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Opinion: Our social care budget faces £3m cut

PUBLISHED: 08:30 22 February 2020

Council leader Darren Rodwell is angry about the unfair budget cuts facing Barking and Dagenham.

Council leader Darren Rodwell is angry about the unfair budget cuts facing Barking and Dagenham.

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Everything we do as a council costs money, from funding school places to fixing potholes or collecting the bins. Our biggest expense is also the most important.

Out of every £1 we spend, 70p goes towards our social care budget.

Unbelievably, less than 20p out of every £1 of our funding comes from the council tax residents pay. This means we are hugely reliant on government to fund our services.

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The Local Government Association recently produced a model of the government's funding proposes for local councils across England. This showed we stand to lose a whopping £3 million from our social care budget.

This comes after 10 years of austerity. For every £1 of funding we had in 2010, we now only have 33p.

The most unfair part of this is that money from our community, which is among the 10 most deprived in the country, will be moved elsewhere - our neighbours in Havering are set to gain £6.9million and leafy counties like Hampshire and Surrey also gain.

These places need more money. As the population continues to grow older their needs are greater. But it should not be at the expense of places like ours.

Back in Westminster, MPs have decided to spend £4 billion on doing up the Palace of Westminster. Less than a 10th of this, or £300million, would help councils like Barking & Dagenham plug the gap and give our most vulnerable old and young people the dignity they deserve.

You can't keep cutting up the same cake and claim you've made a new one.

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