I welcome you to the Chair, Madam Deputy Speaker.
I want to comment on two aspects of local government cuts that will affect the residents I represent in Wirral. I cannot claim to have as much experience of local government as some hon. Members, but I served as a local councillor for four years, which taught me a great deal about the impact that the cuts will have. I would like to bring that experience to the debate. I want to talk about employment in Wirral, our sense of place and the effect of the cuts on our localities.
In Merseyside, the future jobs fund helped 2,800 people find work. The impact of that cannot be underestimated. The employment picture in Merseyside, including Wirral, has historically been fragile. It was important that the Government stepped in during the downturn to help protect our position.
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