Just who are these folk?

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Have your say

It’s election time again. Ten candidates have been put up in Batley, only two we know.

How can we compare these peole if we don’t know everything about them like photos, their CVs and their policies?

Don’t say: “Look on the internet,” as not everyone has that.
Over the last few weeks only Labour has called to see us. We never know the other parties, no wonder people don’t vote.
I’ve no idea what to do about the EU election. Lots are asking the same question.

Pat Crisp

Community Rights Campaigner
Cross Bank Raod
Batley

health service

Is NHS in safe hands?

Are you confused by the conflicting reports about the Health Service? Will the government’s drive for fewer hospitals and greater privatisation of health service delivery really be so good for us? How many private companies are involved in delivering health services anyway? Did you know that the English health service is now very different from that in Scotland and Wales? 
Do you believe Andy Burnham’s headline in the Independent that the NHS could be ‘carved open’ by healthcare profiteers? (It is true by the way.) Do you believe his remedy?

Have you heard the rumour that the NHS is ‘unsustainable’? If you hear it again remember this: a child buying a bar of chocolate is paying more UK tax than the company named after a huge river in South America!

If any of these issues concern you and you would like to learn more and find out how you can help protect the NHS, the new branch of Keep Our NHS Public starting in Dewsbury, may be for you.

We met this week at The Women’s Centre, 7 Wellington Street, Dewsbury WF13 1LY and will be holding further meetings to which new people are welcome.

Our parents and grandparents fought for the NHS and it has been denigrated enough! The NHS should be there for you and you are worth it.

Christine Hyde

Scarr End Lane

Dewsbury

housing

It’s time to wake up

Do you live in Batley, or rather Soothill? Wake up, Kirklees are planning to give you 2,000 more homes up from the Babes in the Wood!

That’s the SHLAA (Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment) Site Report 213/4 & 223. Those are the strips of land up from opposite the vets and the field at Manor Farm Drive then all the fields from Lydgate to Leeds Road!

Wake up! Respond to Kirklees Local Plan Early Engagement report. Don’t wait until you see the planning notices – by then it will be too late as the build will be agreed in principle.

You should know the grounds: Employment, population and the SHLAA statement that more than 13,000 houses can be built on brownfield sites that covers next seven years.

Houses here won’t be ‘affordable housing’ they will be executive homes for Leeds workers to meet SHMA requirements and remember your Labour/Lib Dem Councillors have form, they won’t stop it.

Wake up! You pay your taxes, If this was an item from a supermarket you would be complaining, not thinking there was nothing you can d0 - there is!

Derek Cartwright

Manor Farm Drive

Soothill

Batley

eelction day

Let law take its course

I feel as candidate for Dewsbury South in this year’s local elections I must give my reasons why I will not be signing the Conservative pledge.

You could say I came into politics late in life as I had no real political persuasion growing up I was guilty of not even voting some years. One day driving to work I stopped and saw the neglect and lack of investment.

I got involved in local decision making, petitioning the council on behalf of residents and with the help of locals we put locals first no matter what party politics.

Then I started to see the party political hatred between the parties that make up the council, was quite evident at some meetings. So if you don’t mind I will stay out of signing up to a pledge that has no legal justification, as I have already consented to the Representation of the People Act 1983, which was passed by a act of Parliament made up of different parties, not one political party. I will put my trust in Kirklees electoral service whom over the years have conducted the elections within the rules of this Act.

I also trust the police will collect any evidence if allegations of voter fraud are reported, and they will follow their oath to keep the peace come election day.

With three warnings at the last elections and no prosecutions I see no evidence of widespread voter fraud and I will not be drawn into labelling a whole community just by the actions of a small minority. Neither will I be embroiled in party finger pointing. People first in a local elections politics second.

Shaun Maddox

English Democrat candidate for Dewsbury South

Valley Road

Thornhill

politics

Let’s keep it clean!

It came as a surprise to us at North Kirklees Green Party to read of the Conservatives’ “Keep It Clean” pledge in your paper last week. Not only had they neglected to contact us beforehand, but their pledge seems at odds with their previous actions. At a candidates briefing at Dewsbury Town Hall last Monday Mr Iqbal denounced the Local Code of Conduct introduced by Kirklees Council this year, telling the room he wanted nothing to do with it, even though local party leaders were involved in its creation. Similarly at a national level the Conservative led Government has had ample time since the 2010 election to implement real reforms to our democratic system by adopting recommendations put forward to it by the independent Electoral Commission. For some reason the Tories seem happy with the status quo, as the majority of these proposed reforms have not been implemented. Perhaps Mr Iqbal and friends should be channelling some of their zealous reforming energy upwards within their own party. Meanwhile, your local Green Party candidates across the whole of Kirklees will of course be signing up to the Local Code of Conduct, and - as always - keeping it clean.

Simon Cope

Green Party Candidate for Dewsbury West

Wormalds View

Dewsbury

Vote counting

Vote fraud is a big issue

I’m writing in support of all three Dewsbury Conservative Candidates and their “Keep It Clean” initiative. For many years at election time, Dewsbury has been blighted with reports of postal vote fraud and voter intimidation, so it is quite right these issues should be taken seriously to protect our democracy. I was troubled, however, by Kirklees Council Chief Executive and the Returning Officer for upcoming elections, Adrian Lythgo’s comments that he had not been presented with any evidence of widespread electoral fraud in his time at the council.

I understand that three people were cautioned by police as part of an investigation into electoral fraud in Dewsbury after the 2012 council election and that Kirkless Council is one of only 16 councils being closely monitored nationwide by the Electoral Commission to try ensure elections are free and fair this time around. Is that not evidence enough?

I feel that Mr Lythgo’s response smacks of complacency.

It is therefore down to candidates from all parties to show their support for democracy. I hope that all candidates can put their political differences to one side and sign the pledge drafted up by the Conservatives. That way, it might make these elections the fairest yet and eradicate the need for future scrutiny by the Electoral Commission.

Philip Tolson,

Elmwood Close,

Upper Hopton,

Mirfield

Elections

Restoring voter faith

I am pleased to see an initiative has been set up to encourage all candidates in the upcoming local elections adhere to the law with regards to electoral fraud and voter intimidation. This is a positive move and is the first step in restoring the confidence of voters in believing the local elections are fair. Regardless of whether you believe the allegations of electoral fraud and voter intimidation, there is no reason any candidate should not pledge their support. I suspect there will not be a resident in Dewsbury that would understand why any candidate should not wish to show their support against the undermining of the democratic process.

Christopher Walker

Wells Road

Thornhill

Dewsbury