Labour SYPCC Shaun Wright Visits Birley Ward

Labour South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner Candidate Shaun Wright Visits Birley Ward
Labour South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner Candidate Shaun Wright and Councillor Denise Fox Discuss Crime Priorities with a Birley Ward Resident

On Saturday, Labour’s candidate for the vital post of South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner visited Birley Ward. Shaun Wright joined Councillor Bryan Lodge, Councillor Denise Fox, Councillor Harry Harpham and Birley Ward Labour Party Secretary Mike Drabble in touring Basegreen, where he talked to residents about their crime priorities.

Over the course of the morning many vigorous doorstep discussions took place, with residents leaving Shaun in no doubt as to the  issues the police should focus on. Shaun went away with a clear idea of their concerns – including anti-social behaviour, burglaries and the impact of drugs on communities – and pledged to do his best to address them if elected. He said:

“Visiting areas such as Basegreen is extremely valuable: there’s no substitute for talking to people and learning their views on how crime affects them. Unlike the other candidates, if elected I’ll make sure I continue to listen to the people to ensure South Yorkshire Police is not only a model of efficient policing but a force that is totally responsive to the needs of the community it serves.”

Having spent time with Shaun during his campaign, we at Birley Labour Party have no hesitation in urging all inhabitants of South Yorkshire to vote for him on November 15th. He is the only candidate for South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner that will defend front-line policing, oppose privatisation of our police force, and ensure that the police serve the interests of each and every community across the county.

The Labour Party to Deliver a Living Wage for Sheffield

Sheffield Town Hall
Sheffield Town Hall

Low-paid workers in Sheffield have received a boost with the news that the Sheffield Labour Party are supporting the campaign for a living wage. Changes being proposed by Sheffield Labour Group will see a Living Wage being brought in at Sheffield City Council, with council workers being paid a minimum of £7.20 per hour from April 2013. Over 250 staff are in line to benefit from this wage increase, and the projected cost of £700,000 will be more than offset by £1,000,000 savings made by reductions to senior management.

A Living Wage is not just great news for these low-paid workers and their families; it is also great news for Sheffield as a whole . If, as Sheffield Labour Party hopes, the example set is followed by private sector employers the increased spending power in the hands of families across the city would result in a significant boost for the local economy.

This proposal is set to debated at next week’s full council meeting. Let’s hope for the sake of hard-working council employees that the Lib Dems don’t adopt their usual position of opposition for the sake of it!

Labour Leader of Sheffield City Council, Councillor Julie Dore, said:

“A Sheffield Living Wage would help to reduce poverty in this city and I believe it is important that the council leads by example in this area, which is why I am committed to making sure that next year all council staff will receive a living wage. By implementing the Living Wage no one will earn less than £7.20 per hour in the council and we will work with employers across the city in other parts of the public sector as well as the private and voluntary sectors to make sure that this has a big impact across the city. It is the poorest who are being hit hardest by the Government’s failure to grow the economy, this is an achievable, pragmatic way of supporting people on low incomes across the city and I am pleased that we are able to take it forward.”

The public services union Unison have been at the forefront of the nationwide Living Wage campaign. Their Sheffield Organiser Dean Harper said:

“Unison have campaigned for a Living Wage and we are delighted that Labour are delivering this in Sheffield. Only yesterday we learned that one in five workers in the UK earn less than the living wage and we believe it’s vital that this is tacked. People on the lowest incomes are being hit hardest by rising prices, the increased cost of living and the double dip recession caused by the Tory Government. It is important that the council leads the way in this and makes sure that everyone earns a fair income.”

Public Q&A with South Yorkshire PCC Candidates – Monday 5th November

Sheffield First Partnership, The Star and Sheffield for Democracy invite you to attend a public question and answer session with the candidates for the post of Police & Crime Commissioner for South Yorkshire on Monday 5th November 2012, 5.00 – 7.00 pm.

The candidates speaking are:

  • Shaun Wright (Labour)
  • Nigel Bonson (Conservative)
  • Robert Teal (Liberal Democrat)
  • Jonathan Arnott (UKIP)
  • David Allen (English Democrats)

This event will take place at:

Peak Lecture Theatre
The Owen Building
Sheffield Hallam University
Howard Street
S1 1WB

For any queries regarding this event, please email or call 0114 273 5822.

Slippy pathway cleared on Jaunty Avenue

Your local Labour Councillors were out recently in the Basegreen area delivering leaflets on the Police Crime Commissioner and our support for Shaun Wright. We spoke to a resident in the flats on Jaunty Avenue who reported how slippy the pathway along the bottom of the flats was due to moss growing on the block paving. Councillors reported this to Sheffield Homes and we were pleased to be informed earlier this week that the Estate Officers did some work removing the moss from this area.

If you have anything you would like to discuss with your local councillors please get in touch with anyone of us and we will do our best to help.

Thank you for the planned 20 mph Zone

Thank you to the resident on Arnold Avenue who contacted us after receiving the leaflet from the local Labour Councillors on the work being undertaken in the Charnock area and the Police Crime Commissioner. The resident commented as follows “Can I just say thank you to you and your partner agencies for the planned 20 mph zone that is planned for our estate. I have lived on Charnock on and off for the last 52 years. And since moving back here 12 years ago I have been shocked at how busy the road through the estate from the top of Bowman to White Lane has now become. As a parent of 4 children ranging from age of 6 to 26 I am disgusted at the speed at which some people drive. This is a great bit of work you have done and I look forward to the new zone being put in place. I just wanted to say Thank You to everyone involved in this project.”

If you have anything you would like to discuss with your local councillors please get in touch with anyone of us and we will do our best to help.

Labour’s South Yorkshire Police and Crime and Commissioner Candidate Shaun Wright in Birley Ward This Saturday

Shaun Wright Labour Candidate for South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner
Shaun Wright Labour Candidate for South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner

The campaign to elect South Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner is gathering pace, with the election being held on Thursday 15th November: that’s three weeks away. Given the lacerating cuts the coalition is inflicting on the people of South Yorkshire, it’s essential that the Labour Party candidate is elected.

As a long-serving Rotherham councillor and Vice Chairman of the South Yorkshire Police Authority, Shaun Wright has the history of public service, qualifications and experience to be an excellent Police and Crime Commissioner. He’s the only candidate standing for the post that can be trusted to protect frontline services and ensure that South Yorkshire Police continue to serve everyone in our county, regardless of their background.

The Tories and Lib Dem candidates are guaranteed to carry on their government’s remorseless attack on public services, while the candidate from the virulently right-wing UKIP would be even more draconian. A victory for any of them would be disastrous for the people of South Yorkshire.

But though we urge all eligible voters in Birley Ward to vote for Shaun Wright, we think it’s important that those who wish to have a chance to speak to the candidate, so they can put their concerns about crime and policing to him. To this end, we’ve organised for Shaun to be in our ward this Saturday: from 11:30am-1:00pm he’ll be joining us at Basegreen shops on Jaunty Way to talk to the public, and to answer your questions on the forthcoming poll. It’d be great to see as many ward residents there as possible: this is your chance to speak to Labour’s candidate in person. In addition, Councillors Bryan Lodge and Denise Fox will be there, along with members of your ward Labour Party: we’ll be happy to discuss with you just why it’s essential that Shaun is elected South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner.

In case you’re unaware of the location, this link to Google maps shows you where it is:

We look forward to seeing you all on Saturday. This is one of the most important elections of recent times, and we have no doubt that when you’ve joined us you’ll agree: Shaun Wright is the outstanding candidate for Police and Crime Commissioner for South Yorkshire.

New Skate Park for Birley Ward

Birley Ward Skate Park Crossing Location
Birley Ward Skate Park Crossing Location

Following a lengthy consultation process, a new skate park has been approved for construction in Birley Ward. The skate park will be built on the car park for the playing fields at the bottom of Occupation Lane, and will provide a facility for local skateboarders to practice their sport in a place that is both safe and highly visible to the surrounding community.

The decision to give the go-ahead to the skate park was taken at the South-East Community Assembly meeting on Thursday October 11th. The decision took into account local views that were both for and against the proposal, and the impartial advice of Sheffield Council Officers, the local Safer Neighbourhood Team and the South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive.

The council officers’ report on the viability of the project and the canvassing of local opinion can be accessed here:

Report on Proposed Skate Park for Occupation Lane Playing Fields Car Park

School Crossing at Birley Community Primary School

Birley Ward Councillors have been working with the school to try to find a solution to the issues of safe crossing for pupils on Thornbridge Drive. Cllr McGowan is on the governing body at Birley Federation (known as the Birley Learning School) and says “Parking has been an issue in this area for a few of years now. A couple of years ago I was contacted by residents around Hayfield Crescent about the problem of parents parking on double yellow lines and blocking residents drive ways. The school, Councillors, PCSO and the Council’s Parking Wardens all worked together. The children were also involved and put notes on car windows asking parents to park more considerately”.

Since Birley Nursery is now part of the Birley Learning School the Primary school reception has changed to the front of the school (now based in the Nursery) and all parents enter the school via Thornbridge Avenue (none via Hayfield Crescent). Alongside this the new BSF building for Birley Community College has a new entrance on Birley Lane which includes a dropping off point within the school car park. A lot of changes have taken place to try to alleviate problems around the school but there is still an issue on Thornbridge Drive. Work is still on going to resolve this. Council Officers are talking to a couple of people who have expressed an interest in the School Crossing Patrol post. The school is writing out to parents about ensuring that children are properly supervised when leaving school. The school are also opening earlier so pupils in KS2 can enter from 8.00 a.m. it is hoped that this will also help reduce the pressure point in the morning.

Councillors are continuing to work with all agencies involved to try to resolve the issue as soon as possible.

Friends of Frecheville Park & Pond working hard

The Friends of Frecheville Park & Pond (FFPP) are working hard to improve the area for the whole community. At a meeting on 9th October issues regarding the remaining block were discussed. Members of FFPP met with members of the Bowling Club, the Parks & Countryside Service and the PCSO for a walk about in the area. Concerns were expressed that the remaining block is repeatedly attracting antisocial behaviour. Several options were discussed and the group are working hard to try to find a solution. The difficult task will then begin in trying to raise the funds for whatever option is agreed after consultation with the residents in the local area!

Birley Councillors Join in March for Pensions

Cllrs Denise Fox, Karen McGowan and Bryan Lodge with Ivy Marshall of Sheffield Pensioners Action Group

Birley Councillors Denise Fox, Karen McGowan and Bryan Lodge joined the recent Sheffield Pensioners Action Group (SPAG) march to draw attention to the fight for Fairer Pensions.  The march through Sheffield City Centre set out from Exchange street, near SPAG’s office on The Gallery, and made it’s way up to the City Hall were members were addressed by Dot Gibson from the National Pensioners Convention who had travelled up from London especially for the event.  Of great concern to many pensioners is current level of basic state pension at  £102 per week when people living on an income below £110 per week are considered to be living in poverty. Other speakers who addressed the gathering included Cllr Peter Price who serves as the Chair of SPAG, Jackie Milner, Secretary of Spag, Ben Morris of NUT and Cllr Bryan Lodge, Cabinet Member for Finance and Resources on Sheffield City Council.

Tories/LibDems Force Punitive Cuts on Sheffield

Nick Clegg Doesn't Care About The Cuts Attacking Sheffield - He'll Be Long Gone!
Nick Clegg Doesn’t Care About The Cuts Attacking Sheffield – He’ll Be Long Gone!

As may be seen in our previous post, Sheffield City Council has just issued a press release regarding the Council’s budget for the near future.

It’s important that all residents of our city read it, as it sets out the extremely tough financial environment the council will have to operate in in the next few years and beyond. Press and political opponents will no doubt paint this as ‘Labour cuts’, but these cuts are entirely the result of the Conservative/Lib Dem coalition slashing the money that Sheffield receives from council tax receipts raised in the city. It’s true that councils across the country are facing reduced funding, but these reductions are both disproportionate and partisan: so far Sheffield has lost £280 per head of population (with more to come), while Tory/Lib Dem councils in the south have lost much less. Dorset, for instance, has only lost £40 per head!

Given this, it’s essential that all people striving to build a better Sheffield find out for themselves the extent of the Tory/Lib Dem attack on our city, and then set the record straight in discussion with family, friends and work colleagues. These cuts are not Labour’s doing: they’re the scheme of a government that has it in for working class people, and that message has to be heard. It would be scandalous for hard-working Labour councillors to take the blame for this, thus letting in the Lib Dems again… the very party that’s colluding in this brutal attack on our public services!

But the most shocking thing is that this attack on Sheffield’s being driven by one of our city’s own MPs! Co-architect of the cuts Nick Clegg doesn’t care, though: he has no illusions about getting re-elected in Sheffield, and no doubt has already lined up some lucrative job at the EU for when the cuts truly hit and the voters of Sheffield show him what they think at the next election.

If you’d like any more information on this, please don’t hesitate to contact your Labour Councillor (for Birley Ward, these are Councillors Bryan Lodge, Denise Fox and Karen McGowan).

It’s up to the people of Sheffield to ensure that the Tories and Lib Dems get the credit they deserve for what they’re doing to our great city.


Bigger Budget Cuts Destined for Sheffield – Press Release

Sheffield City Council News Release

Sheffield will have to deal with greater cuts from Government than originally anticipated which will mean tougher decisions will have to be made on where tight resources could be spent.

That is the stark but realistic warning made by Sheffield City Council leaders as they continue to plan for the budget challenges from April next year.

The local authority was bracing itself for £40m worth of Government cuts in funding for 2013/14 but now expects to have a further £10m less to spend on services and deal with additional pressures such as energy bills, rising prices and increasing demand for its services.“I am passionate about Sheffield and providing good value for money services to local people but the latest news that we will be hit even harder is a real body blow and without doubt savage and unfair,” said Cllr Julie Dore, Leader of Sheffield City Council.

“Over the last two years the Council has made £141m of cuts to services as a result of the Government’s austerity programme. That equates to around £280 for every resident in this city thanks to the reduction in grants to us as a council.

“That places added strain on already stretched resources. So now we are working hard to focus on where we can possibly spend less.

“Whilst we are unable to go into detail at the moment as we now need more time to find these savings and consider proposals to take to the public, we can be certain of one thing, things will have to change as we cannot afford to stand still.

“I will not at this moment guarantee what that change will look like, what I can guarantee is that we will continue to protect services for those people who need it the most and work with businesses and our partners to make the most of opportunities to help the local economy grow and Sheffield continues to have its sights firmly set on the brightest future possible,” she added.

The Council has already drilled down on costs and saved £6m a year on IT by using an outside contractor, a further £1m could be reduced from directors’ pay bill as part of a proposed restructure which is currently out to consultation with staff affected and saving £12m this year and a further £50m over the life of the of Streets Ahead scheme to improve and maintain the city’s roads by reorganising how it is financed to save money.

“We are under no illusion that the months ahead and indeed years, are going to be the toughest we have faced in generations thanks to a double whammy of cut upon cut by the Government, “ said Cllr Bryan Lodge, Cabinet member for Finance and Resources.

“We will do all we can to reduce our spending in a fair way and minimise the impact, where we can, on our communities, However, at the moment, there is very little that we can rule in or out as we put the spotlight on our spending. It will be tough but we hope local communities will understand the position we are now put in and wherever possible work with us,” he said.