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Children 'Distraught' Over Closure Plan

Thursday, November 16, 2017

 

PARENTS AND CHILDREN ’DISTRAUGHT’ OVER COUNCIL PLAN TO CLOSE BIRMINGHAM’S LAST NURSERIES, SAYS GMB

Once again the council is increasing pressure on hard working families - and some of the poorest in the borough

Parents have told GMB their children are ‘distraught’ over a council plan to close Birmingham’s last 14 nurseries.

Birmingham City Council has now delayed their scheme to shut down the final remaining city's community day care nurseries – leaving 100s of some of the poorest families in the city with no day care provision.

Parents of children who attend the threatened nurseries have written to GMB describing how their children are ‘distraught’.

One said: ”Young children can be very clingy to the parents and they find it hard to integrate into nursery setting as it is, never mind having to go to another organisation and start afresh.”

The working dad says he now have to quit work to look after his child. [See note 2 for details of parents willing to speak to the press]

GMB demands the council reconsider the union’s plans to save the nurseries by making them self sustainable.

Gill Ogilvie GMB Regional Officer said:

“It is a real outrage that the council is making this proposal endangering a vital service that provides a safe and secure environment for Birmingham’s children.

“Once again the council is increasing pressure on hard working families - and some of the poorest in the borough.

“GMB has fought to keep these nurseries open and protected our members over the years and has put forward several options for the council to consider as part of keeping them open. – including ways to make them sustainable.

“Parents, children and activists need to come together to stop the council from carrying out its hugely devastating plan.

“The council has not yet agreed to the closures, there is still time for them to avert this dangerous, damaging course of action.”

ENDS

Contact: Gill Ogilvie on 07850768351 or GMB Press Office on 07958 156846 or press.office@gmb.org.uk

Notes for editors:

Background

In December 2015 the council had made proposals to close all the nurseries across the city but the GMB lodged a dispute with them which was successful in looking at suitable alternative arrangements.

The city originally had 26 nurseries in 2010 it then closed 12 which left the remaining 14 centres that they planned to close again in 2015.

Due to the GMB dispute this was prevented and discussions surrounding sustainability were the outcome of the 2015 dispute. Section 6 of the childcare Act 2006, places a duty on English local authorities to secure sufficient childcare for working parents.

There are a further 26 standalone nursery schools which could be affected further as a consequence of these initial proposals just at a time when they have been promised secured funding for the next 2 years when the new fixed rate for EEE funded places comes into effect.

[2] Some affected parents are willing to speak to the press. Contact GMB press office.

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