Glasgow City Council’s plan to close three of the city’s day-centres for people with learning disabilities is shocking and shameful. This cynical disregard for the lives of one of the most disadvantaged sections of our people cannot be tolerated. Yet it follows the Council’s closure and destruction of the Dalmarnock day-centre a few months ago. Why? To create a carpark for visitors to the Commonwealth Games. It is beneath contempt. Those day-centres represent the one place people with learning disabilities have where they are able just to be with friends, and in their own community. Here too is the one place where the families and carers can meet for respite and share in their mutuality. It is the one place where they can see their children and relations laugh, love, learn, and play and talk and listen, and do all those things in the company of fellow human beings who will neither judge nor condemn them. Leave that to Glasgow’s City Council. They have judged this one community and condemned it, and are now in the process of destroying it. It is a brutal assault, the mark not only of the bully but the coward. People with learning disabilities need the rest of us to stand alongside them and their carers, and defend their right to this quality of life. It isn’t much to ask.
James Kelman, Alasdair Gray, Bernard Maclaverty, Liz Lochhead, Tom Leonard