Ex soldier left relying on foodbanks slams Cameron & Tories for abandoning war veterans #GE2015

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Infantryman Philip Wesley says the PM was happy to send soldiers into battle but has given them nothing back!

A former soldier has launched a stinging attack on David Cameron for failing to support war veterans.

Infantryman Philip Wesley says the PM was “happy” to send soldiers into battle but has given them “nothing back.”

The father-of-one says his life since leaving the Army has been one of food banks, low-paid work, soaring energy bills and expensive housing.

At every turn he has faced difficulties because of the policies of the Conservative-led government , he reveals.

Mr Wesley, 27, served five years in the Army including two tours of Afghanistan.

He had to leave in 2012 to look after his daughter Violet, now three-and-a-half.

On return to his home city of Birmingham, he found it impossible to get a council house for them to live in.

“I was laughed at. I waited two years for social housing.

“In the end the British Legion gave me the money for a deposit so I could rent privately,” he explains.

The problem was the bedroom tax. So many people hit by the bedroom tax had to move out of three-bedroom homes meaning there were not enough two-bed properties available for people such as Philip.

“To be honest with you I was expecting a lot more. I have had help from the British Legion but absolutely nothing from the MoD.

“The main issue for me was housing. I had nowhere to live and I was still at the very bottom of the list.

“There were no two bed homes that were suitable for me. It was crazy.”

His mother who has severe epilepsy has also been hit by the bedroom tax.

Because his house had no central heating he racked up a £700 electricity bill to heat the home for his daughter.

“I was alright, I put on coats but my daughter was cold,” he says matter of factly.

At one point he had to rely on foodbanks to feed his family.

“And that was when I was working,” he said.

“We are supposed to be one of the most developed countries in the world and we have people having to use foodbanks,” he adds in a video made for the Labour Party.

Mr Wesley is now studying for a computing degree at Birmingham Metropolitan University, even though this will cost him £9,000 a year in tuition fees.

While he is full of praise for the support he received from the British Legion, his verdict on Mr Cameron is damning.

“Whenever I hear David Cameron saying anything it makes my blood boil. The only thing David Cameron sees when he looks at the Armed Forces is money and how much it will cost him. It’s just all numbers to him,” he says.

And he says other veterans have experienced similar problems.

“He’s (Cameron) happy to throw us into these wars but we get nothing back. There are people who have done a hell of a lot for their country and I don’t think it’s been rewarded in the slightest,” he says.

In December, Mr Cameron praised the Armed Forces as Britain marked the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan.

“Everyone in this country is forever in your debt,” he said.

Labour’s Jack Dromey said: “A war hero who fought for his country has been let down by Cameron’s Britain.

“He thought he was returning to a country fit for heroes but at every turn they have made it more difficult for him and his family.

“Labour will abolish the bedroom tax that has hit Philip’s family hard.

“Labour will cut tuition fees by £3,000 so people like Philip can get on and Labour will never let our Armed Forces veteran down in this way.”

Paul Nuttall, Lacking In Hwyl, Declines To Translate #ukip Into Welsh … #GE2015 #BattleForNumber10

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Kippers Tell Welsh To Speak English at Meetings in Wales

(courtesy of Beastrabban\’s Weblog)

Paul Nuttall told hecklers at a meeting in Porthmadog that they should speak English at ukip meetings in Wales, “We are one country, the majority of people in Wales speak English, if people come here they should learn English.”

Mr Nuttall, a here today, gone tomorrow politician, might care to reflect on the words of a former Member of Parliament for the constituency in which Porthmadog stood when that Right Honourable Gentleman was alive:

“Two thousand years ago the great Empire of Rome came with its battalions and conquered that part of Caernarvonshire in which my constituency is situated.  They built walls and fortifications as the tokens of their conquest, and they proscribed the use of the Cymric tongue.  The other day I was glancing at the ruins of those walls.  Underneath I noted the children at play, and I could hear them speaking, with undiminished force and vigour, the proscribed language of the conquered nation.  Close by there was a school, where the language of the Roman conquerors was being taught, but taught as a dead language!”

The Welsh language is one of the languages of the British.  English is a mere stripling interloper in comparison.  May be it too will be taught as a dead language some day?

May I further suggest to Mr Nuttall that he study well the style of the Welsh Wizard, a man who knew how to handle hecklers with finesse.  One of his best retorts in his early days was to a Conservative who came to a Liberal meeting determined to stand no nonsense.  “We must give Home Rule,” declared David Lloyd George, “not only to Ireland, but to Scotland as well, and to Wales.”  “And Home Rule for Hell,” shouted a man in the audience.  “Quite right,” said Lloyd George; “let every person stick up for his own country.”

Good advice, Mr Nuttall, you speak up for your idea of your country and let the rest of us stick up for ours.  In doing so, you will be in line with ukip’s 2010 Manifesto commitment that “All cultures, languages and traditions from around the British Isles will be celebrated.”

ukip Deputy leader tells Welsh voters they should speak English if they come to Welsh ukip Meetings

ukip deputy leader in Porthmadog: “People…should learn English”

Anger as ukip chief says people moving to Wales should learn English

BBC News – ukip denies producing ‘jihadi’ benefits leaflet

ukip unveil its Anglesey candidate for general election (with dig at environmental business sector)

ukip Nutters

The Danczuks, Never Mind Quality Of Our ‘Facts’ Just Admire Our Rhetoric! 1/2 #GE2015 #RaceForNumber10

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“On immigration, Karen says Rochdale is at the “end of its tether”.  Simon adds: “The liberal intelligentsia, this north London liberal elite, don’t have to live with the problem.  Proportionally there are more asylum seekers in Rochdale than in London.”

The reason people should listen to them, they say, whether it is on child abuse or the problems of welfare, is that their views come from experience.  “If my mum had been forced to work and not live her life as a single parent on benefits, she would have had a job and friends and a better life, which would have benefited me,” Karen says.

And immigration?  A rich country like the UK should take in asylum seekers and economic migrants, Simon argues.  But Rochdale’s cheap housing makes it a magnet. “I do feel that the strains and stresses being put on a relatively small town is unfair.  It is all about fairness.” ”

We’ll keep telling it like it is on welfare, immigration and the liberal elite

Out of a population of 8,173,941 in London in 2011, 63% or 5,175,677 stated their country of birth as the United Kingdom (see first table).

Out of a population of 211,699 in Rochdale in 2011, 89% or 188,102 stated their country of birth as the United Kingdom (see second table).

See next post for details of the non-UK born short-term residents in both areas in 2011.

Country of Birth by Sex (2011 Census)

Units: Persons
Date 2011
Geography London
All persons Males Females
All categories: Country of birth 8,173,941 4,033,289 4,140,652
Europe: Total 6,174,371 3,063,095 3,111,276
Europe: United Kingdom: Total 5,175,677 2,589,406 2,586,271
Europe: United Kingdom: England 4,997,072 2,496,875 2,500,197
Europe: United Kingdom: Northern Ireland 32,774 16,847 15,927
Europe: United Kingdom: Scotland 89,527 47,279 42,248
Europe: United Kingdom: Wales 53,828 27,045 26,783
Europe: United Kingdom: Great Britain not otherwise specified 544 275 269
Europe: United Kingdom: United Kingdom not otherwise specified 1,932 1,085 847
Europe: Ireland 129,807 59,884 69,923
Europe: Other Europe: Total 868,887 413,805 455,082
Europe: Other Europe: EU countries: Total 711,133 338,198 372,935
Europe: Other Europe: EU countries: Member countries in March 2001 341,981 163,032 178,949
Europe: Other Europe: EU countries: Accession countries April 2001 to March 2011 369,152 175,166 193,986
Europe: Other Europe: Rest of Europe 157,754 75,607 82,147
Africa 621,613 295,781 325,832
Middle East and Asia 966,990 490,027 476,963
The Americas and the Caribbean 326,280 143,476 182,804
Antarctica, Oceania (including Australasia) and other 84,687 40,910 43,777

In order to protect against disclosure of personal information, records have been swapped between different geographic areas.  Some counts will be affected, particularly small counts at the lowest geographies.

Country of Birth by Sex (Census 2011)

Units: Persons

Date 2011
Geography Rochdale
All persons Males Females
All categories: Country of birth 211,699 103,642 108,057
Europe: Total 194,495 95,069 99,426
Europe: United Kingdom: Total 188,102 92,029 96,073
Europe: United Kingdom: England 184,354 90,231 94,123
Europe: United Kingdom: Northern Ireland 886 423 463
Europe: United Kingdom: Scotland 1,929 918 1,011
Europe: United Kingdom: Wales 915 449 466
Europe: United Kingdom: Great Britain not otherwise specified 4 3 1
Europe: United Kingdom: United Kingdom not otherwise specified 14 5 9
Europe: Ireland 1,852 825 1,027
Europe: Other Europe: Total 4,541 2,215 2,326
Europe: Other Europe: EU countries: Total 4,161 2,037 2,124
Europe: Other Europe: EU countries: Member countries in March 2001 1,447 672 775
Europe: Other Europe: EU countries: Accession countries April 2001 to March 2011 2,714 1,365 1,349
Europe: Other Europe: Rest of Europe 380 178 202
Africa 2,654 1,319 1,335
Middle East and Asia 13,883 6,901 6,982
The Americas and the Caribbean 497 252 245
Antarctica, Oceania (including Australasia) and other 170 101 69
In order to protect against disclosure of personal information, records have been swapped between different geographic areas.  Some counts will be affected, particularly small counts at the lowest geographies.

The Types of #ukip Activists and Politicians #GE2015

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ducksoap

UKIP is a raggedy concoction of the dregs and peripherals of society.  Its activists, councillors, MPs, MEPs, parliamentary and council candidates, and chairpersons of various propaganda subgroups are easily categorised by a finite list of types.

1) Tory careerists

Only a few MPs in the Tory party are able to acquire senior positions that lead to political celebrity and visibility, that subsequently lead to lucrative post-political career consultancy posts.  If a careerist wants to make the most dosh out of her or his election as an MP then occasional garbled nonsense from the backbenches is insufficient.UKIPRecklessCarswell

Reckless and Carswell had made little impact as Tory MPs; both were lost within the twitching blob several rows behind Cameron.  Reckless’ main claim to fame was his inability to open a door due to drunkenness.  In UKIP, both are out front, grinning stupidly next to Farage as if he and they have farted simultaneously, slobbering media jostling around…

View original post 972 more words

#ukip Out To Worsen Conditions Of UK Born Temporary (Farm) Workers! #GE2015 #RaceForNumber10

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In his often-quoted speech in 1909 on Second Reading of the Bill (that became the Trade Boards Act 1909), Winston Churchill, then President of the Board of Trade, explained that the Boards were necessary to ensure that workers received a living wage in industries where the bargaining strength of employers greatly outweighed that of employees:

“It is a serious national evil that any class of His Majesty’s subjects should receive less than a living wage in return for their utmost exertions. It was formerly supposed that the working of the laws of supply and demand would naturally regulate or eliminate that evil ……………. Where in the great staple trades in the country you have a powerful organisation on both sides, where you have responsible leaders able to bind their constituents to their decision, where that organisation is conjoint with an automatic scale of wages or arrangements for avoiding a deadlock by means of arbitration, there you have a healthy bargaining which increases the competitive power of the industry, enforces a progressive standard of life and the productive scale, and continually weaves capital and labour more closely together. But where you have what we call sweated trades, you have no organisation, no parity of bargaining, the good employer is undercut by the bad, and the bad employer is undercut by the worst; the worker, whose whole livelihood depends upon the industry, is undersold by the worker who only takes the trade up as a second string, his feebleness and ignorance generally renders the worker an easy prey to the tyranny of the masters and middle-men, only a step higher up the ladder than the worker, and held in the same relentless grip of forces – where those conditions prevail you have not a condition of progress, but a condition of progressive degeneration.”

The 1909 Act was the first national minimum wage legislation in Britain.  Churchill’s Boards were superseded by Wages Councils established under the Wages Council Act 1945.  Legislation introduced by a Liberal Government, built upon by a Labour Government leading to, amongst other things, the Agricultural Wages Act 1948.  The Wages Councils consisted of representatives from both sides of industry, together with independent members. They had the power to set detailed minimum rates of pay, including shift premia, for different age groups and types of worker as well as complex holiday entitlements relating to length of service.

At their peak, in 1953, (under a Conservative Government headed by Winston Churchill) there were 66 Wages Councils, covering about 3.5 million workers.

In March 1985, the Conservative Government, as part of its policy of deregulating the labour market, published a Consultation Paper which proposed that the Wages Councils should either be abolished altogether or radically reformed. There was considerable opposition to outright abolition, from employers as well as employees, and the Government opted for radical reform.

The Wages Act 1986 preserved the 26 Councils (down from 27 in 1981) then in existence but prevented any new ones from being established. It removed young workers under the age of 21 from the scope of the Wages Councils altogether and ended the Councils’ power to set minimum holiday entitlements, separate pay rates for different occupations, and premium rates for unsocial hours or shift work. As a result, Wages Councils were only able to set a minimum hourly basic rate; a minimum overtime rate; the number of hours after which overtime must be paid; and a daily limit on the amount an employer could charge for any living accommodation he provided. Employers who failed to pay these rates were liable to a fine and for arrears of wages underpaid. The law was enforced by Wages Inspectors employed by the Department of Employment, but their numbers were cut during the 1980s and early 1990s and they adopted a policy of ensuring that minimum rates were paid by persuasion rather than coercion. Prosecution was rare, despite many instances of underpayment.

In December 1988, the Government once again issued a Consultation Paper which suggested that the Councils should be abolished. The response did not reveal enormous support for abolition even from employers’ organisations; and, in March 1990, Michael Howard, then Secretary of State for Employment, announced that he had decided not to proceed with abolition “for the present”.

It remained Conservative policy that Wages Councils should have “no permanent place in the labour market.”  Although the Conservative Manifesto for the 1992 Election did not mention abolition, the Trade Union Reform and Employment Rights Bill, published on 5 November 1992, contained legislation repealing the Wages Councils altogether. Section 35 of the Act, which abolished the Councils, came into effect on 30 August 1993.

The only remaining area in which a minimum wage was enshrined in law after 30 August 1993 was agriculture. The Agricultural Wages Board, as indicated above, was established under separate legislation, the Agricultural Wages Act 1948. The government had considered abolishing this too, but, in the face of opposition from both sides of the agricultural industry, it backed down.

William Waldegrave, Secretary of State for Agriculture, announcing this decision, said, “It is clear from the responses to consultation that there is wide acceptance, from both sides of the agricultural industry of the present arrangements. We do not therefore currently intend to change the existing statutory framework. However, since the Government believe that statutory wage fixing arrangements can introduce flexibilities which prevent rather than encourage job creation, we shall continue to keep the future existence of the AWB under close review.”

After the Wages Councils were abolished, there was growing evidence of jobs being offered below the old minimum rates and little evidence of increased employment in the deregulated industries. For example, a Low Pay Network study, “After the Safety Net”, analysed almost 6,000 jobs offered at Jobcentres in the catering, retailing, clothing manufacturing and hairdressing sectors in April and May 1994. Over a third of the jobs on offer paid less than the old Wages Council rate uprated by inflation. In retailing, the figure was over 50%. The network also found a net loss of 18,000 jobs recorded in the retail and catering sectors between September 1993 and March 1994, despite the removal of minimum wages.

See Research Note 92/75 on “Wages Councils”, Research Note 92/95 on the “Trade Union Reform and Employment Rights Bill 1992/3” and Research Paper 95/7 “A Minimum Wage”.

Between 1993 and the introduction of the NMW, only the AWB set pay rates for any group of workers in the UK work force.  The NMW when enacted covered many more workers than the Wages Councils, but did not replace the AWB which continued to set rates above those set by the NMW.

Of course, ukip, unlike all the other major political parties has yet to commit to increases in the National Minimum Wage and/or call for employers to pay the Living Wage.  In fact, ukip has yet to say whether or not it stands by its previous view that the NMW should be repealed.

ukip has said it will repeal the Agency Workers Directive (see Employment and Small Businesses) that, enacted in UK law as the Agency Workers Regulations 2010, seeks to level the playing field between temporary/agency workers and permanent employees.

I guess ukip thinks all the working people for whom they claim to speak, including agricultural workers, are in permanent employment?  In addition, on taking power, ukip would review all legislation and regulations from the EU and remove those which hamper British prosperity and competitiveness (see Protecting Jobs and Increasing Prosperity).

Given ukip’s commitment to repeal the Agency Workers Directive, is it not reasonable to assume that other employment legislation, including Health and Safety laws will be repealed so as not to hamper British prosperity and competitiveness?

Check out my next blog post to learn why I have made particular reference above to the Agricultural Wages Board!

PS Municipal regulation of wage levels began in some towns in 1524 and I do not think, were he alive today, that Churchill would be a member of ukip.