We are one of the richest countries on the planet, and there is plenty of money available to fund first-class public services that benefit everyone — whether they be babies or home-bound pensioners, or anyone in-between.
Nevertheless vital life-sustaining services continue to be starved of funds and cast aside, with rape crisis centres providing just one tragic example.
The problem it seems is a democratic deficit; as the major problem facing the tens of millions (of us) is the distinct lack of political will, on the part of our elitist political representatives, to enforce existing tax laws so that we can benefit from the £120 billion or so that the super-rich avoid paying every year.
How can it be that Leicester Rape Crisis, also known as Jasmine House, was told last year that it had “lost the financial support of the city and county councils”? (March 2, Leicester Mercury)
Jasmine House was told that it was to lose its funding despite the fact that the majority of’ its work is undertaken by their 22 volunteer counsellors — whom provide life-saving aid to around 400 women a year. Speaking to BBC Radio Leicester earlier today, Jasmine House’s manager, Lynda Yorke, explained:
“There isn’t another specialised service in Leicester, Leicestershire or Rutland that supports people from historic to recent abuse cases. Previously we were funded direct from our local councils, but now we get a very small amount through the commissioning process. Everything else we have to find ourselves, and it costs around £90,000 a year to run; so we are facing quite a big shortfall at the moment.”
The meagre £20,000 funding the centre presently receive from the West Leicestershire NHS Clinical Commissioning Group is still a drop in the ocean in terms of meeting their ongoing running costs.
Outrageously, politicians continue to slash funding for such vital services — ostensibly because of a global financial crisis that they themselves helped create – and then they force rape crisis centres like Jasmine House to beg for funding from the same banks that wrecked our economy in the first place.
Thus before the NHS commissioning group came to the partial rescue of Jasmine House earlier this year, providing a grant to pay for a worker who supports young victims of rape and sexual assault, we should note that the position had been funded by Lloyds TSB?! (May 18, Mercury) This is a bank whose Tory chairman, Lord Blackwell, is well-known for his longstanding commitment to privatising the NHS through his work as chairman of corporate giant, Interserve plc.