Video: "The loss of Sure Start centres has hit families in rural areas," said David Drew MP
Sure Start is a proud Labour legacy with a proven track record of transforming lives, yet it has been allowed to wither on the vine by this Government.
Sure Start centres have now been lost from Stroud with the number of children and family centres reduced from 39 to 16 in Gloucestershire in the last few years.
The Institute for Fiscal Studies, in its significant report published this month has highlighted that austerity has hit Sure Start hard, with budgets falling by two thirds. More than 1,000 centres have closed since 2010. Their report also showed that Sure Start saved the NHS millions of pounds by reducing hospitalisation of children, especially those from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.
I spoke in the debate last week about the IFS report and it’s clear lesson that investment in early intervention saves money and closing Sure Start centres is a false economy.
It has also disproportionately affected rural areas, where families have access to fewer services.