What is austerity for? Is it an economic necessity or an ideological choice? History suggests it is a choice.
In 1945 and saddled with crippling post-war debts, the Attlee government went on to create the NHS, The Welfare State as we know – or knew – it, publicly owned transport and energy services and an education system free to all. And yet now we face a future of economic uncertainty and insecurity where even nurses working long hours sometimes confess to using food banks at the end of the month. Challenged by Andrew Marr over this, our Prime Minister replied that there were many reasons for people using food banks. Too bloody right, Theresa, being skint and unable to feed yourself and your family being but two.
Belper’s own foodbank, Hope for Belper, relies on regular contributions from us to try to limit the number of children going to school hungry and these are often the children of working families who live in fear of the end of each month. And all this in the world’s fifth or sixth richest country. While we can all argue for political change to reverse austerity, it is also our duty to look after our own and if we can be entertained in the process, so much the better.
And so to our latest We Shall Overcome Benefit.
Fronted by the excellent Joe Solo, one of the major successes at last year’s Tolpuddle festival, there will be a stunning night of words and music at The Queens Head, Belper on Friday May 12th.
Admission free but contributions of food and money welcome.
Come along and make a big difference.