Despite wet and windy weather, about sixty protesters and members of the public gathered for the Preston Against Cuts event staged in the Flag Market today.Advertisement
Speaker after speaker emphasised what impact the cut would impact on individuals and what cuts would mean for those in the community.
Cllr Michael Lavallette urged councillors across the country to unite. “If you represent working class people, you have a responsibility,” he said.
The town centre representative warned the cuts being undertaken by the Coalition would lead to the scenes seen recently on the streets of Tunisia.
Lavalette put forward his alternative. In his speech, he said he would clamp down on the tax avoidance and the “£125bn lost in tax evasion every year.” He also suggested hiking taxes on the wealthy, and scrapping Trident. According to the figures he produced, savings worth £35bn could be found.
Barclays boss Bob Diamond and Chancellor George Osborne were subject to personal attacks as Lavalatte said “their lifestyle will not be affected by the fundamental attack on working people.”
The Conservative party slogan; ‘we are all in this together’, was rubbished as a small number of shoppers listened to speeches about what the cuts will mean in Preston.
Valerie Wise, from Preston Domestic Violence Services, said: “The cuts are already starting to impact on Preston Domestic Violence Services because already one of our grants from Lancashire County Council has been cut by a quarter.”
She also said that cutting council budgetsand cutting money given to the voluntary sector would lead to a spike in domestic violence.
Wealthy sections of society were also subject to fierce attacks from Valerie and other speakers at the event.
Sarah Robinson, a local PCS union branch secretary, reckoned that more investment is needed and not a single cut in public sector jobs. “We need more investment because it is not a debt when you got public sector workers, it is an investment. It is an investment in our communities,” she said, adding: “We as public servants are not well paid, but we do a really good job.”
UCLan student president Michael Palmer said: “We are all under threat. I urge all communities in Preston to unite on this issue and together we can stand and make a stronger front”.