Honour amongst thieves? no…

At around 8pm on Saturday 13 September 2014 the victims, a 77-year-old woman and a 44-year-old man, were entering their house on Gerrard Street, Pendleton when they were pushed from behind by a man forcing his way into their house.
He pushed the woman on to the stairs and grappled with the man, making both victims flee in fear for their safety.
They ran into the street shouting for help, alerting neighbours who called the Police.
As they stood outside, the offender rushed back out the house and demanded the woman’s purse, snatching it out of her hands before running off.
The offender is described as white, 5ft 10in, with a broad build and wearing all black clothes with his hood up. He spoke with a local accent.

Well done the Star for spotting this one…

SALFORD COUNCIL SPENDS £78,000 ON CUTS CONSULTANTS

Star date: 30th September 2014

PWC £78,000 FEE TO CUT JOBS AND SERVICES

Salford Council has employed consultants Price Waterhouse Cooper at a cost of £78,000 for just two months work to support internal `transformation’ work – in other words, to help cut jobs and services.

The Council has a history of employing expensive consultants which has cost well over half a million pounds in recent years…a Fat Cat consultant, a Stadium consultant, a Deprived Community consultant…the list goes on and on and on…

Full story here…

Sums the Tories up rather well…

Let’s get this straight. The Conservative party or its leadership are not being reluctantly dragged rightwards. They are boldly going into the blue yonder, because that’s where their yearnings take them. Out of Europe is not just a policy, it’s a proxy for all they hate, from human rights to welfare. Outism is a romantic longing for all their little England could be, if only it were free of everything – possibly including voters.

The chancellor ratcheted rightwards with undisguised glee, welfare cuts his totemic message. Brazenly he reprised “All in it together” as yet again his £3.2bn cuts divided young from old and low-paid from the wealthier with a pensions bonanza for their heirs. Will voters think it “fair” to take an average of £300 and up to £1,300 from low-income households? Not idlers, but 7 million are “hardworking” families: abysmal low pay is why they need tax credits. Jonathan Portes of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research points to the inequality effect: with Osborne forecasting pay rising by 3.5-4.5% by 2018, this cut accelerates the divide. Hidden in here is a housing benefit cut that will cause evictions: already landlords refuse to let to tenants on housing benefit.

The young unemployed will be de-housed and “abolished”. How? Easy. After six months they will be on litter-picking-type unpaid work, and sanctions will follow the slightest infraction. Iain Duncan Smith’s jobcentres no longer measure people into work: their target is “off-flow” from benefits. Bully and sanction people enough and hey presto, unemployment is “abolished”. Meanwhile, the triple-locked old are protected and benefits will be paid on authoritarian cards that only buy essentials.

Disingenuous – no, a downright lie – was the pledge to protect the disabled. Those put in the “work-related activity group” – over half a million disabled people judged possibly able to work some day – will suffer cuts. A third have learning disabilities, many have cancer: only 5% of this group in the work programme ever find a job. Why pick on them? Because George Osborne has spent £10bn more on disability benefit than he planned. DWP chaos means a backlog of 700,000 awaiting Atos tests. Another backlog of 200,000 of the sick awaiting assessment for personal independence payments get nothing and some die waiting: if you have a car crash or a stroke, you will get no help for six months or more. The number of disabled people isn’t rising but the backlog is, due to DWP incompetence.

Osborne’s briefer was super-confident: just ask Labour what they’d cut instead, he said with a touch of his master’s smirk. That’s just the appetiser: Osborne pledges a three-course meal of £12bn in welfare cuts, and yes, he will spell out what the next £9bn will be. Hasta la vista, Labour, match that!

But does it make political sense to cut nearly half of all households while claiming there is a recovery? Osborne relies on polls showing even Labour voters still want welfare cuts. But this Tory trap for Labour may rebound: another £12bn may go too far as more people see food banks, the bedroom tax and the malevolent treatment of anyone unlucky enough to need help. Whose recovery is it? Ernst & Young analysis says on average, households will still be £1,000 poorer in 2017 than a decade before: the bottom half is all in it together.

Watching the parade of unpleasant abrasiveness – from Chris Grayling to Eric Pickles, Duncan Smith to Grant Shapps – this looks like a party whose feet have left the ground, lost inside their own shrunken universe

Hard to believe and this the same council that took two children away from a UKIP supporting foster family…

rotherham-ukipRotherham child sexual exploitation scandal

scandal refers to the existence of widespread child sexual abuse in the town of Rotherham, South Yorkshire, England, between 1997 and 2013, and its alleged cover-up.

Local investigations into the organised sexual exploitation of children in Rotherham began in the 1990s, although some reports were never finalised or made public by the authorities.[1] In 2010, five men of Pakistani heritage were found guilty of a series of sexual offences against girls as young as twelve.[2] A subsequent investigation by The Times reported that the child sex exploitation was much more widespread, and the Home Affairs Select Committee criticised the South Yorkshire Police force and Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council for their handling of the abuse. An independent inquiry into child sexual exploitation in Rotherham, led by Professor Alexis Jay, was established in 2013 for Rotherham Council.[3]

The Inquiry’s initial report was published on 26 August 2014 and condemned the failure of the authorities in Rotherham to act effectively against the abuse and even, in some cases, to acknowledge that it was taking place.[2][4][5] It conservatively estimated that 1,400 children had been sexually exploited in the town between 1997 and 2013, predominantly by gangs of British-Pakistani men. Abuses described by the report included abduction, rape, torture and sex trafficking of children.[5]

Members of the British-Pakistani community condemned both the sexual abuse and that it had been covered up for fear of “giving oxygen” to racism.[6] The leader of Rotherham Borough Council, Roger Stone, resigned, as did the council’s Chief Executive, Martin Kimber, and the director of children’s services, Joyce Thacker. Shaun Wright, the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for South Yorkshire who had been a Labour councillor in charge of child safety at the council, stood down on 16 September, after initially refusing demands that he should do so.[7] The Home Secretary, Theresa May, blamed the failure of the authorities in Rotherham on “institutionalised political correctness“,[8] and Denis MacShane, the former MP for Rotherham during the period covered by the report, admitted that he had been “guilty of doing too little” to investigate the extent of the sex crimes being committed in his constituency.[9] Independent inquiries were set up into the actions of both South Yorkshire Police and Rotherham Borough Council, to examine their roles in investigating the allegations, and their procedures and practices