AT THE beginning of this year, the Centre for Cities’ – an independent, non partisan research and policy institute committed to improving the economic performance of UK cities- released a publication called Cities Outlook 2010.
It noted that over “the last year the recession has hit cities hard, and put a decade of urban renaissance on hold. Unemployment has risen sharply, particularly among young people. The cities hit hardest have been those with lowest skills, and employment in exposed sectors.”
The report warned that “as the UK moves out of recession, it will face an uneven recovery.” It claimed that some cities – like Brighton – may prosper, whilst others – like Doncaster – could lag well behind.
Cities Outlook 2010 also believed felt that other cities like Stoke, Burnley, Barnsley and Newport would face continuing economic difficulties. It also called upon any future Government to “wake up to the reality that some cities will still feel in the middle of a recession until well after the election. The next Government needs to help these struggling cities fix the basics – like improving schools and public transport so they can attract new business and jobs.”
However, this plea – issued well before the General Election – has fallen on deaf ears. The Con-Dem Government seems intent only on slashing all public services.
This is especially so in Scotland.
According to a report in the Daily Record (31/08/2010) up to 22,000 council jobs may go in the next two years. This is a direct result of spending cuts. Environmental, transport and education services are expected to be hit hardest. And compulsory redundancies haven’t been ruled out.