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Why not to privatise council services: Barnet council (and others…)

Here's one for anyone concerned about privatisation, or who wants to know more about the reasons why people worry about outsourcing public services to the private sector:

Residents in Barnet have made this short animation to explain the risks associated with Barnet council's plans to go ahead with a massive one-billion pound outsourcing deal.

 

 

For several years now, Barnet residents, bloggers and unions have been fighting the council's plans to mass privatise council services (a plan called One Barnet). Already, they've won a fight to keep the council’s waste and recycling services in-house.

The council is in turmoil over the plans. Council CE Nick Walkley recently resigned - only a couple of months before the mass-outsourcing decision was due to be made. The massive public unpopularity of Barnet council's plans has been well-documented.

Tonight (Thursday 8 November at 7pm at the Greek Cypriot Centre, Britannia Road, London N12 9RU) Barnet residents will hold a ‘Question Time’ debate about the proposed One Barnet programme. On the panel will be Barnet resident and chair, Barbara Jacobson, Barnet Conservative Council Leader, Richard Cornelius, Labour Leader, Alison Moore, Lib Dem Leader Jack Cohen and Andy Mudd from the Association for Public Service Excellence.

The panel will discuss the implications and potential risks associated with the outsourcing of a billion pounds' worth of services.

Big privatisation plans are causing council meltdowns in other parts of the country as well - in Cornwall, as the Guardian's Patrick Butler reports here, the council leader was recently "acrimoniously ousted" over a £300m plan to part-privatise services including libraries, benefits and payroll to either BT or CSC, the US IT services giant.

Could these be turning points for people who are fighting to keep publicly-provided council services?

Vote in our Fishiest Outsourcing Firms competition

Some companies taking over public services have a dismal performance record, while others have avoided tax, given suspiciously large political donations or even helped to write the policies from which they will profit. Vote in our contest to decide which one is worst.

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