• legal aid for child cases
    This is so important.. how can a child custody case be judged honesty and truthfully if one or both parents cannot afford representation. .. it means that the parent who CAN afford a lawyer has an advantage over the other, as he or she will not know the law as well as a lawyer. This means that the child's welfare is NOT being judged fairly
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    Created by Andy Symzz Picture
  • U.K Disabled Veterans being asked to apply for Personal Independence Payments.
    It is important that all disabled veterans are supported by the government as it is the same government that placed them in areas of conflict that has resulted in them requiring financial supports as a result of the injuries they received while serving their country this including loss of mobility, loss of their ability to maintain their basic personal care, ie such as washing dressing, nutrition. Please support this petition to ensure that those U.K veterans who have been left permanently disabled do not also find themselves financially disadvantaged due to the these changes. Ian Duncan Smith needs to remove this process, provide a fair system and be forced to support disabled veterans and not just on Poppy Day. It will only take a few minutes of your time, but a life time of difference to improve the quality of life for disabled veterans.
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    Created by Stewart White Picture
  • Stop Criminalising Homelessness and Begging
    Increasing numbers of homeless people are being arrested for begging around the country. In 2013-14, 2771 cases were brought before the courts, a 70% increase on the previous year. Police use an archaic law which deems those found begging to be 'idle and disorderly'. Begging was made a recordable offence in 2003 against the strong criticisms of civil rights groups and homelessness organisations. Those prosecuted can be fined up to £1000 excluding court charges when found with just a few pennies. Those who have 'gathered alms' (that is, accepted money, food or other material goods offered to them) can be prosecuted under this same law with the same consequences. Some people are kept in cells for several nights. Although begging in and of itself is not an imprisonable offence, if the person is already on bail for another case a simple arrest for begging can lead to imprisonment. Those who are fined will inevitably have to beg more to pay off these fines, risking further arrests and fines, a punishment which stands out in its absurdity. Punishing the destitute for trying to survive is both costly and morally abhorrent. It is a waste of tax payers' money which is spent paying police who 'catch people out' in organised undercover operations, as well as on court cases to prosecute them. The minimum cost of bringing one case to the Magistrates' Court is £1000, meaning that in the year 2013-14, bringing begging cases before the courts cost the taxpayer at least £2.777 million. This is money that could be spent helping people rather than punishing them. Police also routinely move homeless people on under part 3 of the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act (2014) which gives police the power to confiscate property and exclude individuals from a particular area for up to 48 hours, with the officer also able to impose by what manner and route the person must leave. Failure to comply is a criminal offence which can result in a £2500 fine or 3 months in prison. Refusing to surrender your property is punishable by a fine of up to £500. The two conditions needed by officers to issue a dispersal order are firstly, that the constable has 'reasonable grounds to suspect that the behaviour of the person in the locality has contributed or is likely to contribute to (a) members of the public in the locality being harassed, alarmed or distressed, or (b) the occurrence in the locality of crime or disorder, and secondly, that the constable considers that giving a direction to the person is necessary for the purpose of removing or reducing the likelihood of (a) or (b)'. Given that begging is a crime considered 'idle and disorderly', the two laws in tandem essentially give police de facto power to exclude any homeless person from any area simply because they think it is likely that the person, being homeless, might beg there. The highly subjective definition of 'anti-social behaviour' as that which contributes or is likely to contribute to members of the public in the locality being harassed, alarmed or distressed reinforces this and even with the decriminalisation of begging, would still give police the power to move on any homeless person from any area simply because they believe doing so is necessary for the purpose of removing or reducing the likelihood of members of the public being distressed by seeing them. Seeing people forced to live on the streets is distressing to much of the public for good reason, but this compassionate distress means that under this definition a homeless person is considered to be exhibiting anti-social behaviour simply by existing visibly. The anti-social behaviour that causes the public distress is not caused by the homeless person however, but by the authorities' failure to provide people with shelter in a country that has 600,000 empty homes. As described by someone living on the street, being asked to move on when you have nowhere to go is like being asked to walk into a brick wall. These laws and their enforcement victimize vulnerable people who are already suffering the daily struggle of life on the streets or in insecure and unstable temporary accommodation. We believe that kicking someone for limping when it is you who cut off their leg is shameless and cruel. We believe that the government should be providing homes for the homeless, not handcuffs. We therefore call on parliament to repeal without replacement section 3 of the Vagrancy Act (1824), to amend part 3 of the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act (2014) to safeguard homeless people from its discriminatory use, and for an ultimate end to the criminalisation of homelessness by any and all other laws that may be newly concocted or dug up for this purpose. If you have an MP who may be sympathetic, get in touch with them to push this issue to parliament. We launched this petition at our demo at Brighton Magistrate's court on the 20th January.
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    Created by J J
  • End MPs' expenses!
    Why in 2016 when the government are looking to make cuts, should they be immune to the same austerity they force so many others to live with? Last year a reported 1.1 million people were forced into using food banks, this year they are trying to force our NHS to do more, with less. They have already attacked the disabled, and raised tuition fees for those looking to further their education while at the same time taking a pay rise. Why should they get to claim personal expenses? Especially when the average MP salary is £67,060. The UK average salary is reported to be £26,500, and yet you and I have to pay for our own food, our own travel expenses, as well as our own day to day living expenses. Whilst I understand that staffing costs make up nearly three quarters of the total MP expenses budget, staffing and office costs as well as reasonable long distance travel costs should be managed by the IPSA. Any other personal claims simply shouldn't be allowed. Let's stand together and remind the Government they stand in office to serve the greater goods best interest and not their own.
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    Created by Craig Ashford
  • Change Social Housing Banding For Domestic Abuse Survivors
    ‘The Home Office estimates that 14,273 women and girls in Bristol have been a victim of domestic abuse in the past year’ (Bristol Ideal: 2015). For the women who have to flee from domestic abuse there are some fantastic support networks in Bristol that supply ‘emergency’, ‘temporary’ accommodation in safe houses and women’s refuges. I myself was living within a safe house in Bristol with my one year old son when I started this petition. It took me almost a year to move out and that is relatively quick as many women I left behind have been there 2 years and counting. Currently women and families living in temporary housing that need help from social housing to move on are not given priority. This petition is to get Bristol City Council to change the banding criteria to put vulnerable women and children into the highest band, Band 1. Despite being officially classed as homeless and at risk, the current highest banding we can be put into is Band 2. Not all women even get up to Band 2! This petition has got us some great attention and coverage and the issue was out to Bristol City Council in March as a motion to change the banding. A vote was taken and we got a unanimous yes vote. We thought we had won and the change would be made. Unfortunately politics is never that simple. The then mayor of Bristol, George Ferguson, did not action the motion so it was not put through. As the local councillor and mayoral elections were coming up we knew we would not see a change happen till after May. So continuing to campaign we attended mayoral hustings, posed questions on radio programmes and used social media to reach out to all the mayoral candidates to give a response to this band change. All were extremely positive about making this change and promised to see it happen. Marvin Rees, the new mayor of Bristol, went as far as putting it into his campaign manifesto to become mayor. Now he is in power, and has been for over 100 days, we still have not seen the band change! So now we are calling on him to make good on his promise and help save many lives. With the startling, but sadly well known, statistic that on average 2 women per week are killed nationally as a result of domestic abuse, it’s time more action was taken to improve services. Bristol City Council needs to give priority banding to re house survivors of domestic abuse to literally save lives. According to Women’s Aid (online), ‘the most dangerous time for a woman is when she is trying to escape her abuser’. Having to wait months to get into emergency accommodation is not good enough. Having to wait years to get out of emergency accommodation is not good enough. Please sign this petition to make Marvin Rees stick to his promise and make this important change ! Thank You. Reference Links: http://www.womensaid.org.uk/domestic_violence_topic.asp?section=0001000100220036&sectionTitle=Statistics http://www.bristolideal.org.uk/domestic-and-sexual-violence/
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    Created by Mehala Osborne
  • Child First: Safe Child Contact Saves Lives
    "No parent should have to hold their children and comfort them as they die, or be told that their child has been harmed in an act of revenge or rage. There are often many facets to one family's breakdown, and all too often children’s voices are not heard or acted upon" (Claire Throssell, mother of Jack and Paul who were killed in October 2014 by their father after he was granted unsupervised contact with them by the family court). Over the last 10 years, 19 children and 2 women have died as a result of unsafe child contact, formal or informal, with a parent who is also a perpetrator of domestic abuse. These deaths were avoidable. To protect children, the family courts must put children's safety at the heart of any decisions they make about contact with a known perpetrator of domestic abuse. Women’s Aid’s Child First: Safe Child Contact Saves Lives campaign is calling on the Government and the family courts to protect the children that it has been set up to keep safe. Whilst only a minority of child contact cases, after the parents have separated, are taken to the family courts many of these cases involving domestic abuse result in contact decisions which do not put the children's safety and best interests first. This can leave them, and their non-abusive, parent in considerable danger. Visit the Women’s Aid website to find out more about this campaign: http://www.womensaid.org.uk/childfirst.
    45,253 of 50,000 Signatures
    Created by Women's Aid
  • Syrians are having water for Dinner, what are you having?
    I heard on the news this morning that a person had been reported to have been interviewed on the Radio, that he was having a bowl of water with some spices for dinner. They have no food and have even been eating the grass. It has now however snowed, so the grass is covered over. They are so starved, it was reported that they have even eating their pets.\ Image is copied from BBC Website dated 7th January 16, Story Title: Syrian government 'to let aid into besieged Madaya'
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    Created by Paul Davis
  • Allow commuters with disabilities to use free bus pass for commuting.
    At the moment the free bus pass is only valid for journeys which start after 9.30am. This seems illogical for a travel benefit which is specifically aimed at "people of working age". Imagine having a stroke in your early twenties, your life slips away to be replaced by dreams. You fight hard to recover, and learn how to walk. You want to volunteer at a local food bank but the bus pass you hold won't allow you to travel there on time. You were hoping that the volunteering might help you get a job. All you needed was a small helping hand instead of a closed door.
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    Created by Rebecca Woods
  • Don't exclude the Greens
    The EU referendum is already going to be dominated by the voices of fear and big business that dominate our media. By giving UKIP a further platform to espouse their divisive rhetoric the situation is only going to get worse. The EU is a very flawed institution, it is undemocratic and overly bureaucratic and needs serious reform; but it also enshrines fundamental protection for people at work and the environment (among many other benefits). These are areas the Conservative are already attacking with their draconian Trade Union bill and their shameful attack renewable subsidies and the extension of fracking. By once again excluding the Green Party and ignoring our rising support the BBC is not only acting undemocratically, but is excluding progressive voices and setting the frames of reference for the EU debate in an increasingly negative way. This debate is going to be crucial to the future of society and needs to be as open, inclusive and democratic as possible. We need to ensure all views are heard, and stop them crowding out the viewpoints that care about the interests of ordinary people and our environment.
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    Created by William Quick Picture
  • What the Frack! Regular referendums. Let the UK public vote for their future.
    Members of the public find it difficult to support a political party 100%. Our system is out of date, our MPs out of touch, the public go unheard. We agree with points made by the Lib Dems, the Conservatives, Labour, the Green Party, the SNP etc and sometimes we disagree with them all. Either way we can't communicate with the government effectively. The system needs to work for us all but instead it's dusty, nobody really understands it or cares to sort it out with any long term vision. We need to start again. Simplify. Direct questions, direct answers. If regular referendums were to take place, the public are truly part of the process, allowing us to demonstrate what we care about, that we're united and want to invest in the future of this land and it's people. Less moaning and more doing, having a proactive and fair say, feeling satisfied that the decisions are being made and supported by the majority of the UK. Let the UK public vote for their future. This Kingdom can then begin to feel proud and respected, and most importantly, united.
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    Created by Tezia Perret
  • Take My Blood
    The stigma toward gay men regarding HIV and Aids, is outdated and no longer practical. The NHS need people to donate blood, people should not be exempt due to their sexual preferences. The risk of infection is equally real to us all; the reason that more gay men are diagnosed with HIV, is simply because more gay men get tested for HIV than hetrosexual men do. Hetrosexual men in GUM clinics are 10% less likely to agree to a HIV test than a gay male is (Source: Public Health England (PHE) (2015) ‘HIV in the UK: situation report 2015’). Let everyone donate blood for the life saving operations it's used for.
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    Created by Thomas Looker
  • Relation Education for schools
    As a nineteen year old there have been many things that I have experienced so far in my life. We all in someway have gone though a lot that we unfortunately had no help with or anyone there to to comfort us and tell us that its going to be okay. You have the good memories that we cling to so dearly, and then there are those which are not so great. Events that should have never even taken place, especially for those so young and vulnerable. The bad memories where you think I wish I would have known ‘this’ or ‘that’ then maybe I would have not been so lost and helpless in that situation. If that were the case you could have been somewhere else today. A lot of our youth nowadays are susceptible to making very life-changing decisions or mistakes that they were not warned or aware of as they were growing up. Our education system is so set on Sex Education being improved constantly and carrying out classes to younger and younger ages each year. In doing so each generation is thinking more about sex in contrast to accomplishing a fully content life with healthy relationships amongst friends, families and significant others. Instead we end up with unsatisfied young men and women who seek happiness in the wrong things and places, they take their loved ones for granted, push their family away and allow the road to anti-social behaviour and depression to creep in where it seems almost impossible for the individual to ever be happy with anything or anyone. My aim for this petition is to launch the start of Relationship Education classes for young people. Where we can teach children the values of trust, respect, loyalty, communication, love, and integrity in the right way. From being raised in a single parent family I saw my mother in the most damaging ways as a child. I saw her beaten by men and women, I saw her heartbroken numerous times, she was also very angry with the world. But the one thing I would see in her for the most part compared to everything else was of course disappointment. She would always weep and wonder why she never saw certain things coming or how she wishes she would have done things differently or maybe to have not done anything at all. Relationship classes should have been put in place a long time ago, God knows so many of us would have benefited highly from them. Classes where we can help guide our youth, pave out the road to success and point them in the right direction is something that should be encouraged not thrown to the side. Good relationships with others should hold far more importance than Sex Education which I do still believe is essential to be taught but definitely not more significant than building a happy community with one another. I believe these classes will help our schools to see a dramatic drop in bullying, absences and insecurities. Through this scheme we will teach mutual respect, the correct manner to communicate with one another and to avoid unkind comments or gestures that would hurt your peer in any way. In addition to this procedure we will have gained a large increase in sociable engagement with other peers, good attendance, confident individuals, an expansion on creativity and most of all a happy class. Not only will this benefit children during school time but the life skills they will attain will be practiced in the comfort of their own home, with family and friends, through college, university, in the workplace and so on.
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    Created by Saira Kaur Picture