• Call for a public enquiry into the death of Alexander Litvinenko
    UK coroner Sir Robert Owen, under pressure from Foreign Secretary William Hague, has said a legal inquest will exclude material implicating either Russia's state agencies or the UK security services. Seven years after the death of her husband, Marina Litvinenko is no closer to knowing the truth about his death. This is a travesty of justice at the heart of Westminster and a disgrace to the people of Britain. Many other lives were also put at risk - in London, Moscow and Hamburg and on planes and vehicles in which the Polonium was transported. The public deserves an answer too. see: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22579463 http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/may/17/alexander-litvinenko-widow-slams-william-hague?INTCMP=SRCH
    203 of 300 Signatures
    Created by Susan Cullinan
  • MP's spare bedrooms at taxpayers' expense
    In the light of the current legislation which aims to claw money back from social housing tenants who are in receipt of housing benefit if their accommodation has 'too many' bedrooms - it might be interesting to discover how many MPs have claimed for housing that they 'under-occupy', and which of these MPs are in favour of the bedroom tax.
    127 of 200 Signatures
    Created by David Robson
  • Support Dorset & Hampshire's Offshore Wind Farm
    As you are probably aware; Navitus Bay Wind Park (1) will be located off the Dorset and Hampshire Coasts, to the west of the Isle of Wight, and also visible from Bournemouth, Poole and Swanage. I understand this development could produce the equivalent energy to power 800,000 homes and reduce carbon emissions by up to 1,125,000 tonnes per annum. This will be a tremendous contribution to our country's energy needs and carbon reductions. It will also help towards our renewable energy target of 15% which in the past few years has been behind plan and behind the progress rates of many other EU nations (2). I am very concerned however that a small group of local activists are using information that has little to no scientific backing to discredit this development and are creating fears about the impact on tourism and jobs in the area. I would urge you to balance any of their views against the report produced by The University of Edinburgh, presented to a Committee of the Scottish Parliament (3) in which there is clear consensus that there has been no measurable economic impact, either positively or negatively, of wind farms on tourism and concludes that “while some strongly held localised and anecdotal opinion exists, the Committee has seen no empirical evidence which demonstrates that the tourism industry in Scotland will be adversely affected by the deployment of renewable energy projects, particularly onshore and offshore wind” I appreciate the turbines will be visible from the coast on a clear day but believe this to be a small and perfectly acceptable compromise for the benefits delivered. Furthermore, I personally confirm that this development will not any way restrict the frequency or manner in which I enjoy the beach and coastal areas in the effected locations. 1. www.navitusbaywindpark.co.uk 2. http://ec.europa.eu/energy/renewables/reports/doc/com_2013_0175_res_en.pdf 3. www.scottish.parliament.uk/S4_EconomyEnergyandTourismCommittee/Reports/eeR-12-07w-r.pdf
    1,703 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Mark Chivers
  • Please Help stop the UK Governments plan to retroactively change the law!!
    Last year, student Cait Reilly and unemployed driver Jamieson Wilson, took the Tory led coalition to task over their controversial Workfare programme arguing that it was unlawful. Three Judges found that regulations under which most of the Tory led coalition back-to-work schemes were created are unlawful. The main issue is that the Tory led coalition lost this case and they lost because they failed to provide sufficient and legal information about Workfare to job-seekers. It is estimated that 231,000 people were originally affected by their decision and had their benefits sanctioned (ie stopped). The morality of the Workfare system is not being debated here (although flaws of the system are outlined below). This petition is about the abhorrent behaviour of the Tory led coalition that followed this decision and their decision to retroactively change the law. On 19 March 2013, a Bill was rushed through the House of Commons which will change the law (that they broke) retroactively thus enabling the Tory led coalition to avoid having to repay the money that they illegally took from job-seekers - an average of £550 per person. The issue here is threefold: Firstly, the Tory led coalition (assisted by Labour and Lib Dems) are trying to retrospectively change the law to protect themselves from their own flawed policies. By retrospectively changing the law they can ensure that no law has now been broken and thereby avoid having to repay those who they illegally sanctioned. This behaviour is morally repugnant and vile and cannot be allowed to happen. Secondly, there seems to be a complete media blackout on the story and the Bill was rushed through, the day before the Budget - one may argue in an attempt to bury it? Thirdly, the Workfare scheme is fundamentally flawed and has been shown not to be an effective tool to get unemployed back in to work. The problem is there are no jobs for people and the Tory led coalition is deflecting this fact away by demonising those looking for work such as Miss Reilly and Mr Wilson. There is plenty of evidence to show that workfare claimants are replacing real jobs. Since this WP came in, many retail giants and the Royal Mail have used workfare so they don't have to offer overtime to their existing workers. Asda recently put all their part-time staff on contracts which guarantee just 4 hours work a week. Many shops are run by workfare. This whole scheme is about exploiting labour - the workfare claimants are being exploited for free labour; the existing workers are being exploited by losing hours and pay; and we are all being exploited when what we buy is making profits for corporations which are using what is effectively indentured labour. People who are fortunate enough to be paid for their work are afraid of rocking the boat lest they be replaced. These schemes guarantee a cowed and compliant workforce, paid or not, who will be reluctant to unionise and unwilling to protest in case they lose their jobs. Meanwhile, taxpayers' money is being poured by the billion into the coffers of welfare-to-work companies and corporate profiteers, and Labour seem to be OK with this in principle. These are extremely important issues and cannot be ignored.
    12,231 of 15,000 Signatures
    Created by shari finch
  • Defend the right to challenge the cuts
    Michael MacDonald was arrested on the night of the 16th February when he was at home alone looking after his young son. The arrest followed an incident earlier in the day when MacDonald, known by friends and colleagues as 'Don', engaged with Nick Forbes, the the Labour Council leader, in the street. 'Don' wanted to discuss with Forbes, the effects of the cuts to Newcastle's youth services, which the youth worker fears will have a devastating effect on the most vulnerable residents of the city. Don was not threatening to him. He didn't swear. He only tried to explain to Forbes, as a professional youth worker, the effects these cuts would have on the city's services. The actions taken by Forbes and the police are not what we expect of those who are meant to serve and protect the residents of Newcastle. It is important that situations involving the police as outlined above are not allowed to occur, which serve to intimidate and disturb the people of Newcastle who exercise their right to peaceful protest and freedom of speech. Although a minor offence, if charged Don would be left with a criminal record and there would a black mark against this hard-working and well respected community worker. Don was served a fixed penalty notice under Section 5 of the Public Order Act, but has returned this notice to the court and has stated his intention to fight the accusation. His arrest has serious implications for public protest and freedom of expression in Newcastle and nationally. We stand with him against this attack on the right to protest. The accusation is unjust, meant to intimidate and is preposterous. It is clear that: 1. A civil servant has used their authority to demand an arrest. 2. The police have removed a family man from his home in the middle of the night when he had sole responsibility for his six year old child, detained him for four hours on the basis of a minor charge, during which time he was encouraged to accept a fixed penalty fine for doing nothing more than exercising the rights we all have as residents of Newcastle. Initial signatories: John McDonnell MP Kate Hudson, national secretary Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament Jerry Hicks, Unite Grassroots Left Dot Gibson, National Secretary Pensioner Convention Bill Bowring, Haldane Society Socialist Lawyers Andrew Burgin, vice chair Coalition of Resistance
    1,004 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Stuart Robertson
  • Stop Earl's Court Scheme
    At £8 billion, the Earl's Court redevelopment scheme is the largest in the world outside of China. It challenges the Government's committment to the Big Society and Localism and looks set to repeat the mistakes of property speculation that busted the Western economies. The campaign to save the Exhibition Centres, the rail depot and engineering works and the two council estates is on the front line battling to champion democracy and community in the face of rampant prfiteering by tax-havenbed entitiers at the expense of the poor, jobs and our international trade. The petition wording explains further.
    14 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Jonathan Rosenberg
  • Reduce Crown Copyright from 50 years to 10 years
    The UK's copyright laws for government works are archaic. In the USA for example works of the Federal Government don't get any copyright protection. The restrictive Crown Copyright rules that currently apply in the UK make it harder for campaigning websites to reproduce government documents in full and don't help information-based businesses. This campaign isn't for the rules to be scrapped though but rather for the period of protection to be reduced to 10 years which means the government can exploit its works commercially for one decade if it wishes to do so. In the digital era a government copyright term of longer than ten years cannot be justified.
    37 of 100 Signatures
    Created by J Cross
  • Public inquiry into handling of the Trump Resort
    Only a full public inquiry can now get to the bottom of this story. We need to know how local and central government dealt with the Trump Organisation, what was offered by whom and when, and we need to establish why planning guidelines and environmental regulations were simply unable to protect our community and the unique environment we live in. Finally, we need to know what changes can be made so the planning system again works like it is supposed to.
    19,588 of 20,000 Signatures
    Created by David Milne
  • Stop the Cuts in Gateshead
    The gradual withdrawal of services will eventually mean the end of local democracy as the council becomes ever more pointless and powerless. For example as part of its budget proposals Gateshead City Council is proposing reduction of branch libraries to 12 and the withdrawal of professional support for 5 libraries which may or may not continue being run by volunteers. This comes on top of massive staff cuts last year and more proposed in the future. Local government may not be perfect but it's better than a mish mash of services provided by charity or multinational companies like G4s or SERCO.
    113 of 200 Signatures
    Created by Dave Sh
  • Scottish Independence Referendum - Make Voting Compulsory
    In Alex Salmond's own words, this is the most important question facing Scotland in the last 300 years. It is vital then that the decision either way is not made after a small turnout at the polling booths. Apathy must not be a deciding factor in such a momentous decision. I am proposing that Prime Minister David Cameron urgently introduces a bill at Westminster to ensure that all voters in Scotland are compelled on this single occasion to vote. If individuals express a view that this infringes human rights then all they need to is attend a polling booth and 'spoil' the ballot paper.
    27 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Ronnie McInnes
  • Reconsider the GCSE reforms
    We know that GCSEs are not working. We know that our education system is working solely due to the immense and highly admirable efforts of those who work tirelessly to improve the chances and opportunities of young people. We have the opportunity, as a people, to radically evolve this system. For a summary of why this government's proposals are likely to cause immense damage, see http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/sep/17/michael-gove-gcse-reforms?newsfeed=true. Some of the world's most foremost experts in education, who have all achieved spectacular results, have suggested a very different route. See for example http://www.ted.com/talks/ken_robinson_says_schools_kill_creativity.html. Rather than ignoring them, the government could and should make use of their considerable expertise. By taking the small step of revising the proposals through a committee of learning experts, the government has the opportunity to make positive and informed reforms that will benefit each and every child in the UK for generations to come.
    104 of 200 Signatures
    Created by Samuel Morgan
  • Uncomplicated Lords Reform
    No need to use a sledgehammer to crack this very tiny nut of an issue. This small device will do it in one easy, democratic, stroke.
    17 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Derek Johnson