The Conservative-run council in Northumberland has caused outrage after it revealed that it intends to cut a contract with the anti-racist charity Show Racism the Red Card, potentially depriving the charity, which provides workshops for around 25 schools in the area, of the £16,800 contract.
Workers’ unions Unite and Unison, in cooperation with Northumberland Public Services Alliance, are planning a public protest against the move on Wednesday outside the county hall, with a spokesperson for Unite saying it was essential that intolerance and bigotry be challenged in the area.
“The work that Show racism the Red Card undertakes to tackle racism is more relevant than ever, due to the rising levels of intolerance and bigotry in society. It is for these reasons that it is imperative that Northumberland council reverses their misguided decision to cuts the organisations funding.”Unite Spokesperson
Labour councillor Liam Lavery has meanwhile launched a petition against the Tory move, gaining more than 3,800 signatures so far. While Show Racism the Red Card said they were supportive of the moves against the cuts, as a charity they were not involved in setting either up.
The council meanwhile seemed unsympatheic to the protests, stating that the campaign against the move was completely “inappropriate and disproportionate” and their actions were in line with similar moves by other local councils. In a strongly worded statement, a council spokesperson said that they were “appalled” that people should be protesting against their decision.
“We are appalled by the campaign that has been mounted against the council’s completely legitimate decision on this; a decision which is in the interests of all schools and students across Northumberland.”Council Spokesperson
We can only wish Unite and Unison the best of luck with their “appalling” show of democracy this coming Wednesday.