Saturday 12 December 2015

What will McDonnell say about Brent Council cuts on Sunday?

From the current Kilburn Times

On Sunday at 1pm  John McDonnell MP, the anti-austerity Shadow Chancellor, will hold a street meeting at the Jubilee Clock in Harlesden with Labour councillors and activists before they go off to canvas for the Labour candidate in the Kensal Green by-election. (Kensal Green ward covers a large part of Harlesden)

On Monday at 7pm Brent's Labour Cabinet will be setting in motion consultation on the latest round of cuts and increased charges and fees as they implement the Conservative's austerity agenda.

Rather than challenging the cuts agenda they will be operating a bidding war where supporters of different services compete with each other for survival - rather than unity against the Tories attack on local government this will be divisive. According to Michael Pavey's comment it could be those with the loudest voice who will win out : 'If the public is up in arms about any one of these issues we will talk it through and if necessary we will change it.' On the surface this sounds reasonable but leaves those who are most vulnerable and lack a voice at a disadvantage.

There appears to be little appetite for a change of policy in the Labour Group. There are only one or two who have lined up with the recently formed Brent Momentum  LINK while others have joined the anti-Corbyn Labour International. Brent Momentum is urging its members to attend Sunday's event and canvas for the Labour candidate but the effect will be to elect a 55th Labour councillor (out of a total council of 63) who will vote for cuts. If he wins they will hail this as a victory for Corbyn's Labour - all rather contradictory.

This is why the election of Jafar Hassan as a single Green councillor pledged to oppose cuts and hold the dominant Labour group to account would be a much better outcome in Kensal Green.


Anonymous said...

While not taking sides over who the people of Kensal Green Ward should vote for, as a campaigner for high standards of conduct at Brent Council I have to say that the Brent Labour position over austerity or anti-austerity does suggest Double Standards.

Philip Grant.

Anonymous said...

Difficult not to notice the similarity in your pictures between The Leader and Mr Hassan. This is not a case of Benn Snr and Benn Jnr in reverse, is it?

Mike Hine