Green councillors in Edinburgh have urged the City Council to reflect hard before going ahead with planned cuts to voluntary sector budgets next year.Â
They say that cuts may be a false economy, forcing the closure of projects which provide huge amounts of added value to neighbourhood economies for every pound the Council spends
The call comes after an Evening News expose of a leaked Council budget report which proposed almost Â£900,000 worth of cuts to city voluntary organisations, including some of the best-recognised community projects in Edinburgh.Â The Greens point to research (1) carried out by the City Council itself which shows:
– For every Â£1 invested by the Council in the voluntary sector almost Â£10 is generated.
– On average, voluntary organisations each add Â£1 million to the city economy.
– Almost a quarter of adults in the city take part in voluntary work.
Green councillor, Maggie Chapman, said:
â€œCommunity and voluntary organisations are the lifeblood of many of our neighbourhoods.Â But we need not rely simply on sentimental attachments to them.Â A hard-headed look at the work that voluntary organisations do shows that slashing budgets across the board is economic madness.
â€œThat is why I want the Council to look long and hard at the value for money of proposed cuts before proceeding in a way that we will live to regret.â€?
1. All data from the Edinburgh Voluntary Organisations Council 2007 Manifesto