How austerity kills – by David Stuckler and Sanjay Basu

What makes things worse in Manchester, is the so-called Labour controlled Manchester City Council. Which has slashed front-line services, sure-start, youth clubs, libraries and leisure centres whilst blaming it on Government cuts. While spending millions on ego-projects like parades, free concerts, the football museum, a new Irish Heritage centre, glass walkways and the public realm of private developers lands, as examples. They also allowed the walk-in health centres to be closed, Manchester will be turning back to the bad old days of increased gun crime and gang warfare. There was a recent article on Medellin, Colombia once considered the gun-crime capital of the World, on how it has been transformed by investment in public infrastructures:
The Initiative: Proyecto Urbano Integral – Urban Integral Project. 2004
An Integral Urban Project (IUP) is a type of urban intervention that aims to raise levels of quality of life for residents in a specific area. For that reason, IUP concentrates all its resources into a single territory, focusing their efforts and looking achieve results that are reflected in development and transformation of communities, socially and physically. It is specially designed to intervene in areas of the city’s most deprived and marginalized, where the state usually has a high social debt. In essence, the IUP seeks to be a replicable intervention model.
The project constructs safe public spaces to address urban violence and provide areas for social exchange. This initiative addresses the implementation of new public buildings and the improvement of existing schools, medical centers and other services that contribute to social development and the mitigation of poverty. The IUP also addresses the restoration and preservation of the environment to lower the risk of natural disasters and to achieve environmental sustainability. “On a global level the IUP contributes to reduce the worldwide problem of slum formation in urban areas, and aims to achieve the Millennium Development Goals: eradication of extreme poverty and environmental sustainability” said Oscar Santana.


New York Times

May 12, 2013
How Austerity Kills


EARLY last month, a triple suicide was reported in the seaside town of Civitanova Marche, Italy. A married couple, Anna Maria Sopranzi, 68, and Romeo Dionisi, 62, had been struggling to live on her monthly pension of around 500 euros (about $650), and had fallen behind on rent.
Because the Italian government’s austerity budget had raised the retirement age, Mr. Dionisi, a former construction worker, became one of Italy’s esodati (exiled ones) – older workers plunged into poverty without a safety net. On April 5, he and his wife left a note on a neighbor’s car asking for forgiveness, then hanged themselves in a storage closet at home. When Ms. Sopranzi’s brother, Giuseppe Sopranzi, 73, heard the news, he drowned himself in the Adriatic.
The correlation between unemployment and suicide has been observed since the…

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