Political row erupts over Leeds disabled toilets
The leader of the Conservative Group of Leeds City Council this week urged the authority’s labor administration to take advantage of a new £ 30million government fund to provide disabled toilets in the city, adding that there were now “no more excuses”.
But a senior Labor group official insisted the council paves the way for such facilities to be installed and called the Conservatives’ criticisms “ironic”, given the decade of cutbacks in local council funding. by his government.
The new Changing Places fund allows local authorities to apply for a share of £ 30million which will fund the installation of high-tech disabled toilets in public places.
Leeds Conservative group Councilor Andrew Carter urged the authority to seek funding, accusing them of making “no progress”.
He added: “We asked the council four years ago to offer grants to switch places and that has been in every budget amendment we have proposed since then.
“For reasons that I have never understood, the administration in power has continuously voted against our amendment. This government plan now leaves no excuse and they must commit and apply for this funding.
“The long term goal of the Council should be to have facilities to change places in every community, and to begin with, they should be provided in large parks where they are not already located and also in highly visited parks. like Pudsey Park – the most visited of the mid-sized parks in Leeds.
“These facilities are vital and the administration must now ensure that as many of them as possible are delivered, the city cannot provide them only in Leeds city center – there is still lots to do and it’s the perfect time to start.
Leeds City Council executive member for the welfare of adults and children Councilor Fiona Venner said the council was “absolutely committed” to providing sanitation facilities to Changing Places, adding: “Significant progress has been made made with Leeds climbing to the top of a ranking of local authorities providing them Leeds has 45 Changing Places in total.
Councilor Venner said such facilities were available at the City Museum, Kirkgate Market and Leeds Playhouse, as well as many parks, attractions and recreation centers in the city, and there were plans to add more. ‘others in 2022.
She added: ‘We would like to do more and it is very ironic that the Conservative opposition is criticizing the Labor administration as their government’s cruel austerity measures have disproportionately hit people with disabilities over the past 11 years.
“Insufficient funding for social services; cuts in the budgets of local communities that provide support services; and the heartbreaking impact of welfare reform has seen many people with disabilities and their caregivers struggle to cope with reduced incomes, anxious about what the future might bring them.
“The Labor Council will continue to do everything possible to push for reform of social services, to improve access and facilities for people with disabilities and to provide the best possible services to residents of Leeds.”
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