Article: Aug 9, 2022
The first duty of a government is the safety of its people. But few things are more important to safety than health.
Currently it's dentistry in the news. The BBC found that nine in 10 NHS dental practices across the UK are not accepting new adult patients for treatment under the health service.
But surely health care ought to be in the news every day with the challenges it faces. Long waits to be seen in primary care, all ambulance trusts recently on the highest alert level, over 6 million people are waiting for treatment and emergency department 4 hour waits six times higher than the standard.
Article: Jun 16, 2022By Hugh Ashton
It seems that 35% of Britons in a recent survey agree with the government's policy of sending undocumented visitors to this country to Rwanda. 45% disagree with it.
However, the waters have been muddied by deliberate misinformation and obfuscation by the proposers of this scheme.
First, the basis on which this has been agreed is by a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). A MoU, unlike a treaty, is not subject to oversight and ratification by Parliament. This MoU is something which very few people seem to have actually read. However, it is available for reading here, and it does make for interesting reading.
Article: May 9, 2022
It's been a great result last week for the Lib Dems in England. Nearly two hundred NEW councillors elected. Three NEW councils under the Liberal Democrats' control, bringing the total to sixteen.
Sad that we had no candidate in Tamworth to demonstrate what the swing there to Lib Dems might have been, and of course there were no elections this year in Lichfield or East Staffordshire (wait for next year, though!).
Article: Apr 15, 2022
Lichfield's MP, Michael Fabricant, seems never to have taken note of the advice above. He has made himself, and by extension, the constituency of Lichfield, a laughing-stock throughout the country.
On Twitter and indeed on national broadcast and print media, his attempts to defend the Prime Minister's breaking of the rules have met with disgust and incredulity. Indeed, many people believed that Mr Fabricant was in fact a comedy parody account along the lines of "Sir Michael Take CBE"'s over-the-top praise of Mr Johnson, and were surprised to find that he is indeed a real person and an elected representative, who excuses the Prime Minister on the grounds that key workers such as nurses and teachers were enjoying drinks together after their shifts.
Article: Apr 5, 2022
ESBC waits on Government to tell them how to give the rebate - and to give them the money. Don't hold your breath!
The East Staffordshire Borough Council web site says,
"Following the Government's announcement regarding the £150 Council Tax Energy Rebate, the Council is waiting for further guidance plus the relevant funding to enable payments to be made.............However, until the Government provides full guidance and the necessary funding, the Council will not be in a position to issue any payments. Further details will be published on the Council's website in due course."
18561 pensioners in East Staffordshire left out in the cold as broken triple lock promise creates £400,918 cost of living black holeArticle: Feb 22, 2022
The Liberal Democrats have accused the Conservatives of leaving pensioners in East Staffordshire with a "hole in their pocket" after breaking a manifesto promise to protect the state pension.
In the wake of inflation hitting a thirty year high of 5.5% in January, a typical pensioner in the East Staffs is set to see their income fall by £171.60 this year in real terms. This is a total loss of income o £3,185,068 between 18561 pensioners here due to the Conservative government's decision to break a key manifesto promise and scrap the triple lock on pensions.
Article: Feb 13, 2022
The Liberal Democrats have accused the Government of forgetting victims of fraud in Staffordshire after senior Conservative Ministers overlooked fraud and computer misuse offences when making false claims on falling crime.
There were 6407 fraud and computer misuse offences referred to Staffordshire last year - up 10.6% on the year before. This is the equivalent of 18 cases each day across Staffordshire. These victims are part of the four million people across England and Wales who were duped by fraudsters and online scammers last year.
Article: Jan 29, 2022
This week Helen Morgan, the new MP for North Shropshire, made her maiden speech(1). It's worth listening to. It has a nice mixture of civility (much needed in our public discourse), wit and powerful defence of the rights of individual people to challenge public bodies. It was made in the report stage of the Judicial Review and Courts Bill. In this bill the Government, contrary to the advice of the Law Society(2) and others, seeks to impede the rights of the citizen to hold public bodies to account. Ironic that the Government should be taking away our rights to defend ourselves when many conservative MPs are queuing up to defend the prime minister.
Article: Jan 23, 2022
The latest performance figures for the English Ambulance Trusts were released two weeks ago. For WMAS it is impressive how, despite the extreme difficulty of maintaining an emergency service, response times for Category 1 calls such as cardiac and respiratory arrest have remained almost unchanged compared to their best in 2019.