New union community support centre for Leeds to open

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WHEN: 4.30pm, Wednesday 11 February

WHERE: The Farsley Community Support Centre, 90-92 Old Road, Farsley, LS28 5BN.

Unite, the UK’s largest union, is to open a community centre in which will support the local community.

The new centre will have its grand opening tomorrow (Wednesday 11 February) from 4.30pm where the public and press will be able to meet the volunteers and see what the centre has to offer.

The centre will be open for two days a week (10am-3pm Wednesday and Thursday) offering help and support for individuals and for the community as a whole. The centre will allow people to learn new skills, provide support with welfare problems and support for people looking for work. The centre will also become a hub for the local community to campaign on welfare changes.

With the cruel use of benefit sanctions and the devastating cuts, such as the Bedroom Tax, housing benefit cuts and ATOS to name a few, the centre will introduce Benefit Buddying’, which will offer peer-to-peer support for many of the most vulnerable people who will suffer as a result of these cuts and who have difficulties with benefit claims.

Unite regional secretary Karen Reay said: “This exciting development in Leeds brings Unite into communities helping people who have lost the most from the government’s austerity programme.

“By working with local campaign groups and politicians we can ensure that our members’ voices are heard and that issues that matter to them are top of the local agenda.”

Unite regional community coordinator Joe Rollin said: “I am really pleased that we are opening this centre in Leeds where the local community is in great need of support and this centre will go some way to providing that assistance.

“Our experience of working with local groups and individuals ensures that issues which matter to people are campaigned for. This centre will become a focal point for making those changes.”

Unite has already opened three such centres in the union’s North East Yorkshire and Humberside region – in Barnsley, Durham, and Farsley.

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