Barnet's Conservative councillors have forced through cuts of £458,373 to seven voluntary sector groups delivering early intervention and prevention services to adults needing social care, at a meeting of the Adults & Safeguarding Committee packed with members of the public and representatives of community organisations (23 January).
The services that have been cut include the closure of the mental health service for Barnet Asian women (BAWA), the only Chinese wellbeing service of its kind that exists across the whole of North London (Chinese Mental Health Association), and the peer support brokerage service provided by Inclusion Barnet - a local user-led disabilities charity.
Labour councillors voted against the cuts and criticised the public consultation which was conducted over the busy festive period. They also queried why the consultation had not been communicated in a range of different languages given the disproportionate impact on groups who might have been linguistically excluded from the consultation process.
Cllr Reema Patel, Labour Spokesperson for Adults and Safeguarding said, "The Barnet Conservatives have chosen to ignore claims from a variety of ethnic minority groups that cultural and language requirements would not be met if the services are being cut and we believe that is not acceptable.
1. A copy of the report on early intervention and prevention services can be found here (Agenda Item 10):
For more information contact Cllr Reema Patel: email@example.com
To contact the Barnet Labour Group: 020 8359 2568