Southwark Labour voted down a budget amendment on Wednesday evening that would have guaranteed protection for services for the vulnerable in the council’s budget.
The Liberal Democrats proposed an amendment that would have reversed a cut in Labour’s 2022-23 budget for special educational needs (SEND) and early years services.
This amendment was funded by using additional government funding given to Southwark Council recently.
Labour councillors, however, voted the amendment down at the annual council budget meeting, saying they would find funding elsewhere but failed to secure any alternative funding before voting for the budget cut.
Commenting, Cllr Humaira Ali, the Southwark Liberal Democrat councillor who proposed the amendment said:
“On behalf of all our residents, I’m very cross that Southwark Labour has cut the budget for some of our most vulnerable young people. Whilst the government is also to blame, Labour have a choice on how they apportion their budget and clearly they are not interested in those families who are struggling to ensure their children are getting all the support they need.”