Frustrations and changed perspectives

A number of frustrations recently at ward level, not particularly visible unless you look.
A diminished ability to mitigate the conduct of some who are behaving badly.
More instances of people not having enough money.
Private landlords taking the breaks but not looking after their properties.
Aspirations to keep kids together lost as schools are atomised and alternative specialist provision introduced.
Opportunities of work for local people diminished by the use of agencies to employ people on minimum wages from elsewhere, and the use of low hours contracts makes people’s ability to earn to plan their family lives properly harder still.
Now made even worse by primary schools becoming more reticent to allow for such complexities, including for those parents who cos of shortages of school places have their kids at different schools.

So you can kinda understand how people who cannot get the right housing for their families (esp. council housing which is at an incredible premium), cannot get the right jobs for the proper income to sustain their families, and cannot get places at the nearest schools, might regard more immigration as a further challenge that they don’t need.
The challenges can be met, but we needed a change in May to get it started.
Meanwhile, local authority leaders have pointed out how the government allocating refugees to areas through a private company has caused problems.

Syrian 3 year old body carried away b0245hAnd then something happens to change perspectives.
The publication of photo of a 3 year old Syrian boy, washed up on a beach, head down in the waters edge, but face turned, is so shocking, that I’ve not used it here.
So shocking that the tabloids (whose front pages for days have been dedicated to highlighting the burden refugees represent) have changed tack and joined in with the new scream for something to be done.
Daily Mail critique a0600h 11986341_10156003912075158_5043347414092323214_nIncluding a petition at a local chip shop and a letter to me as a councillor, even though this is a matter for the MPs.

David Miliband was on ITN news on Thursday to say more should be done.
To mirror Germany’s efforts, Britain should take 25,000, he suggested.
But we don’t have Germany’s confidence, or governance.
(John Cleese on TV recently was much ruder – ‘Britain just isn’t a serious country anymore’.)

Another perspective might be – what would your neighbourhood’s share be?
Trickier than you might imagine, cos Britain doesn’t even know how to count its population anymore – even though IBM started by creating the counting machines to make such a task possible.
So share 25,000 across the country evenly and a city the size of Nottingham might be expected to support 122 (314,528/64,511,000 or 0.49%), and the Bridge ward (the city centre within the old boundaries and The Meadows; 14,669) might be expected to support 6.
6. Six.
Well within the variations you just get anyway.
Easily met with the empty properties we have – many empty cos properties are used as investments rather than homes.

That we get so daunted may be a sign of heartlessness, but maybe more our inability to do what the country used to be able to do, and be confident about doing.
We are times, that useless.

cartoon extract a0426hP.S. A surprise to find out a five year long drought was a significant factor in destabilising Syria. Transpires the drought and consequent lack of food and work drove people into the cities, creating new tensions.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s