‘Rally round for workers’ centre’

Manager Jim Hannigan, trustee John King and chairman of trustees Billy Lees have managed to keep Cumbernauld and Kilsyth Unemployed Workers' Centre open with a budget of just �40,000 a year, but now this funding is to be axed
Manager Jim Hannigan, trustee John King and chairman of trustees Billy Lees have managed to keep Cumbernauld and Kilsyth Unemployed Workers' Centre open with a budget of just �40,000 a year, but now this funding is to be axed

Night of music at pub to raise money for under-threat service

Back in November the council’s Infrastructure Committee decided to remove all funding to independent advice services from March and will now only fund Citizens’ Advice Bureaux.

The fundraising event will take place in The Weavers pub, Condorrat, on Saturday from 8.30pm.

A number of bands and local musicians are performing free of charge and a raffle will include the prize of a half day’s free recording courtesy of Carlton Studios. Entry donation is £5, with a reduced charge of £3 for the unemployed and under-employed.

John Miller, Cumbernauld and Kilsyth Trades Council secretary, said: “Since the centre was initiated by the Cumbernauld and Kilsyth Trades Council in 1981 during a period of mass unemployment it has assisted hundreds of thousands of members of this community.

“In 2016 alone gains were made amounting to £1 million for clients.

“The present UK government intend to extend the discredited Universal Credit in this area ironically at the same time as North Lanarkshire Council will close the centre.

“Vulnerable families will face up to five weeks without benefits and expected to live on what they can muster from friends and family, if they are fortunate to be able to do so – others will not have that capacity.

“The withdrawal of the service provided by the centre cannot be replicated by the CAB as this is a straightforward reduction in service to the people of Cumbernauld and Kilsyth and surrounding areas.

“The CAB offers a service working in partnership by referring clients to the centre at present, these plans will destroy that collaborative working.

“The supporters of the Cumbernauld and Kilsyth Unemployed Workers Centre call on the local community to rally round and fight for its retention.

“We call on as many people as possible to attend the event in The Weavers with donations going to the centre, and also to contact their local councillors and call on this decision to be reversed from the proposed budget to be voted on in the next few weeks.”

“The Trades Council is also planning a demonstration at Motherwell Civic Centre on the day that the budget is decided.”