Wycombe Labour today demands that Bucks County Council restore funding to Bucks Citizen’s Advice Bureau for debt advice.
In September, BCC’s contract with the CABs in Buckinghamshire to provide debt advice came to an end and BCC decided not to renew the contract.
The Chair of the CAB in Buckingham, who is the lead CAB in Bucks for this contract, has written to BCC to express the disappointment of the CABs and to point out the consequences. His letter is attached to this press release.
Cllr Rafiq Raja, the Leader of the Labour Group on Wycombe District Council, said “Last month the Tory Leader of Bucks County Council told us that BCC was projected to overspend this year and BCC would therefore cut all non-essential funding. What he didn’t tell us was the impact these cuts would have.
So let’s look at just one of those cuts – to the debt advice provided by the Citizen’s Advice Bureaux in Bucks including the CAB in Wycombe.
As the CAB’s letter points out, Tory policies are putting more and more people into debt. In response, the Tories are cutting access to free and independent debt advice.
People will therefore stay in debt longer and many will go deeper in debt without this help. It will cause stress, illness and the break- up of many, many families.
This in turn will put more of a strain on other public services such as social services, health and child care which are already over stretched and over budget. It will also have a detrimental impact on the local economy.
We know the Tories believe that public services should be slashed and the market will provide.
But the market will not provide debt advice for our most vulnerable residents – and this cut is both uncaring and poor economics.
Labour and Lib Dem County Councillors are fighting this cut but we have not heard a peep from Tory Councillors.
Unfortunately this is not the story of “A Christmas Carol” and the Tory Scrooges are unlikely to be redeemed by the ghosts of Christmas.
Not surprising you might think because these are their own mean-spirited policies.
However Cllr Wendy Mallen is a Director of Wycombe CAB (according to its website) and you might think she would have something to say about the effect of the cuts to the Wycombe CAB.
But presumably she is following the party line again. “