to cut back due to these austerity measures.”

The large card contains 57 points each written by different residents. While some said they feared for the future, others candidly described their life post-recession and their daily struggle to make ends meet.

Fellow campaigner Angel Grace, 42, of West Swindon, who designed the card said: “Most people wrote about how the bedroom tax was unfair and disabled people about how affected they were by losing their benefits.

“The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. Everybody wants to be able to afford things and to live a good life on a normal wage. The cuts have affected how families live. It’s time to help the poor.”

Comments (2)

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10:29am Tue 8 Jul 14

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man says...

I thought I read that welfare spending is still rising, despite the "cuts". Perhaps rather than complaining about how hard done by they are, these people could come up with some alternative suggestions for maintaining an ever increasing welfare state cost while also reducing and eliminating the deficit. (ones that won't bankrupt the country!).

Once the deficit is taken care of careful increases in social spending should be considered but until then ever increasing amounts of our taxes are simply paying interest on debt. That's unsustainable.
I thought I read that welfare spending is still rising, despite the "cuts". Perhaps rather than complaining about how hard done by they are, these people could come up with some alternative suggestions for maintaining an ever increasing welfare state cost while also reducing and eliminating the deficit. (ones that won't bankrupt the country!). Once the deficit is taken care of careful increases in social spending should be considered but until then ever increasing amounts of our taxes are simply paying interest on debt. That's unsustainable. The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man
  • Score: 6

3:27pm Tue 8 Jul 14

house on the hill says...

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man wrote:
I thought I read that welfare spending is still rising, despite the "cuts". Perhaps rather than complaining about how hard done by they are, these people could come up with some alternative suggestions for maintaining an ever increasing welfare state cost while also reducing and eliminating the deficit. (ones that won't bankrupt the country!).

Once the deficit is taken care of careful increases in social spending should be considered but until then ever increasing amounts of our taxes are simply paying interest on debt. That's unsustainable.
Good post. Too many bleating on about "Austerity" without having any sort of alternative that doesn't bankrupt the country. This is clearly an issue which is going to get worse before it gets better with welfare spending still rising and we must find a way of making it affordable and fair.
[quote][p][bold]The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man[/bold] wrote: I thought I read that welfare spending is still rising, despite the "cuts". Perhaps rather than complaining about how hard done by they are, these people could come up with some alternative suggestions for maintaining an ever increasing welfare state cost while also reducing and eliminating the deficit. (ones that won't bankrupt the country!). Once the deficit is taken care of careful increases in social spending should be considered but until then ever increasing amounts of our taxes are simply paying interest on debt. That's unsustainable.[/p][/quote]Good post. Too many bleating on about "Austerity" without having any sort of alternative that doesn't bankrupt the country. This is clearly an issue which is going to get worse before it gets better with welfare spending still rising and we must find a way of making it affordable and fair. house on the hill
  • Score: 4
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