Socialist Worker

Ringfencing doesn't stop Tories slashing services

Issue No. 2360

The Tories are trying to split up the health service and privatise it. 

But they need to get around their promises not to cut health spending.

So they are moving more and more NHS funding into local government—so it can be cut from there instead.

So there is a pooled health and social care budget of £3.8 billion.

But only £2 billion of this will come through the NHS—so £1.8 billion is now part of local government funding. 

And that just got cut by 10 percent. 

Care homes in particular look set to face some brutal changes because of the cuts.

And for all the talk of no health cuts, the Tories want to ram through £20 billion in “efficiency savings” by 2015.

Education too is ring fenced—but further and higher education aren’t, and both face savage budget cuts.

The Education Services Grant, used by local authorities to improve schools, will be reduced by 

£200 million after 2015.

Osborne also plans to change the way money for schools is distributed to take money away from schools in poorer areas. Of course he announced extra cash for 180 more free schools.

Libraries

Libraries and museums saw a another 6 percent cut in the spending review.

Yet Osborne wants us to remember that Waterloo was won on the playing fields of Eton. 

So he promised that the site of the Battle of Waterloo in Belgium will be restored in time for the 200th anniversary on 18 June 2015.

And the government will spend around £1 million to contribute towards it.

The government also wants to commemorate the anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt, where Henry V beat the French, on 25 October 1415.

It’s not clear how much this will cost.


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Tue 2 Jul 2013, 17:43 BST
Issue No. 2360
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