• MP Work Experience
    It is important that each MP has served in various sectors of the very services, jobs and people they represent. All I ask is that all MP before taking office has worked in various sections that make up local life. From a Teaching Assistant in a school, to a care home, or in a NHS ward, or small business, working alongside people with various disabilities. The MP working the same hours as the worker to gain essential first hand experiences about the people they are going to represent.
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    Created by Dave Richtor
  • Raising Awareness For The Issue Of Sexualisation Within Childrenswear
    This is an important issue as children need to be protected and it is our job to protect them. We cannot allow retailers to carry on exploiting these children whilst making a profit from destroying their innocence. If parents carry on buying sexualised clothing then retailers will continue to sell it and it will become a vicious cycle. It must be stopped and parents must become aware of the damaging affects sexualised clothing can have on children.
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    Created by Christina Farrugia
    Hackney prides itself on its parks. But the Council’s use of toxic Roundup glyphosate-based herbicides could be posing serious health risks to local people barbecuing, eating and playing there, as well as park employees and council workers. It also threatens a variety of bees and other wildlife. It is being used not only in the parks but all over the Borough, pavements and shouldn't be. It's not only dangerous to humans and animals, it's classified as 'dangerous for the environment' by the EU. It is persistent in soil, harmful to micro organisms and very toxic in fresh water and marine environment. We are exchanging frequent correspondence with our Mayor, Jules Pipe, who tries to assure us that there is no health risk associated with glyphosates. Peer reviewed scientific evidence shows this is not the case, but the Council relies on evidence provided by Monsanto. We must end this corpocracy, which maximises Monsanto's profits, but puts the rest of us in very real danger. The Countess of Mar views this in such serious terms that she recently described it as a Human Rights Issue. The Mayor estimates that the cost of making Hackney pesticide free would be c £500k per annum. Given that there are 246,300 residents in Hackney (as per 2011 Census), this means that the cost per head would be £2.03 on their Council Tax each year. I personally think it is worth that not to be poisoned, don't you? The Mayor also claims that there is no point banning the Council from using Roundup if it is still available in Garden Centres. We plan to lobby local retailers and ask them to stop selling Roundup, but in the meantime, if the Council ban it then at least people can choose whether or not they are exposed to it. At the moment, that exposure is unavoidable! If you agree, please write to the Mayor and tell him so. Write to your MP too. Talk to your local retailer and draw their attention to the dangers of glyphosates and ask them not to stock Roundup. Remember, Roundup is also being used in every park, village and town across the country. No Council wants to be the first to ban it. Send this to your friends. Get them to start a petition where they live. Ban Roundup in Westminster, and you kick out GM too. Meanwhile, we have met with Zac Goldsmith MP and Caroline Lucas MP, to discuss how we can put pressure on other Councils to ban Roundup in other constituencies across London. PAN (Pesticide Action Network) are in the process of drawing up guidelines as to how this could realistically be done, in order to present the Councils with a scientifically proven, viable alternative. We need to act fast as they are planning to start planting GM next Spring (2015). NOTES: 1. Glyphosate spraying schedule in Hackney: http://www.katharinehamnett.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/glyphosate-spraying.pdf 2. http://earthopensource.org/index.php/reports/roundup-and-birth-defects-is-the-public-being-kept-in-the-dark 3. Open letter to the Mayor of Hackney: http://www.katharinehamnett.com/2014/06/open-letter-to-mayor-of-hackney-jules-pipe/ 4. Test results: http://www.katharinehamnett.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/K-Hamnet-May-2014.pdf 5.Presentations from the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) Agroecology meeting that took place on 18 June. They clearly set out the detrimental effects of glyphosate on Human, Animal, Plant and Soil Health: http://sustainablepulse.com/2014/07/02/uk-parliamentary-meeting-brings-dangers-roundup-public-focus/#.U7Ph9o1dVq1
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  • NHS Healthcare: No charge at the point of use
    On 22 May 2014 GP's are to vote on whether to introduce appointment charges (estimated £10 - £25 per visit). If this vote is passed it could mean the end of our NHS, free at the point of use. The NHS is currently being dismantled under the guise of an ineffective system and more consumer choice. Increased GP workload and patient demand driving this issue is largely as a result of government policy, hospital closures and privatisation. GP income has fallen by design and patient charges are not the answer. "How many times are we going to fall into the traps set by our political masters?" asks Gurdave Gill, GP Partner writing on the Pulse Today website. "Patient charges are NOT the answer. User charges deter the sick and poor as much as the 'worried well'. Expensive and bureaucratic to collect, evidence shows patients delay seeking medical advice when user charges are introduced. Delay in diagnosis can cause significant harm. If we know this to be fact, to introduce charges appears to suggest that our incomes are more important than any potential harm to the patients. Is this ethical? "The current crisis in Primary care has been manufactured to create a pressure from GPs for charges. [...] We should be demanding increased resources from Government and not our patients. The NHS returned £5bn underspend to the treasury in the last 3 years. The cost of the purchaser-provider split exceeds £10bn pa yet delivers absolutely no patient gain at roughly the entire cost of primary care! {...] We need to identify the correct target and demand our representative bodies are more effective rather than the incompetence/collusion with Government we have seen in recent past. The minority of pro-privatisation GPs leading the call for charges need to be recognised for what they are. We must not be persuaded by the 'greedy and dims' amongst us.” And how about that consumer choice? Right now we have the best of both, individual private healthcare and tax-payer funded. Both are a form of 'paid for' healthcare, one is paid for by the individual, the other paid for and negotiated collectively. If the asset strip continues we will only have the most expensive poorly-negotiated option open to any of us. That is no choice at all. UPDATE The BMA's current position on this motion as outlined to one of our members, obviously, it would be naive to rest on these laurels: "The BMA's current position is not in favour of charging patients for GP appointments. Introducing charging would undermine the basis of the NHS; that healthcare is free at the point of use, and patients receive care based on their clinical need. A fee charging system could require an expensive bureaucracy to collect money from patients. It is also possible that the charges may deter vulnerable patients from seeing their GP which could lead to delays in treatment. However, there will be a motion debated at the Local Medical Committee (LMC) conference in York later this month. If the motion is carried, this does not mean it will become BMA policy. BMA Policy is decided at our Annual Representative Meeting (ARM) in July [ed- It's actually Sunday 22 - Thursday 26 June 2014] and motions are proposed by individual branch of practice conferences (e.g. GPs, consultants, junior doctors etc) and submitted for debate by geographical divisions. It would require further consideration by the BMA's leadership and the BMA's Annual Representative Meeting in July. It is understandable that GPs are looking at raising these kind of ideas, given the enormous pressure on GP services. Many GP practices are struggling from a combination of rising patient demand and falling funding that ministers have failed to recognise. However, the BMA feels that we don't need a complicated and unfair charging system to be introduced for GP appointments. We need the government to provide the resources to enable GPs to deliver the care that their patients need. I hope this is helpful and that it clarifies the BMA position for you." Links: Facebook page that inspired this petition: https://www.facebook.com/healthcharge Pulse Today - GP leaders to vote on whether to support patient charges for appointments: http://bit.ly/1lrI1gg LMC Conference - Full Agenda: http://bit.ly/fullagenda BMC/GPC: http://bit.ly/bmcandgpc BMC Annual Meeting: http://bma.org.uk/working-for-change/arm-2014-info Wessex LMC: http://bit.ly/aboutWessex
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    Created by Frank Coles
  • Don't interfere with the hours of the Boatyard Inn Bangor, Anglesey
    This is the petition that the Boatyard Inn has been asking its customers to sign: Your Voice Counts! Following the recent notice served by local courts, requesting that The Boatyard Inn alters it’s licensing hours due to public nuisance and child protection issues, we ask you to sign the following petition and Make Your Voice Heard! Here at The Boatyard Inn we pride ourselves on providing efficient, friendly service to every single customer. As you can probably see as you look around our pub, a warm friendly attitude is focal to our success, and we give the utmost respect to our customers. We have hosted numerous charity events, only a couple weeks ago we raised £1000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. We pride ourselves on our true sense of community. If you feel that the Boatyard Inn is a safe, relaxed, comfortable environment for both adults and children; a welcoming, homely pub serving the local clientele and tourists; a hive of community and charity based events, with hardworking staff, please sign and make your voice heard. Thank you, Everyone here at The Boatyard Inn. ########################################## The Boatyard Inn website here: http://www.theboatyardinn.org.uk/ and here: https://www.facebook.com/theboatyardbangor ########################################## You can contact the Council here: Licensing Section Council Offices Llangefni Anglesey LL54 6LE Tel: 01248 752847 E-mail licensing@anglesey.gov.uk
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    Created by Nick Brown Picture
  • Save London's skyline
    The current uncontrolled and incoherent construction of high-rise buildings dominating the London skyline to the detriment of both local areas and the city's general appearance needs to be brought under control. According to the Evening Standard, planning permission has been given for a further 288 high-rises, with who knows how many more to come? A coherent, effective and independent process (including proper consultation with those who will be most affected by the new buildings) that takes into account the visual, social and economic impact on those who have to live and work in their shadows needs to be established, preventing the permanent destruction of the city for the benefit of a few property developers and absentee owners. London desperately needs both affordable and social housing for those of us who work and try to live in the city, but these towers are no answer to that, and instead replace much-loved and familiar streetscapes that can offer the high-density, low-rise accommodation that most people want. Their architecture is all too often either mediocre or the result of famous architects exercising their egos at our expense; in addition to which too many are built and bought by overseas purchasers seeking to secure their wealth in empty properties in London, bringing no tax benefits to the city itself and exacerbating the lack of affordable housing for the rest of us. At the moment great stretches of the Thames are being walled-off by dismal glass towers for the private enjoyment of their occupants (to the extent that they are occupied) and the exclusion of all others. Even the status of Houses of Parliament as a Unesco World Heritage site is threatened by these invasive monsters. Offering £5000 in compensation to people whose houses would be permanently deprived of direct sunlight (as was recently offered by property developers on the Mount Pleasant site) is not only insulting but an admission of the deleterious effect these buildings can have on their neighbours. We need all those, including the millions of tourists who visit us every year, who love the chaotic, multitudinous, living creature that is London, to make known their rejection of these tacky gleaming stakes through its heart.
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    Created by Susan Haskins Picture
  • Ban Outdoor Advertising in Exeter
    To the residents of Exeter, people who work in Exeter and visit Exeter, together with those who love Exeter… In an increasingly commercialised world, people should have the freedom to choose when they are exposed to advertising. In public open spaces we should be free from private and commercial interest and advertising should not be allowed to disfigure our city. We are Citizens not Consumers. Imaging how much more beautiful our city could be if it were not covered up by ugly advertising hoardings. Sao Paulo, Auckland, Bergen, Alaska, Hawaii, Maine, Vermont, and 1,500 towns throughout the world have already banned external advertising. In the UK, Bristol has a campaign to ban outdoor adverts. Plymouth has already banned adverts for pay-day loan companies, whilst Leeds, Newcastle and Bristol are considering it. We should add our wonderful city to the growing movement to reclaim our open spaces. CONSUMER PRESSURE: Excessive advertising encourages us to run ever faster on the treadmill of modern consumer life with damaging consequences. It contributes to growing consumer debt and to the consumption of ever increasing amounts of the earth’s finite resources. Additionally advertising is increasingly sowing the seeds of unhappiness by persuading the consumer to be dissatisfied with what they have got, and so creating an artificial need to buy the next thing. Evidence from the Good Childhood Inquiry indicates that the most vulnerable groups to commercial pressures - children and young people - show higher rates of mental health problems. Removing advertising in public spaces, such as billboards, would free us in our outdoor environment from the pressure to consume and allow us to see previously obscured parts of our city. Any remaining empty spaces can be reclaimed for the purpose of art, poetry and inspiring social campaigns (e.g. volunteering, encouraging recycling). VISUAL POLLUTION: Currently there are laws on air pollution, noise pollution and light pollution - now is the time to take back our city from this visual pollution so that we can be citizens rather than just consumers. There is no doubt that the removal of advertising can change the appearance of our city enormously and allow us to see parts of the city previously hidden to us, opening up new exciting vistas. For more information see – “The Advertising Effect” http://www.compassonline.org.uk/publications/the-advertising-effect-how-do-we-get-the-balance-of-advertising-right/ Joint campaign by Exeter Friends of the Earth and Steady State Devon
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    Created by Maurice Spurway Picture
  • Give power to the police to deal with noise polution on the spot
    As someone who has had to put up with noise I have been horrified by the apathy of the authorities. despite being able to hear noise from a household that was not my direct neighbor the police could not act. If you contact the council department responsible for dealing with the problem you find that you have to make a formal complaint during normal working hours which means that the culprits are notified of YOUR complaint even before the local authority bothers to collect evidence which they will then want to do. A much simpler solution is that the police are called and that they witness and deal with the problem on the spot and perhaps leave until later a return to the property to confiscate equipment used to make excessive noise. In every neighborhood there are people who have to go to work and it is unacceptable that they should have to put up with excessive noise. I personally have witnessed where a noise complaint has been made it has resulted in retaliation from the perpetrators in the form of damage to property resulting in £1000's of damage done and the victim has had to move with the police unwilling or unable to intervene and the local authority uninterested and other neighbors too worried of retaliation to offer supporting evidence. Many people do not report noise problems and suffer in silence because they FEAR retaliation which is a highly realistic risk.
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    Created by Simon Turner Picture
  • Save the Albion Stripes
    Full stripes have been an Albion tradition for over 100 years but the apparent design will render them almost invisible. The change of design has been introduced witjhout consultation with supporters, most of whom seem to be opposed to the new look. Football support should be about heritage and identity not just marketing gimmicks to try to make new merchandising opportunities. * Petitioners will refuse to buy new shirt designs and associated merchandise.
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    Created by Bryn Jones
  • Independent Enquiry into BBC bias regards Scottish Independence Referendum
    There is a suggestion that the BBC may be being used to promulgate propaganda in this affair, may not be unbiased or may be being coerced or influenced to serve one particular agenda. This suggestion should be investigated and BBC conduct explored in the light of their charter.
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    Created by George Moore Picture
  • Oblige the UK's wealthiest people to give something back
    Just like on the popular TV programme 'The Secret Millionaire', I would like to see the wealthy obliged to spend just a few days per year with under privileged families who live on the breadline. If the families of people who actually live on the meagre salaries paid by these wealthy people were chosen then the exercise would be all the more poignant. The rich would have the opportunity to see that the poor often work much harder than they do.....and that not all people have the support, education, connections or the love in their lives needed to enable them to climb the ladder in our society. I believe that there are very few people in the world that are worth salaries in the hundreds of thousands yet many people are lucky enough to enjoy that sort of income -18 000 people now earn over £1 million per year in the UK and over 1000 people are worth over £65 million.......footballer Gareth Bale earns in one week what the average person in the UK earns in ten years - surely some obligation should come with that. Whilst a fairer tax system is essential, simply imposing higher taxes using the socialist model does risk driving people, innovation and investment out of our country. On the other hand, capitalism as it stands has created obscene extremes of wealth with no responsibility attached. I believe that giving the rich a social obligation to spend just a few days a year living with or volunteering in poor communities would have an incredibly cathartic effect. It could promote compassion, generosity, altruism, mutual learning and hopefully philanthropism. This would help rich people to truly earn what they earn. It is our right to demand that those who posess most of the wealth in our country give something back and make an effort to understand the lives of the huge proportion of our society who work for next to nothing. This is not simply about redistribution of wealth but about bridging divides and having a more compassionate society and hence a more generous society. The wealthy can only fully appreciate how difficult life is on the minimum wage, or less, by diving into that life to see it for themselves. Any communion of disperate parts of our society can only be a good thing and is in fact essential. This is not about stunting capitalism but about responsible capitalism and the responsibility that comes with wealth and power.
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    Created by Darren Wassell Picture
  • Help Friends of Blencathra buy the mountain, not a wealthy tycoon
    Because Blencathra is much more than a status symbol on a piece of paper. It is a well-loved mountain, part of our community that should be given back to the people. Blencathra is one of the most renowned landmarks in the Lake District. Back in 1800, Samuel Taylor Coleridge was inspired by a visit to write of the “tyrannous and strong” winds battering “stern Blencathra”. It was also a favourite of the fell-walker and guide book author Alfred Wainwright. John Robson at H&H Land and Property who is managing the sale said this will be bought "by someone who has a certain amount of disposable income”, as it will be “something they will want to pass onto future generations." In other words, the mountain is being marketed as if it were a piece of jewellery, or a landscape painting. But Blencathra is loved by all and is more to us than this. Please join our campaign to petition Lord Lonsdale to allow the public to buy thee mountain. Our second public meeting was held at 2pm on Saturday 31st May 2014 at the Rheged Centre, Redhills, Penrith, Cumbria CA11 0DQ https://www.facebook.com/events/241276059413908/ To donate to the Buy Blencathra send your donations via our website: http://friendsofblencathra.co.uk/donate/ you wish to find out more about the campaign, see these new stories; http://www.itv.com/news/border/update/2014-05-07/friends-of-blencathra-if-we-all-put-a-tenner-in-we-can-buy-it/ http://www.newsandstar.co.uk/news/groups-set-up-to-try-and-buy-cumbrian-mountain- http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/destinations/europe/uk/lakedistrictandcumbria/10752789/Saddleback-Mountain-for-sale-yours-for-1.75-million.html
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    Created by Alan Hudson