So Voters of Britain if you need some more vote Tory it does what it says on the tin. The only good thing that came from Thatchers time in power was a program about out of work builders..
Some work today was completed in record time and to a very high standard. Credit where Credits due, I have spoken to some of the residents less than ten minutes ago, and they all say thanks. Well done urban vision,
Perhaps New Labour should tell our candidates wife, or her insurance company. It’s sad that this should happen so often in this city. And the people who cannot afford it suffer the most.This mindless vandalism ended up with nothing but misery for a young women on her own,
We are unsure is it a labour man we all know jumping from Salford Townhall or the Prime minister.
Contact us with your guess as to who it is. Just a bit of fun….
Comment we live for our Children so what in gods name is this government doing again failing the people
24dash.com Three million UK children living in poverty: Government accused of breaking promises
Campaigners tonight accused the Government of “breaking its promises” as figures showed nearly three million children still live below the poverty line.
Ministers have admitted that meeting a target to halve child poverty by 2010/11 – pledged by Tony Blair a decade ago when 3.4 million children were living in poverty – would be “very difficult” in the current financial climate.
The Institute of Fiscal Studies said the report showed inequality had risen to its highest level since 1961 and that growth of average take-home pay had slowed even before the start of the current recession.
The figures, released by the Department for Work and Pensions today, showed 5.6 million working age adults were earning less than 60% of the median national income. For a family with two children that means living on less than £361 a week.
The Households Below Average Income survey (HBAI) found consistent falls from 1998 in the number of children living below the poverty line but between 2006 and 2008 those numbers stalled.
It also found an extra 200,000 children were living in low income families which could not afford basic treats like inviting a friend home to tea or celebrating a birthday, since 2006/7.
In the population as a whole the report found 11 million people in poverty – a figure which has risen by 300,000 since 2006.
The rate of income growth in the population as a whole in the last decade has been broadly flat.
But the poorest have seen a small reduction in their income and the numbers of working age adults in poverty increased by 200,000 in 2007/8 – although statisticians said that the rise could be due to survey variations.
There are also 2.5 million pensioners living in poverty, which represents a fall of 200,000 since 1998.
The report did find large reductions in the levels of persistent poverty – households judged as being below the poverty line for three or more of the last four years – among children and pensioners since 1998.
The 2010-11 milestone was set by then Prime Minister Tony Blair as an interim target on the way to eradicating child poverty altogether by 2020.
Children’s Minister Beverley Hughes said that in the current economic climate, meeting the target would be hard.
“Meeting the 2010 target is very difficult,” she said. “It is very difficult to model the impact of the recession on child poverty.”
But, she added, the Government remains, “absolutely committed” to the 2020 target.
“We knew from the disappointing figures in 2006/7 that we were unlikely to see reductions in the child poverty figures for 07/08 but I’m pleased the child poverty rates have remained broadly stable.”
She said the Government took “pre-emptive action” when drops in the figures stalled in 2006 but those measures did not come into effect until last year and the benefit would not yet be seen in the figures.
Pensions Minister Rosie Winterton said: “We’ve lifted 900,000 pensioners out of poverty and as an EU Commission report showed, the income of the UK’s pensioners has increased significantly over the last decade.
“In 1997 UK pensioner income was well below the European average. Today their income is 9% higher than the EU average.”
But shadow work and pensions secretary, Theresa May, said: “Gordon Brown’s pledge to halve child poverty by 2010 is just one of countless Labour promises that lies in tatters.
“The Government needs to wake up and get a grip of this problem. Simply relying on means-tested benefits to address the symptoms of poverty is unsustainable. Instead we must tackle the root causes of poverty, such as educational failure, family breakdown, drug abuse, indebtedness and crime.”
Liberal Democrat work and pensions spokesman, Steve Webb, accused the Government of losing the fight against child poverty.
He said: “Gordon Brown’s means-tested benefits have failed to lift children and pensioners out of poverty.”
Children’s charities said the Government had abandoned their 2010 commitment.
Colette Marshall, UK director of Save the Children, said: “The Government has clearly broken its promise to lift up to three million children out of poverty in the UK.
“In 2001 Gordon Brown referred to child poverty as a ‘scar on Britain’s soul’. This scar is taking a very long time to heal.”
Martin Narey, chief executive of Barnardo’s, said: “Today’s figures provide confirmation that Labour have abandoned their bravest commitment – to halve child poverty by 2010. For the families left to languish in the misery and debt that poverty inflicts, that is a tragedy.”
Carey Oppenheim, co-director of the Institute for Public Policy Research, said: “The figures on child poverty released today are very disappointing as they show that progress on poverty has stagnated and even deteriorated on some measures. These figures also pre-date the recession so the number of children currently in poverty today is likely to be higher.
“The recent Budget provided very little new cash to help bring down Britain’s high levels of child poverty – so there is no hope of halving child poverty by 2010.
“This means many more children will be growing up in poverty, and at greater risk of under-performing in school or missing out on employment opportunities in later life.
“Turning this around requires greater financial support for families, more access to jobs and improvements in education and skills.”
24dash.com Cabinet ministers under fire over ‘dubious’ expenses claims
Harriet Harman today defended her Cabinet colleagues after receipts were disclosed detailing thousands of pounds of expenses.
The receipts, printed in the Daily Telegraph, showed Prime Minister Gordon Brown paid his own brother for cleaning services and Justice Secretary Jack Straw refunded about £1,500 in overpayments for council tax, as well as mortgage bills.
Campaign group the TaxPayers’ Alliance said the “dubious” claims showed the need for “urgent and wholesale reform” of the expenses system.
But Ms Harman, Labour’s Leader of the Commons, said the Government had already moved to ensure that the system was tightened up.
“The old system was the system that those claims were made under,” she said.
“We’ve recognised that, though they might have been claims made in good faith, that’s not acceptable for the future and we are changing the system.
“We want to be sure of two things – firstly that MPs are able to do their job in their constituencies and in Westminster, and secondly that public money is not misused and the public have confidence in the allowance system.”
Ms Harman told GMTV: “I know people will be very angry and concerned about this, but I do want to reassure people that we have recognised there’s a problem and we’ve already taken action on this.”
But she denied the accusations amounted to “fiddling” expenses.
“I think you’ve got to be quite careful about saying ‘fiddling’. I don’t think that because Gordon Brown, the Prime Minister, shared a cleaner for his flat with his brother, that that is fiddling.
“I don’t think anyone’s suggesting that Gordon Brown was pocketing that £6,000, nor are they suggesting that his brother was pocketing that £6,000.”
Ms Harman went on: “I agree with you, and we’ve all agreed, that the system is not one that commands public confidence and that it had to change.”
Ms Harman added that Mr Brown had commissioned an independent inquiry by the Committee on Standards in Public Life, under Sir Christopher Kelly.
Meanwhile, a member of the senior MPs’ committee which runs the House of Commons accused the Telegraph of obtaining the details from a leaker.
Receipts submitted by all MPs were due to be published on July 1 after the House of Commons authorities lost a legal battle to keep them secret, and reports earlier this year suggested that a computer disc containing them was being offered to the media for £300,000.
Sir Stuart Bell, who sits on the House of Commons Commission, said: “If this was received by unauthorised means, it is disgraceful that a national newspaper should stoop so low as to buy information which will be in the public domain in July.
“It undermines the very basis of our democracy and is against all the rules of fair play, rewards thieves or leakers of information who may be in breach of contract and does no service to our democracy.”
Benedict Brogan of the Daily Telegraph declined to say how the paper had obtained the information, telling the BBC: “One of the great rules about journalism is that you never talk about your sources. What matters is that we’ve established that this information is reliable and it is certainly in the public interest that we publish it.”
He added: “For the first time after years of trying to get this information, Telegraph readers and the general public will have an idea of the systemic abuse of parliamentary allowances that has been going on for years and has grown up out of a system that clearly is no longer suitable for what it’s designed to do.”
Although there is no allegation any of the ministers broke parliamentary rules, the report is certain to raise further concerns over MPs’ £24,000-a-year second home allowance.
An independent review of MPs’ expenses due to report by the end of this year is expected to recommend a thorough overhaul of the system.
But Mr Brown had to drop his bid to replace the second home allowance with a daily attendance payment after failing to secure all-party support.
Matthew Elliott, chief executive of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “There can be no greater proof of the need for urgent and wholesale reform of MPs’ expenses than the fact that so many people at the top of government have been making such dubious claims.
“Taxpayers will be appalled that the rot in parliament seems to go right to the Cabinet and even Downing Street.”
A spokesman for the Prime Minister said that Mr Brown and his brother shared a cleaner at their two flats. Andrew Brown paid the cleaner and the Prime Minister reimbursed his share of the cost.
The double claim for the plumbing bill was an “inadvertent error” by Mr Brown’s office, which contacted the parliamentary Fees Office and repaid the money as soon as it came to light, said the spokesman.
Mr Brown’s spokesman added: “The claims were made because in order to represent constituents effectively, MPs have to live in their constituencies and in London.
“At all times Gordon Brown acted with the full approval of the parliamentary authorities.”
A spokesman for Mr Straw said that the Justice Secretary himself spotted errors in his claim for council tax and repaid the difference.
An error arose in his claims relating to mortgage interest payments because of a rapid decline in the amount payable towards the end of the mortgage, he added.
“Mr Straw takes his responsibilities in relation to claims under the Additional Costs Allowance very seriously,” said the spokesman.
“Any costs claimed in relation to his home in his Blackburn constituency and time spent in Blackburn have been made entirely in accordance with the rules set by the Commons authorities.”
A spokesman for Ms Blears said that all of her claims had been approved as being in line with the rules.
He added: “In order to do her job as MP for Salford, she has to have accommodation in London to be near to the House of Commons during the week. This accommodation includes a bed, a mattress, blankets and pillows and a television.”
During the period covered by the expenses claims, Ms Blears sold a flat in Kennington, south London, and bought another in Farringdon, London, staying in a hotel for a short period between the flats. She did not own more than one property in London at any point.
Lord Mandelson’s spokesman said: “The expenditure on Peter Mandelson’s home was to repair it, not improve it. To create a different impression is not honest.”
And Mr Burnham said he had “underclaimed” the maximum amount available to him under the second homes allowance by a total of £40,000 over the past five years.
“I reject absolutely any suggestion that I have not used public funds properly since I entered Parliament,” said the Culture Secretary.
Serious doubt over maths targets
Last Updated – 7th May 2009 at 11:33 PM –>
In a report on mathematics performance in primary schools, MPs warned that the Department for Children, Schools and Families needs to “radically” re-think its strategy for pupil attainment.
Currently, the department has a target for 84.5 per cent of primary school pupils to make at least two national curriculum levels of progress between the ages of 7 and 11 by 2011.
But in 2007 just 76 per cent of pupils made two levels of progress, and the report estimates that a further 12,000 pupils a year will have to make progress in order to meet the target laid out in the department’s national strategy.
The PAC also warned that primary school pupils’ understanding of maths has not improved despite billions of pounds in government investment.
Approximately 30,000 children progressed to secondary school last year with the maths skills of a seven-year-old at best, the report stated.
It condemned this record as “disgraceful”, especially as over £2.3bn was spent on teaching for mathematics in 2006/07 alone.
Committee chairman Edward Leigh said: “It is disgraceful that over one fifth of all primary school children reach the end of their primary education without a secure grasp of basic mathematical skills.
“This can have serious long-term consequences: for many then continue through secondary school without acquiring basic numeracy skills, impairing their chances in life and leaving them later in need of expensive remedial education.”
But schools minister Sarah McCarthy Fry said that last year, over 100,000 more children achieved a level four in their maths at the age of 11 than in 1997.
“This is a tremendous achievement, of which our pupils and teachers should be rightly proud,” she said.
“We have already accepted the main recommendation from a recent independent review of primary maths that every school should have a specialist maths teacher and have pledged £24m over the next three years for a training programme for teachers.
“We are also investing £50m in the Every Child Counts programme, which has specially trained teachers helping children catch up with maths in one-to-one support,” she added.
Shadow schools minister Nick Gibb said: “The government is not getting value for the money they have piled into education and the country is falling behind in international league tables as a result.
“The government has failed to grasp the nettle and replace methods of teaching which have failed with tried and tested methods used in countries that have much higher levels of maths achievement.”
Pink rink firm hired for fair despite debts
COUNCIL chiefs have re-employed the controversial pink rink bosses who still owe them £65,000 from last year.
Salford council is owed the cash by North West Funfairs which staged the rink and funfair on the lawns in front of Swinton Civic Centre, on Chorley Road.
After the council threatened legal action, the firm agreed to pay the debt at £1,000 a month for the next five years.
Comment how many of you have been late with the community charge and have had letters which say you will be taken to court? How many have recived letters saying you must Now pay all your charge up front?
Well why can somebody who as not paid his bills be allowed so much time. Come on let’s get this right who makes up the rules. Something is sadly wrong.
MORE Salfordians could be left homeless, according to a council report.
The report from a cabinet meeting with Salford City Council this week, showed that the number of mortgage repossessions in the third quarter of this year is 98 per cent higher, almost double what it was in 2007.
In addition there were 284 landlord possession orders made – a 35 per cent increase on the same period in 2007. The report claims this will ‘probably result in more people presenting as homeless.
Week by week my phone rings with people looking for homes. Desperate,so many people so few houses. The likes of the BNP start to grow why? because they use these facts, blame the immigrants. You hear the same comments it’s sad,but what have Labour done to halt this problem. How many social houses have been built in their term of office. They have failed the people of this country. Only yesterday one mum asked me how do i help my son Councillor chuck him on the street? how much affordable housing have we built. Life exist Labour outside Salford Keys.The people of this city deserve better than this.