In Coalition Britain – don’t be a family with children
• As a result of the Government’s tax and benefits policies since May 2010, households are on average £1,127 worse off. But families with children have seen their incomes fall twice as far as the average. Working lone parents are £1,600 worse off a year as a result of changes to tax and benefits. One earner couples with children have lost out by £1,950 a year.

• There are now 720 fewer Sure Start centres across England than in 2010.

• As a result of the Coalition’s squeeze on Local Government finance, 50% of Local Authorities have said they are considering changes to Children’s Centres which could lead to further closures or cuts to opening hours and services within the next 2 years.

• The number of registered childcare places has fallen by 40,349 under David Cameron. If the number of early years childcare places continued to fall at the current rate, there would be 38,000 fewer places by the end of the next parliament. If this were to happen, over 78,000 childcare places would have been lost over the ten year period.

• There are just 872 Early Years trainee teachers were recruited for this academic year, meaning 59 per cent of places on training routes for Early Years teachers went unfilled.

In 2010 David Cameron said he wanted his government to “be the most family friendly Government we’ve ever had in this country”.
Nick Clegg promised – no Sure Start Centres will close.
5 years on – this is the reality – a crisis in childcare.

Labour is today releasing a dossier demonstrating the Tory-led Coalition’s failure on childcare and families’ living standards.
Families quite simply can’t afford five more years of the Tories, five more years of crisis for our children.

But Labour is also highlighting its own commitments – including doubling the number of Sure Start places, by opening the mothballed buildings for use by charities and other providers.

Alex Sobel said:

“David Cameron’s childcare crisis is crippling families with children.
“A squeeze on living standards has accompanied cuts to vital services.
Families with children are now at the forefront of the cost-of-living crisis.
“The Coalition’s failing economic plan prioritises those at the top. Childcare costs are rising while childcare places are plummeting and those with children have seen their wages fall twice as far as the average.

“The LibDem/Tory Coalition has taken Sure Start to the point of no return. There are already 720 fewer Sure Starts serving local communities than there were in 2010, and many of those that remain open are being forced to cut services and opening times. Centres could be left standing idle with families bereft of the support they need.

Here in Leeds NW we’re fortunate to have a Labour Council which has made keeping Sure Start centres open a top priority. But if we get another Tory-led Government, there’ll be five more years of savage cuts to Local Government spending. How long could Leeds Labour Council continue to do that?

That’s why I’m delighted that this week Ed Miliband and Labour are highlighting just how high a priority families with children are for Labour
– starting with his great promise to double the number of Sure Start places.’

If you want to help Alex get elected here in Leeds NW, and contribute to securing a Labour Government – sign up here

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