Section: East Midlands

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Local versus Serco

Simon Ferrigno & Lindsay Neil

The national contact tracing system designed to identify and trace those who have been in contact with people infected by Covid-19 continuously failed, but government has continued to pour money into it at the expense of local contact tracing, a responsibility of local government. What is the situation in the East Midlands?

Lone parenting in the Leicester lockdown: cyberbullying

Ngozi Eneh

Close observation might reveal some emotions like laughter, anger, upset or sadness when using their device. If your child is swift to hide their screen or device when you are close by, that is another sign not to ignore. Other signs include withdrawal from others, depression, constant closing and reopening of new social media accounts, loss of interest in people or activities, avoiding all forms of socialising, even ones previously enjoyed.

Open letter to East Midlands MPs

Hania Orszulik

Given the magnitude of this issue, it is essential that all MPs hold the government to this commitment to the British people, as stated on page 5 of the 2019 Conservative election manifesto: “Our deal… puts the whole country on a path to a new free trade agreement with the EU. This will be a new relationship based on free trade and friendly cooperation”.

Ashfield deserves better than Lee Anderson

Anna Girolami

While we wish Mr Anderson a speedy recovery, it does occur to us to wonder if perhaps he could take a little more care. The pictures in the press of his meeting with Johnson last week showed them standing close together with nary a mask between them.

Brexit economic downturn expected to hit East Midlands hard

EM Bylines Team

Is the East Midlands on a poverty slide? New research from KPMG is revealing that coronavirus and Brexit-induced economic problems are likely to have a particularly serious impact on the East Midlands next year, if the Brexit deal, currently being negotiated by the government, is not sufficiently far-reaching. Unemployment, cuts in income and price rises […]

Can Chesterfield be plastic-free?

EM Bylines Team

Chesterfield Borough Council backed going plastic free in 2019 under its climate change policy, having declared a climate emergency in April last year.  It is a move with cross-party support that is currently being pushed again by the Liberal Democrats, whose Glynis Falconer is taking over the mayoralty. (The Borough is Labour controlled). They are […]

Farmers feel abandoned by the Tories

Phil Bennion

In a Farmers Weekly poll last week 98 per cent of respondents had the view that the government does not have farmers’ best interests at heart. Considering that the overwhelming majority of farmers usually vote Tory, this is a resounding condemnation of government policy. The combination of government positions on the Agriculture Bill and the […]

Tractor rally in Melton Mowbray

EM Bylines Team

Melton Mowbray will be full of tractors tomorrow morning (Thursday 29 October) as a ‘socially distanced demonstration’ takes place starting at the cattle market at around 11am. Supporters have been asked to stand outside Ye Olde Pie Shoppe on Nottingham Street from 11:15am for photographs. The ‘Save British Farming’ campaign represents farmers, consumers and members of […]

East Mids MPs won’t help hungry children

EM Bylines Team

The Bylines team was shown this list of MPs and their expenses: http://MPsAgainstFreeSchoolMeals.com It is a list of all MPs who voted against free school meals for children who need them, during school breaks. The vote took place in the House of Commons on 21 October during an opposition day debate. Nicky Morgan, now a […]

The East Midlands says no to no deal!

EM Bylines Team

Best for Britain (with other organisations) asked FocalData to conduct regional research on a no deal Brexit showing that there is very clearly no mandate for a no deal in any part of Britain. This includes the East Midlands which was one of the largest ‘Leave’ areas in the 2016 referendum. Their fieldwork was conducted […]

A view from the street: proposed reforms to the planning system

Carolyn Thornborow

This photograph shows the first (and often only) notice that most of us ever have of a planning application in our neighbourhood. It’s an A4 piece of paper tied to a lamppost with a bit of string, at roughly the level of most people’s eyesight. But for how much longer? The authors of the government’s […]

HS2: Is your train delayed indefinitely?

David Rae

The construction of Britain’s second high-speed rail line from London to Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds and the North is as divisive as Brexit.  Supporters of HS2 view it as progressive investment in rapid, efficient, high-capacity safe travel. Others condemn its escalating costs, environmental impact and now its redundancy with pandemic-emptied trains. The ‘Eastern Leg’ of HS2 […]

Hopelessly hooked

Richard Parker

A few weeks ago I asked on Twitter, “Should we treat cars in the same way we treat cigarettes?”  It produced some interesting comments such as: “We should limit the design of cars as we do tobacco packaging: small, grey boxes with a top speed of 40mph and a giant health warning”. “Marketing is making […]

Not united over unitary authorities

EM Bylines Team

It is alleged that a new democratic deficit could be arising in many of our local communities with already-delayed council elections (2020) possibly being put back until 2023 due to reorganisation (see letter below). There is also a feeling amongst smaller political parties and independent councillors that yet another ‘power grab’ is going on by […]

Leicester, Xinjiang

Simon Ferrigno

forgotten lands on the frontiers of textiles As the US implements a partial ban on cotton from the Xinjiang region of China because of concerns over forced labour and even genocide, recent scandals about low wages and insecure employment in Leicester’s textiles sector seem to have dropped off the radar. But both are symptomatic of […]

Feeling unsettled

Carolyn Brown

All of us must know someone who is an EU citizen living in the UK whether it is a family member, friend, colleague or neighbour. The latest Home Office EU Settlement Scheme statistics reveal that 4,600 people have been refused settled status while 1,475,500 have only been granted temporary ‘Pre-Settled Status’ and 212,400 are still […]

Loving badgers

Sally Johnston

My love of badgers began when I was seven on finding a badger’s skull in a Derbyshire wood near my home. I could not have been more excited had I discovered a brontosaurus. In wonder, I stroked the large sagittal crest and carefully manipulated the non-detachable lower jaw. Immediately I felt a transcendental interconnectedness, an […]

A bucketful of challenges: lone parenting in the Leicester lockdown

Ngozi Eneh

If parenting is serious business, then single parenting in a lockdown is beyond serious… “Oh dear!” Meera lamented, staring at the wall clock and glancing quickly at the state of disarray in the living room. She had spent the entire afternoon assisting her two kids in their online lessons. Meera, a single mother and international […]

Leicestershire needs a ‘Green Recovery’

Rosie Lindsay

Covid-19 changed the world. What happens next will change our future and the time to act is now. At this moment, governments are drawing up investment plans on an extraordinary scale with billions of pounds expected to be pumped into reviving the economy. However, worldwide pleas of caution are being issued to governments not to […]

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