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Councillor Joe Goldberg, Haringey Borough Council’s portfolio holder for youth services, wants best start for teenagers
The senior councillor in charge of the borough's youth service has said he wants the borough’s teenagers to have the best possible opportunities in life.
Councillor Joe Goldberg, Haringey Borough Council’s cabinet member for youth services, told the Haringey Independent he wants to create a youth service that empowers people to plan, design and commission services which they want and need.
The Seven Sisters ward councillor said: “As a borough one of the crucial things we want to do is to create the best possible start in life for young people and that’s clear from how much we spend.
“The youth budget is the second biggest budget in the council.
“We are determined that people who were born and raised in Tottenham, Muswell Hill and Wood Green should have a brighter future than their parents.”
During a cabinet meeting last week, Cllr Goldberg presented an outline of what the service could look like.
There are five pillars in the proposed plan – schools and education, youth employment, youth centres, outreach and prevention work, and helping young offenders.
The Labour councillor has proposed an annual budget of around £4.5million to create a more targeted service which responds to those with the most need.
However, Cllr Goldberg has been clear that he wants to work with people in their teens and early twenties to make the ideas a reality.
He said: “It is not up to me to decide what young people in the borough need because I would have no idea.
“I want them to come and tell me – this is why we are making such an effort to speak to members of the youth council and youth parliament.
“They will be the first people to see our plans because they are the first people I want to hear from.”
During the interview with the Haringey Independent, the cabinet member denied claims that cuts to the youth budget had anything to do with the riots in Tottenham two years ago.
He said: “The only people who can speak for Tottenham are people from Tottenham and I take real issue when people from Lambeth come and speak for them.
“The cuts had not yet come into effect by the time the riots happened – it’s not like you make a decision in February and the next day the changes happen.
“Besides, if you look at the court records you will see that most people who rioted in Tottenham weren’t from there and that 75 per cent were not young people.”
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