Yes, during a visit to her sons own constituency, Mary Cameron signed a petition against cuts which could see the closure of 44 out of 52 children's
services centres in Oxford. Council workers will be striking in protest, by way of a twenty four hour walkout. The cuts are designed to save eight
million pounds over the course of their effect, but at the cost of one of the most successful early intervention services in the country.
As mentioned in the article (linked below) it really tells you something about austerity politics, when even David Cameron's mother will sign a
petition against it.
Apparently the PM wrote to Oxford council, to express his disappointment at the planned closure of several sites, including elderly service centres,
museums, and libraries, and received an indignant reply from the leader of Oxfords council, who cited the failings of the budget set by central
government as the primary cause of the necessity to close the sites in question.
My personal feelings on all this are as follows.
It is the height of bad form to with one hand remove funding from the budget allowed to local councils, and with the other hand pen a letter which
seeks to complain at the obvious, unavoidable, and entirely predictable effects of those cuts. The entire process of the writing of that letter to
Oxford council, on the part of Mr Cameron, can only have had its origin in two, entirely flawed bits of reasoning. Either our Prime Minister is not
aware that cuts to budgets mean cuts to services, or he believes that issuing a letter will cover a significant quantity of his rear, when it comes to
public opinion or support for his policies.
In any event, the only way to avoid the cuts which are planned, is for our PM to have a word with his friend and partner in crime, Mr George "Noddy"
Osborne, who wrote the budget which necessitated these cuts in the first place. The reality is that our PM and his Chancellor are thick as thieves,
and to be fair, that is what you want in a pair of fellows in their position, unified thinking, resulting in a cohesive set of policies and budgets
which compliment each other. However, the fact that Mr Cameron's own mother signed a petition, and the fact that the PM himself is complaining about
cuts to front line services and public institutions, cuts that HE helped to bring about, suggests to me that the Prime Minister knows exactly what his
activities are doing to people who really matter, the vulnerable, the sick, the poor, the young and the old.
The specific matter of children's services cannot be overstated in its importance. Children who grow up supported by BOTH their families, and society
in general, grow to love both in the main. Being supported at every stage of development, getting the opportunities that come with appropriate levels
of child services that a young person can access, these things are priceless, not just to the individuals that the service is rendered to, but the
whole of society, because individuals who are supported tend to be more likely to flourish, and make something of themselves to the point where they
will give something back later on.
That is the greedy, society serving way to look at it, but let's face it, these services should be in place regardless of outcome. It just so happens
though, that Oxford has had some of the most astoundingly successful child services systems in the country, for some time, and that is something that
central government should have thought about, before reducing the budget of not only Oxfords council, but ALL councils in England and Wales.
And now we know, that even his own mother agrees.
"He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy!"
edit on 11-2-2016 by TrueBrit because: Added linkage.