Midlands youth services rally

On Saturday 12 February dozens of young people from around Birmingham will be joining hundreds of young people from around the country at the national Choose Youth rally in Solihull.

Young people from all over Birmingham are up in arms about proposed cuts to the Birmingham Youth Service. But now they are fighting back.

·         Hundreds of people are signing petitions all around Birmingham to Save Birmingham Youth Service.

·         Dozens of young people are protesting at their Ward Committee and Constituency Committee meetings all around Birmingham.

·         Dozens of young people protested outside Small Heath School and Leisure Centre on Friday 4 February.

·         Over 150 people gathered in Chamberlain Square to protest, sing, dance and speak out on Saturday 5 February.

·         Last Saturday over 750 people signed the petition in Chamberlain Square in 3 hours.

Ben Cochrane from Save Birmingham Youth Service said 'There is massive support out their from young people and the general public for the Birmingham Youth Service.'

'Clubs like The Stonehouse Gang and St. Martins Youth Centre are now in dire straits as Birmingham Youth Service has abandoned them cutting their grant for running costs by 100%.'

Youth worker and union rep Chris Seeley said: 'Young people have told Birmingham City Council “Hands off the Youth Service. Young people have demonstrated for what they value and what they need.'

Ben Cochrane said 'It is common knowledge that to cut services to young people is a false economy. Hundreds of Young people will be rallying in Solihull on Saturday to ask the government and local authorities to take their responsibilities seriously and Choose Youth.'

It came after Birmingham city council announced on Friday the 11th of February that it needs to save 300 million pounds with upto 7 thousand potential job losses.

Council leader Mike Whitby says it's time for change: 'It's an appropriate time to re-analyse how we deliver these services, are they appropriate for the people who receive them and do they actually have the freredom to choose what they need.'

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