Politicians are often accused of being out of touch with the rest of the country and in many ways that was proven to be correct both locally and nationally last week. I voted to reduce the amount of Foreign Aid we pay in from 0.7% of GDP to 0.5% and fortunately the vote passed. Locally the leader of the Ashfield Independents disagreed with my decision by stating it was ‘short-sighted’ but my job is to represent the people of Ashfield and Eastwood not local politicians who are out of touch with the electorate or MPs who are stuck in the ‘Westminster Bubble’.
We have a simple choice to make, we either invest heavily in our own country to create jobs to strengthen the economy as we emerge from Covid or we can take a different path which will see us give money away that we simply do not have. I say charity begins at home and when we get back on our feet, we can look at the situation again.
This week in Parliament sees the much-awaited Borders Bill which will put a stop to the illegal Channel crossings. Let’s be clear, these young men crossing the Channel are not fleeing some war-torn country as the last time I looked France was a safe country. The people crossing are economic migrants who are paying vast sums of money to people traffickers on the promise of a better life in the UK and who can blame them? But the UK has become a soft touch as our Asylum laws are not fit for purpose and this new legislation will put right all the wrongs of previous years. It will stop people from claiming Asylum in the UK if they have passed through a safe country and I suspect most people in Ashfield will support this move.
You may recall a few weeks ago that ADC’s new private Environmental Enforcement Team apprehended a deaf 80 year man in Sutton who dropped a sweet wrapper whilst taking a face mask out of his coat pocket, he was given a 100 quid fine for littering.
Last week I went to see a lady in Kirkby called Carole who is the latest victim of ADC’s Environmental Enforcement Team, whilst on her hands and knees weeding her front garden she carefully placed two carrier bags of weeks in front of her front gate ready to go into the dustbin. Within seconds a large burly enforcement officer leaped out and dished out another 100 quid fine for fly tipping. No pensioner is safe from the claws of these overzealous Jobsworths who are more interested in making large amounts of money than keeping our district clean. If they are really bothered about our area, then they should take a trip down Outram Street and sort out all the litter and filth that has become synonymous with the area. I will appeal this latest fine and if ADC do not rescind it then I will pay it myself.