Jillian Creasy spoke at the Rally for Occupy Sheffield, speaking out for Surestart, she said that “Women must fight the cuts!” The full text of her speech follows.
Rampant capitalism is ripping apart the fabric of society, destroying people and planet. Dave & Ed say they want “responsible capitalism”. I want “emasculated capitalism”. “Emasculate” means “castrate, effeminate” – that’s exactly what I mean!
The Coalition cuts, now supported by Labour, will affect women worst. I want to speak up for women – as paid & unpaid workers, as mothers, as elders.
- Paid workers
- – 2/3rd public sector workers are women – will be affected by the pay freeze.
- 50,000 of these (mostly women) earn less then £15k pa.
- Even these lowest paid will have to payer higher pension contributions.
- And in the private sector, ¾ women are not in a pension scheme at all.
- Unpaid workers
- 1 in 4 women in their 50s are caring for an elderly parent, saving the taxpayer and reducing their own earnings and pensions.
- Carers support services and advice services are being slashed: SCC is about to cut another 5% from the grants to voluntary groups; and if legal aid is cut, advice centres will be further harmed.
- The greatest unpaid job of all.
- Women no longer get Income Support if their children are less than 12 years old, and this will drop even further to 7 years old. They have to sign on for JSA (job seekers allowance).
- Surestart is under attack – less support for the most needy children and families.
- Sharrow Surestart
- 15% cuts last year, facing another 10% next year, have cut play and stay sessions, bilingual outreach workers.
- Women live longer and have most to lose from cuts to adult social care.
- SCC will cut the adult social care budget by £15m, 2 old people’s homes are under threat, elderly and disabled people facing higher charges.
- Scandal of Southern Cross where care homes were used as pawn in money market.
- But women are fighting back
- The 30th November strike & rallies re public sector pensions & cuts – women were out in force.
- RCN (Royal College of Nursing) and RCGP (Royal College of GPs) (female chair, Clare Gerada) have called for Health and Social Care Bill to be withdrawn, spelling out that it is intended to privatise the NHS.
- Justice for All are fighting the cuts to legal aid and advice centres
- excellent conference in Sheffield yesterday (20th Jan)
- (female) advice centre managers from across the north of England, lobbying the cabinet office and ministers.
- Sharrow Surestart is reaching out to local people to fight the cuts and fill the gaps.
- Disability Rights movement is growing in strength, locally disabled people are challenging the cuts to adult care services.
- Unions are collecting signatures to stop the closure of care homes.
So, take heart, and let’s emasculate capitalism!