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Saturday, 30 January 2010

Cameron and Sure Start

I am very disappointed by Cameron's suggestion about using Sure Start as a way of providing specific help to dysfunctional and deprived families.  No1, how will he define dysfunctional and what exactly is a deprived family.  No2. How does he intend on getting these families through the doors of the Sure Start buildings, which will no longer looked upon as centres of the community, but stigmatised family areas; where the people who can't cope go to? and No 3. why does he want to stop the communities that have developed within these centres from forming, because, as a result of these centres, a lot of the private parent and toddler groups have gone, in the search of better quality resources.

I understand that he is pointing out the obvious that the people who need extra resources, whatever that is, are not getting the support they need.  However, this problem does not stem from the grassroots of society through centres like Sure Start, but it comes from the inequalities of the whole of our system in society, and when I talk about inequalities, I don't just mean monetary.  I mean that unfortunately, England is a deprived society when it comes to children, because, policies don't really consider families and even in general society does not think about the needs of children.  We still foster Victorian attitudes and I believe in order for society to change it requires an overhaul  of how we consider success, in this I agree with Illich.

So Mr Cameron, your policies already show up who you are.  Please do not further deprive the communities of England by withdrawing a resource that is necessary to every family with young children, because Sure Start has helped me and at times it has been a saving grace, its been great to know that I could go somewhere, feel welcomed, not feel stigmatised, get the support I needed and just this knowledge alone helped me in ways that cannot be measured.  No, keep Sure Start if anything, give them more resources to continue a great service.  I suggest a more radical way forward, how about help families with young children, offering them more financial support, that's right I said it, not cuts.  Support people by giving them help.

Even as a Christian, I believe your tax breaks for the married couples is unfair to people who are not married, because there are families who have children and the parents are not married.  Also, the money that will be going to the richer people is money that will be wasted, when it could be spent on those "dysfunctional, deprived families"  What do you think?

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