Tuesday 29 November 2011

Feltham & Heston By-Election

At long Last London Voters have the chance to vote for a real alternative, to the 3 main stream political groups, that gave up on representing the interests of the working Class years ago. At a meeting held last night, it was agreed that Lewisham People Before Profit, would put forward a candidate on the People before profit agenda, Campaigning in support of Public sector workers, to see investment in house building, and capital expenditure to give people real long term jobs. to see Council estates and public buildings used to generate green energy to cut back on fuel poverty, to see a programme of building new council homes to deal, with a very real housing shortage, and to see the huge numbers of jobs this would bring,. it must be better to have people in work, paying tax, THAN A NATION OF WORKERS ON BENIFIT.. . We also are looking ahead to the GLA elections next May, and with PR, we have a real chance across London to win seats on the GLA.Our Candidate is the economist George Hallam. He will play a very pro active campaign, seeking to build a new grouping in Feltham and Heston, and to use the publicity to build People before profit Campaign groups across London and were ever people are looking to build a real alternative. At this election voters will have the choice of voting for 3 main political groups, none of which are willing to come out and Support the 2 miilion people who will lose a days pay to stand up against the Goverment. It is to the Labour partys shame, that we are having to put forward a candidate who will put people before the interests of big business.. Voters can vote for something very different.. if you can help with our campaign, make a donation, or would be interested in building a people before profit campaign group in your area, please email me.Further details on our party website;www.lpbp.org.uk

Thursday 17 November 2011

Poverty..Who Cares?

What does it take to make you angry? I do not think I am alone in being disgusted at the story in this week's news, in which an elderly couple just gave up and killed themselves after spending 18 months trying to sort out the disability allowance to which they were entitled. They were living in one room because they were unable to heat their house and were walking 6 miles a day to get a food parcel because they had no money for the bus fare. In the same month a young person who was unable to pay their tuition fees threw themselves under a train. The growing despair that the worsening financial situation is causing is simply terrifying. It is clear that the three main political parties have become the parties of Big Business. I would not have thought that in my lifetime I would see a Labour Party sacking staff en masse as they rush to privatise local services and close libraries that are the last remaining and crucial public space for all local people, whatever their income. Labour's record is truly shocking, as is their current failure to back the thousands of teachers and public sector workers who are considering striking for a decent pension. We have all seen the appalling reports in the media about the poor care being provided by the NHS in certain areas. If you listen to management consultants rather than medical experts, if you sack full-time nurses and rely increasingly on agency staff, what do you expect? How can you expect a ward of 390 very ill people to get the care they deserve from just 1 ward nurse? If ever you should make a stand, it is NOW. Please get ANGRY and ACTIVE. Come to Lewisham People Before Profit's next meeting. These are held on the first Monday in every month at 7pm at Come the Revolution Cafe. Please support us in any way you can. You can make a donation, you can visit our cafe, or you can e-mail us your support. Please start voting for people who care about you and our community. Bad times are HERE FOR REAL. We must stand together, we must campaign together, and we must help the thousands around us who are in great need. E-mail: raymondwoolford@aol.com

Green Jobs Coming to Lewisham Deptford and New Cross

The Good News We should get funding for People Before Profit Energy Solutions so our plans to create jobs in New Cross and Deptford by training local residents in traditional trade skills and the installation of home insulation are certain to happen in the new year. We have already made an application for a full-time worker and are presently working on being in a position to announce our job-creation scheme in the new year. If you are interested, please e-mail Ray Woolford for more details at raymondwoolford@aol.com.

Londons Best Cafe, Tea Room and Coffee Bar/Gallery

Your Cafe Needs You! Come the Revolution offers tea and crumpet for just £1 and a hot meal every day for just £2. It provides free Wi-Fi, a gallery space, a book exchange, free meeting space for local groups and campaigns, and the best drinks and food in the area. It also gives jobs to local people and helps to keep money in our community. Any profit the cafe makes is used to support community campaigns. There is a free advice surgery every Friday at 12, a free one-to-one CV workshop with Ray Woolford, a cookery school, a Mum and Children's Group every day from 9.30 am, and a Critical Thinking group every Tuesday at 11am. We are doing a good job but, as we receive no funding, we are having a really tough time. This project is about supporting local people, helping the most vulnerable residents, and giving people healthy food at bargain prices, but we can only stay open if people come and have their breakfast or lunch with us, or just morning coffee or afternoon tea. This is a wonderful, comfortable place with welcoming and helpful staff. Our gallery wall presently displays a collection of portraits of local residents by award-winning portrait photographer Peter Jones, which reveals the great richness and diversity of our local community. Please help us to make this cafe a success. We want to open longer and create more jobs for local people, but we can only do this if local people come to the Cafe, buy takeaway tea or coffee, or hold meetings, functions, parties etc. in this valuable and much-needed community space.

Utility bills Protest.. Stopped by Big Business

Biggest Consumer Protest In History Stopped By Big Business As readers may be aware, we have set up a Green Project to force down fuel prices, to look at ways of producing green energy locally, and to create long-term local jobs in an area with massive unemployment. We had planned to organise a day of action to get 100,000 people to switch energy suppliers in protest at the excessive profits the energy companies are making from us. The plan was to have 100,000 people sign up to switch energy supplier en bloc, which would mean we could negotiate to buy gas and electricity at near to wholesale prices. This was to be our first action in seeking to tackle local fuel poverty. (We eventually plan to produce our own local green energy.) The government has been encouraging consumers to organise and buy their own wholesale energy and said that ours was a very promising scheme. We had already engaged a logistics company and had arranged a press launch, but just two weeks before this was set to happen, the utilities companies refused to do business with us on the grounds that they do not like the tone of our campaign and felt that we would undermine their business. This is an outrage and a frontal attack on consumer choice. Nevertheless, we are determined to carry on the fight to bring down fuel bills and ensure that local consumers and not-for-profit groups are allowed to offer discount fuel.

Labour Councillors in Lewisham

Labour Abandons Advice Surgeries and Councillors Go AWOL Local councillors clearly expect to be kicked out en masse from New Cross and Deptford at the next local elections Labour councillors Long and Padmore are presently raking in over £10,000 a year for attending just 1 meeting every 6 months. In fact, as you can see on Lewisham Council's own website, they have the worst attendance record on the council, but they are happy enough to take the money, money that YOU pay them. Local residents are also complaining that Labour councillors are no longer holding advice surgeries, which is one of the reasons why Ray Woolford is holding a free help and advice surgery every Friday at 12 at Come the Revolution Cafe. If Labour councillors cannot be bothered to show up for advice surgeries, if they have no interest in community action campaigns for jobs, housing, schools and libraries, then what on earth are they doing on the council? They should all resign and let local people elect councillors who will do the job properly, who will stand up and fight for local people. After 13 years of a Labour government, with a Labour council and 3 Labour MPs, we have the highest level of youth unemployment in the UK, and every time we have a chance to create local jobs, build new council homes, and provide more school places, our Labour Council supports the Big Business builders of luxury developments, consistently putting private greed before community need. The Labour Party in Lewisham consistently acts against the interests of the residents who have voted Labour and it is time that residents in New Cross and Deptford finally wake up to this and vote for Lewisham People Before Profit in future.

Local Rents massive increase call for rent freeze

Local Rents at Record High The average rental in Deptford and New Cross is now £200 per week, while a 2 bed flat costs £250 -£400 per week and 3-4 bed flats start at £400 per week, and this is in an area where the average wage is just £24,500 per year. When the new Universal Credit comes in next year and councils are told to charge 80% of market rent for all new council tenants, we will be in the bizarre position of seeing the 17.0000 people in most need on Lewisham's housing list unable to get a council flat because they cannot afford it! Even more alarming are Labour's plans only to give council flats to people who are working. What about residents who are pensioners, disabled, in education, or recently unemployed? In the meantime, council rents have already increased by over 100% since Labour have been running (or failing to run) Lewisham. It really is no surprise that council tenants are talking about rent strikes as they are already unable to keep up with the recent increases. Lewisham People Before Profit continues to campaign to have local empty council buildings turned into new council homes or housing co-ops, to oppose the sell-off of land and other buildings which are needed to meet the rising demand for housing, and to battle with Lewisham Council with respect to new developments, where we insist that they must include the full 35% of social housing. We also demand that, when a builder gets planning consent, they include a sufficient proportion of homes that are genuinely affordable by local people who earn an average wage of £24,500, and that the council actually does something to deal with overcrowded homes, to enable house swaps and to free up larger properties for families.

Local Heroes, John Hamilton and Barbara Raymond

Barbara Raymond, John Hamilton, and Peter and Pat Richards Local Heroes up for Major Community Awards Lewisham People Before Profit campaigners have been nominated for The South London Press Community Awards for the huge amount of community work they do tirelessly on behalf of local people. Barbara has been an active, effective and deeply committed community campaigner for decades; John Hamilton was Lewisham People Before Profit's mayoral candidate at the last local elections and has been at the forefront of community action across Lewisham and South London for years, as well as being a founder member of Lewisham People Before Profit; Peter and Pat Richards have campaigned tirelessly at local, national and government levels to save our Libraries from cuts and closures. As far as we are concerned, they are all heroes and local treasures. We wish them the very best in the upcoming awards.

Jobs for Deptford & New Cross

20:1 Jobs Campaign Many of you may have seen our campaign teams across Lewisham recently. We are seeking to highlight the fact that in Lewisham there are 20 people looking for a job for every 1 job vacancy and the dysfunctional nature of a local economy and council that fails to invest in and capitalise on its greatest asset, hardworking local people. (In Lewisham our Labour council has sacked so many staff that they are having to pay agencies for temps!) Come to Come the Revolution Café, 467 New Cross Road to sign our campaign's Giant CV, which clearly reveals what a tremendously talented and skilled local population we have, and that is why Lewisham People Before Profit continues to challenge Labour and demand that local long-term jobs and homes that local people can afford should be put before the short term interests of the many developers who are looking to make a quick buck in Lewisham. After the huge Labour landslide at the last local elections, Labour politicians are simply putting the interests of Big Business first and essentially treating the local people who voted for them with contempt. Local councillors are failing to show up for Council meetings and in certain wards advice surgeries are not being held, but these councillors are more than happy to collect thousands of pounds of local tax payers' money for doing next to nothing. Let's hope that in the next round of elections local people wake up and award this rotten Labour Council the Order of the Boot!

Deptford Betting Shop Up Date

Betting Shop Number 13 For Deptford High Street Goes to Appeal. Object TODAY! Despite the success of a long campaign to stop a 13th betting shop from opening in Deptford, the victory has been short lived as the owners of the betting shop have submitted a new planning application. This means that we all need to object to it all over again. Barbara Raymond has organised a petition, which you can sign at Come the Revolution Café at 467 New Cross Road, Deptford. You can also lodge your complaint with Lewisham Planning office directly by e-mailing them at: planning@lewisham.gov.uk. REMEMBER: You must use the planning reference number when making your objection, which is DC/11/78506. You will not be able to object after the first week in December, so please get everyone you can to write in and object.

Convoy wharf latest update

Convoy Wharf Huge plan to create hundreds of local long-term jobs Ray Woolford and other supporters of Lewisham People before Profit have submitted proposals to the developer of the Convoy Wharf site, which, if they are approved, will create hundreds of long-term local jobs. The proposal contains a business plan to use the protected wharfs to create a green energy site that could generate green energy to fuel up to 8000 homes in Deptford and New Cross. The wharfs themselves would serve as a training centre to train local residents as carpenters, plumbers, electricians, and qualified installers of home insulation, who will soon be in great demand once the government's new green deal agenda passes into law next year. The plan also includes the creation of a local Maritime History Museum, which, as a major tourist attraction, will boost jobs and the wider local economy while protecting and preserving the site's historical importance. Another branch of the Come the Revolution community cafe will open on the site, together with a state of the art cookery school and a green energy store that will provide all you need to inform yourself about and to start using and even generating green energy. This realistic and viable plan will provide tremendous benefits for the local community but it needs the support of Lewisham's Labour Council if it is going to happen. So far the Labour council's only comment on these plans is that they are 'interesting' while they continue to allow the development of luxury apartment blocks throughout the borough and neglect the real need for the creation of more local long-term jobs and more affordable housing as part of a responsible, just and sustainable approach to the stimulation and maintenance of the local economies and communities. The proposals outlined above would not cost the tax payer a penny as government funding is already available, and they will generate real incomes and benefits for local residents and the local economy. We have already offered to trial a free insulation programme and green energy initiative on any Lewisham Council estate to demonstrate how fuel costs can be drastically reduced and fuel poverty can be successfully tackled. But Labour Lewisham, ever the friend of Big Business and indifferent to interests of those it was elected to serve, was not willing to allow local people get cost receive these benefits. At the last local elections, Lewisham People before Profit proposed a cable car to link Deptford High Street with Convoy Wharf and Canary Wharf, but Labour Lewisham and our third-rate MP dismissed the idea as fanciful and unrealistic. Boris, however, loved the idea, though, due to Lewisham Council's customary lack of vision, the cable car will be built in Greenwich. We also proposed a ship school for the Convoy site, which was responsibly coasted at £6 million would have been ready within 11 months. But sadly Lewisham People before Profit did not win the local elections, so profit continues to be put before local people who continue to suffer from real school crises and a lack of proper investment in the area.