Fears over Liverpool Waters jobs

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Liverpool in Work protested at the council budget meeting

Liverpool in Work protested at the council budget meeting

A jobs boost from the Liverpool Waters scheme could bypass the people who need them most due to public spending cuts, according to a government-funded work liaison programme.

Liverpool in Work say that cutting its services, which connects unemployed workers in the city to jobs, leaves it in danger of losing up to half of its budget and unable to place those in need into the 20,000 slots created by the Peel Holdings’ £5.5bn plan.

Paul Amman, a steward for Liverpool in Work, formerly JET, said: “Liverpool Waters and all the investment in the world will mean nothing if the poorest in our communities can’t get jobs.

“The fact is that at the moment we’ve got 50% cuts happening to Liverpool in Work; the advice and guidance staff are being slashed.”

Mr Amman joined hundreds of protesters at the Town Hall last week to try to influence Liverpool City Council’s budget plans for the 2013-14 period, which include having to deal with a £32 million public spending reduction.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MJQcRab3fT0

Mr Amman, a member of Unison, the country’s biggest trade union, explained why it was vital to make his group’s voice known: “It’s important that we make a stand to say to councillors that unless we save services like Liverpool in Work we will not be able to get the jobs into the community that need it most.”

A spokesman from the Joint Trade Union Committee addressed the council at the Town Hall to express dismay at the latest round of cuts.

Unison 2

Unison protest in Liverpool

John Gibbons of JTUC said: “The cuts can no longer be described as efficiency savings. Like many northern cities Liverpool suffers from great levels of poverty and deprivation which need to be addressed by investment programmes and infrastructure projects.

“Instead we’re seeing cuts that are deepening the recession and will eventually leave many families and vulnerable people suffering from Victorian levels of hardship.

“Whilst JTUC cannot and will not stay silent on the need to maintain the fight for jobs and services, it is our view that we will continue to work with the democratically elected council and mayor of this city, unlike the rabble that stole into power, to protect the jobs and services that Liverpool not only deserve but need.”

The fresh concerns come at a time when Mayor Joe Anderson’s budget plan was passed by the council, which included plans to raise council tax by 1.8%, close libraries and cut funding for public golf courses.

About Sam McDonnell, JMU Journalism