In early December 2016, my colleagues and I on Team Glasgow learned of the deeply disturbing news that half of Glasgow’s Jobcentre were to be closed.
The UK Government is determined to make disproportionate cuts to the people of Glasgow. Indeed, the Tories are using Scotland as guinea pigs for their callous cuts.
We immediately launched a petition, calling on the UK Government to halt any move to close Glasgow’s Jobcentres and carry out a thorough Equality Impact Assessment and go through a full and proper consultation before making any decision on the future of the estate.
On 20th December 2016, I spoke in a Westminster Hall debate about the closure plans, the first parliamentary debate on the issue since the closure announcement.
During the debate, I highlighted that my colleagues and I found out about closure plans two weeks ago – but it seems these plans for Anniesland Jobcentre were in motion nine months before.
On 9th January, I asked the Minister of State for Disabled People, Work and Health how she can ensure people with mental health conditions will continue to receive help needed following the proposed Jobcentre closures in Glasgow. These closures would introduce further barriers for people with mental health conditions who are seeking help into work.
Speaking to those who use this vital service, it is clear just how important the JobCentre in Anniesland is and just how wide an area the facility serves. Those currently using Herschell Street jobcentre in Anniesland are expected to be transferred to Benalder Street, Partick – such an expectation is completely unrealistic.
My colleagues and I will continue the fight to put an end to these needless and disproportionate cuts.