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Youth vent fury at service cuts

MORE than a 1,000 teenagers and youth workers have vowed to fight a “wipeout” of services for young people.

MORE than a 1,000 teenagers and youth workers have vowed to fight a “wipeout” of services for young people.

Protesters packed into a rally at Solihull’s Renewal Christian Centre, warning of the impact of government spending cuts.

Among them was 12-year-old Nicky Wishart, a boy from David Cameron’s own Witney constituency.

He gave a passionate speech on a youth club he attends which is threatened with closure.

Solihull MP Lorely Burt was among those invited to address the angry crowd.

“It was difficult. I obviously didn’t get into Parliament to cut youth services,” she said afterwards.

“It’s very important that we find a way to maintain these projects and the financial situation isn’t used as an excuse to end them.

“In Solihull, I think the council should be commended for protecting the services that we have.”

Local activist Simeon Bright from Elmdon, was at the rally and said the anger was “tangible”.

While the borough hasn’t seen the sort of outcry as other areas, over £4m is due to be slashed from the borough’s children and young people’s budget.

Trade union Unite organised Saturday’s rally, claiming cuts would put volunteer projects at risk.

Doug Nicholls, Unite’s national officer for youth workers, said the campaign was constantly gathering momentum.

“We have never before faced the wipeout of the service. All previous governments have responded to us and developed it and made it grow.

“These are historic times for us. But it’s tragically historic because of what they are trying to do to us.”

 

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