Thursday, 16 June 2016

Stop Hate Now!

Over the period of the referendum, there has been an increasing tide of racism and unashamed refugee and immigrant blaming.  This would not have happened without the referendum. It’s been open season for any idiot to come out with the schrodinger’s refugee who both stole jobs and claimed benefits.
The BBC have run programmes focussing on how some migrants are working for lower than the minimum wage. When people have highlighted the illegality of the people employing them and their blatant flaunting of the law or the links with human trafficking. The torrent of abuse has been relentless. They include calls for my own deportation. Not sure where to, since I was born in the town I live in.
The local press have run stories of European migrants paying thousands of pounds for advice that they could have got for free, only to have a stream of comments from people saying that they should not be entitled anything and the should simply go back.
When I joined other local people to protest about chief xenophobe and hypocrite Nigel Farage coming to the town I live in, the town I was born and brought up in, I again faced abuse from those from the left, the right and people who badged themselves as coming from faith communities because this was challenging mainstream politics. Friends of mine have had their houses attacked for standing up for the their town not to be invaded by one more racist that wants to halt immigration but also wants the freedom to employ immigrants when he chooses to. Despite my taking this action on my own time, UKIP continue to want to bring my employers into this. That’s nothing new since they distributed leaflets to EVERY household in Kettering where they were standing citing the fact that the council gave money for a discrimination service (my employers) as a waste of council resources.
When talking about the level of racism in the country at the moment, a colleague said that the genie was out of the bottle and it wasn’t easy to put it back.

With the news of Jo Cox’s death, it’s time to say enough is enough and the hate must stop. Regardless of the actual motives of the perpetrator, she died because she stood up for what she believed in and the included challenging hate. The hate has to stop right here, right now.

Friday, 12 February 2016

You've got to do this NOW!

Some numbers are just too big.
Numbers like £77 million are too big.
Then something dreadful happens and the number changes to £84 million. Then if you scope in that £84 million pounds is to be taken out of Northamptonshire County Council services over just 12 months with a plan to outsource of nearly all council services, it simply is too much.
This comes on top of over £226 million cuts since 2010 and further planned cuts over the following four years.
In December 2015, the County Council proposed it budget for the next financial year factoring in £77 million of cuts. Challenging and cutting services deeper than the bone. In January new cuts were announced bringing the total to £84 million. The additional cut has brought about a situation that even in Scrutiny meetings (which are controlled by the same political party as those proposing the cuts) hear from senior officers that there simply isn’t anything more to cut.
I notice that when invited to County Hall staff are no longer allowed to offer tea of coffee to guests and when in meetings convened by the County Council agendas are shared one between three. As idiosyncratic as this may be, it is nothing compared to the really serious questions about the future of the County Council and the services they provide to local people.
It seems like the administration has high hopes for the outsourcing of the functions of the County Council. These were announced in 2014 but no business plans have been shared so really, how is it going to work? An interim Chief Executive of the Well Being Community Interest Company departed in December after six months after fronting a whole series of consultation and business development meetings with a whole range of partners over the County.

The Government have shown some mercy with an additional £1.7 million but juxtaposed the other immense numbers it is simply a drop in the ocean.

Local people have come together with a new campaign called Save Northants Services.

So if you care about local services - Act NOW. 

The budget will be agreed on Thursday at a Cabinet meeting. Make sure you get you voice heard.

Members of the public can request to speak for 3 minutes at the meeting, by contacting Barbel Gale; email: or phone 01604 367730.

Please request the opportunity to speak also ask for a copy of the reports for agenda items 5 and 6, which are not yet published on the website.

Please note that a request to speak to the Cabinet meeting next Thursday has to be submitted before 12.00 noon  next Tuesday (16th).

Save Northants Services is encouraging as many people to register to speak as possible. Please let us know if you submit a request. Thanks