Shopworkers’ trade union leader Paddy Lillis has welcomed today’s promise to “deliver a renewed Sure Start programme, Sure Start Plus”, announced by Angela Rayner MP, Shadow Education Minister to Labour’s annual conference in Brighton.
Angela Rayner told conference:
“Sure Start changed my life when my own son was born. We know the importance of bonding in the early years. Children who know they are loved go on to flourish. So we will deliver a renewed Sure Start programme, Sure Start Plus. The next Labour government can transform lives as the last transformed mine.”
Paddy Lillis, Usdaw General Secretary says:
“Sure Start was one of Labour’s greatest achievements in government, bringing help and support for parents into the heart of some of Britain’s most deprived areas. So we are delighted to hear that the next Labour Government will reintroduce the service after years of deeply damaging Conservative cuts.
“Work is the best way out of poverty and for parents that means they need the necessary help and support. Sure Start made a major contribution, something the Tories fail to understand. Positive effects on families and home-learning environments, fewer chaotic home lives, with parent-child relationships improved. Mothers using the centres showed improved mental health and children exhibited greater social skills.
“On this, like so many other matters the Conservatives know the cost of everything and the value of nothing. We need the return of a Labour government to improve the life chances of children in the poorest families, continuing the work of the last Labour government.”
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK’s fifth biggest and the fastest growing trade union with over 410,000 members. Membership has increased by more than one-third over the last couple of decades. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemicals and other trades.