Funding for Families and Sure Start slashed by £75 per child across the North East.

Andy BurnhamNew figures reveal another broken promise - as Cumbria faces cuts of £50 per child.
The funding for services like Sure Start and childcare is being slashed by an average of £75 per child across the North East next year, new figures have revealed.

The House of Commons Library research says that in some areas of the region such as Hartlepool and Middlesbrough, the Tory-led Government’s cut will be £90 per child.

Andy Burnham MP, Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary said:
“The Prime Minister made a personal promise to protect and build on Sure Start. Now we know that these were just hollow words and yet another broken promise to the families of our country.”

The House of Commons Library was asked how much funding would be available next year per child from the Early Intervention Grant, compared to the funding available this year.

Their figures show:

• On average across England, there will be central government funding cuts of £50 per child for ‘early intervention’ services like Sure Start and childcare
• Hartlepool and Middlesbrough Councils face cuts of £90 per child, Sunderland, South Tyneside and Redcar & Cleveland face cuts of £80 per child, Darlington and Newcastle suffer cuts of £70 per child whilst County Durham & North Tyneside see their funding cut by £60 per child. Cumbria County Council is facing a reduction of £50 per child.
• In some wealthier areas including Richmond, Buckinghamshire, Wokingham and Surrey, the cuts will be £30 per child
• Overall, funding for ‘early intervention’ services will be down by 22% next year
Andy Burnham MP continued:


“The areas being hit hardest are the most deprived – it’s is not only unfair, it’s the wrong long-term decision for the country. By cutting too far and too fast and asking children and families to bear the brunt, this Tory-led Government is showing that they have no idea what pressure ordinary families are under.

“Early Intervention services like Sure Start Children’s Centres work with families to improve health, education and life chances. These services will be lost for years and this country will pay the price in terms of unfulfilled potential, poorer economic growth and halting social mobility for generations.”

Editor’s notes
1. David Cameron promised he would protect and build on Sure Start:“Yes, we back Sure Start. It's a disgrace that Gordon Brown has been trying to frighten people about this.
David Cameron, The Independent, 5 May 2010
“I want not just to repeat our commitment to keep Sure Start. But to set out how we will improve Sure Start.”
David Cameron, Supporting Parents speech, 11 January 2010,

2. A recent survey of Children’s Centre managers carried out by the Daycare Trust and 4Children found that in the next 12 months:
• 250 Centres (7%) will close or are expected to close, affecting an estimated 60,000 families.
• 2,000 (56%) will provide a reduced service.
• 3,100 (86%) will have a decreased budget.
• Staff at 1,000 centres (28%) have been issued with ‘at risk of redundancy' notices

3. Families with children are already losing out from the Tory-led government’s tax-benefit changes. This year alone on average, a single-earner couple with children will lose over £1,500 a year as a result of this government’s tax benefit changes implemented in January and April 2011 – more than twice the average loss of a single-earner couple without children.Institute for Fiscal Studies (2011) The IFS Green Budget London: Institute for Fiscal Studies, Figure 12.4 (cash figure equivalents supplied separately by the IFS).