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More time given over to discussion on future of youth services in Lichfield and Burntwood

A debate on the future of youth services has been extended after criticism from councillors.

Burntwood North’s Labour representative, Cllr Sue Woodward, had been critical of Staffordshire County Council after just 15 minutes was set aside to discuss the issue at a meeting this week.

Cllr Sue Woodward

Cllr Sue Woodward

But the debate will now be extended to one hour.

“It’s a victory – of sorts – for common sense,” Cllr Woodward said. “Let’s hope members listen as well as speak.”

The debate comes as the county council revealed that more than 3,000 residents have shared their views on the future of youth services.

The proposals would see a move away from “traditional, building-based youth centres”, which the council says only one in five young people use.

Cllr Robbie Marshall, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “We want young people across Staffordshire to lead the lives they want, get the most out of school and find a good job.

“The county council is one of a large number of organisations from schools and colleges to sports clubs and voluntary groups, who work with young people to help them get work and life ready.

“Less than a quarter of young people in Staffordshire use a county council-funded youth facility or take part in an activity we pay for and we wanted to find out not only why, but what was important to them, so I am particularly pleased that so many people took the time to take part in the consultation.”

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