Author: nld01

Job Opportunity Awaits…

Unfortunately, I am still searching for the correct person to join my team of staff. I can not comment on the reasons why my latest appointment did not work out, but it seems that I am back at square one searching for people to help me live independently. 

104102818_10157615991067411_1944765244498921890_o

I am STILL in search of new staff to work alongside me as a personal assistant. This is a fulfilling role that gives you the chance to make a difference to someone else’s life. I am looking for someone who is punctual, reliable, a team player and can be flexible. Word processing skills and a full driving licence are ABSOLUTELY essential to help me get the most out of my life. 

There are plenty of shifts available during the weekends, and I am in urgent need of someone to fill the Monday morning shift from 08:30 – 15:00. Because I operate with a relatively small team of staff, I am often trying to cover holidays  and sickness – there are  a whole host of hours available for the right person. This is an ideal opportunity for a student looking to gain experience in social care sector or any empathetic individual who wants to put their time to good use.

Ideally, I will eventually be able to build a team of bank staff, to ease the burden on my contracted staff. If you are interested in either of these positions, or know someone who may be, please get in touch via the Contact page, Facebook or Twitter. Good luck.

***

Rate of Pay: Flat Rate: £9.80 per hour  – Weekly Hours: To be discussed at interview.

About the employer:

I am a sociable 43-year-old man living in the Wrexham area. I use a wheelchair and live with Friedreich’s Ataxia which does not affect my intellect. Subsequently, I require support to remain independent. I am an author and disabled activist with a good sense of humour. I remain ambitious and adventurous. I enjoy company and I like to go out socialising.

Summary of duties:

To provide support to access various social and recreational activities. You must therefore have a clean driving license. You will need to support with personal care, including toileting, washing, dressing and preparing meals. I am a very creative individual and require support to develop my ideas. Due to my poor dexterity I struggle to type quickly – as a writer this is most frustrating – therefore you should have good word-processing skills.A full driving license is also required as I often attend meetings throughout the North Wales and North West area.Support with gardening and household tasks.

The post will include 5.6 weeks paid annual leave (pro-rata)

Police records check funded by the employer will be required. It is also essential that you provide references from former employers.

The person I am looking for:

The ideal person will have a good sense of humour and should also display plenty of energy, initiative and enthusiasm. In addition, applicants should be patient and trustworthy with a flexible and empathetic attitude. A positive attitude and clear understanding of confidentiality is essential. Promoting my independence will be the main focus for any support. You must be reliable, friendly, flexible and punctual.

 

News bulletin: Coronavirus restrictions relaxed further to support tourism and leisure sectors in Wales

This is a very Important E-mail update about Coronavirus restrictions in Wales. It made me decide with the tourism industry in mind, but it is relevant to ALL citizens in Wales at this concerning time.

***

coronavirus-update-english_crop

Coronavirus restrictions relaxed further to support tourism and leisure sectors in Wales 

Following the latest 21-day review of the coronavirus regulations, the First Minister has set out a phased timetable to ease restrictions for large parts of Wales’ visitor, hospitality, and leisure and tourism sectors. Read in detail on the Welsh Government website.

The current proposals at the review on 10 July, which are subject to change, envisage re-opening the visitor economy as follows:

6 July 2020

Outdoor visitor attractions

On 6 July the Welsh Government lifted the requirement to stay local allowing people to travel around Wales and to visit outdoor visitor attractions, subject to strict social distancing and hand hygiene guidelines.

11 July 2020

Reopening self-contained holiday accommodation

Self-catering accommodation can only be let to members of the same or extended household. This also includes serviced accommodation where bedroom occupancy can only be let to the same or extended household and not, for example, friends booking a twin bedroom or a family bedroom, etc.

This includes any accommodation that is entirely self-contained, e.g. holiday cottages, holiday caravans including touring caravans, motorhomes, boats and some glamping accommodation with their own kitchens and bathrooms that no other guests use.

Also in this category:

  • Hotels and other serviced accommodation (e.g. B&Bs, hostels, etc.) that do provide en-suite rooms and can provide room service meals.
  • Caravan parks where accommodation is entirely self-contained – but shared facilities on the premises will remain closed, such as swimming pools, leisure facilities, shared shower and toilets blocks, shared laundry, etc, and public areas in other accommodation types. This means any caravan or touring site where individual accommodation has its own supply of water for on board shower, WC and cooking with strict application of guidance on shared waste disposal and water points.

All shared facilities, aside from water and disposal points, should remain closed including toilets, shower blocks, laundry, restaurants, nightclubs, bars, cafes, etc.

13 July 2020

Pubs, bars, cafes and restaurants re-open outdoors

Indoor visitor attractions excluding any part of a visitor attraction which is underground.

25 July 2020

Camping and caravanning with shared facilities prepare for re-opening

3 August

Indoor hospitality prepare for re-opening

Check back later for more information.

To be confirmed

Re-opening of remaining visitor attractions subject to further scientific advice and discussions with the industry

Check back later for more information.


Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance for safely re-opening your business 

Visitor Economy Guidance is available to help tourism and hospitality businesses safely re-open during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Additional guidance has also been produced in consultation with the Hospitality sector for Pubs, Bars, Cafes and Restaurants re-opening outdoors, which can be viewed on the UK Hospitality website.

As each premises is different, businesses should read all guidance to understand the measures to be considered to re-open the business safely.

A list of Frequently Asked Questions in relation to Coronavirus (COVID19) is also updated regularly on Gov.Wales – please check back regularly.


Important New Policy Guidance – Maintaining Records of Staff, Customers & Visitors

Coronavirus will be with us until an effective vaccine is available or there is enough immunity among the population. As lockdown restrictions ease, general rules around social distancing and handwashing will remain important in reducing the risk of transmission. Our Test, Trace, Protect strategy will be key in controlling the spread of new outbreaks, particularly as public spaces start to re-open.

As people increasingly come into greater contact with others, there is a higher risk of transmitting COVID-19 in some sectors. This is because customers and visitors will spend a longer time on these premises than in other surroundings, and will potentially come into close contact with people outside of their household. These sectors include:

  • Hospitality, including pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes.
  • Tourism and leisure, including theme parks, museums and cinemas.
  • Close contact services including hairdressers, barbers, beauticians, tattooists, sports and massage therapists, dress fitters, tailors and fashion designers.
  • Facilities provided by local authorities, such as libraries and leisure centres.

For businesses operating in these sectors, important new policy guidance from Welsh Government has now been published. This describes the important role these businesses play in supporting contact tracing and keeping Wales safe. As a business operating in one of these sectors, you now need to start collecting details and maintaining records of staff, customers and visitors to your premises. This guidance is not a legal requirement, but it is strongly advised that you follow this advice to support the NHS Wales Test, Trace, Protect service in reducing the risk of transmission of COVID-19.


Large tourism companies welcome Economic Resilience Fund support of £2m from Welsh Government

As restrictions begin to be gradually eased at tourism sites and attractions across Wales, the Welsh Government’s bespoke Economic Resilience Fund (ERF) has provided vital support of more than £2 million to some of our largest key tourism companies.

Today, Minister for the Economy, Transport and North Wales, Ken Skates, visited one of the fund recipients, Zip World, which re-opened two of its three sites earlier this week, offering thrill-seekers six of the Zip World adventures.

Sean Taylor, founder of Zip World, said: “We’ve welcomed the support and hard work from all the team at the Welsh Government during this crisis.  We thank them for their continued effort to safely get the visitor economy back up and running again and for recognising the significance of our brand to the local North Wales economy.”

The ERF, which is part of the Welsh Government’s £1.7bn support package for business, is providing significant financial support to companies across Wales and complements the support provided by the UK Government. To date, it has provided more than 8,200 businesses with financial support worth more than £230m.

Other large tourism companies which have received ERF funding include Bourne Leisure; Bluestone and JH Leeke, which operates the Vale Resort. Read in full on the Welsh Government website.


Stay up to date with tourism industry news

We are committed to providing the support and assurance the business community needs during these unprecedented difficult times and have issued several Coronavirus (COVID-19) related bulletins which can be found on the Tourism Industry Coronavirus (COVID-19) Bulletins page.


Business Wales is providing businesses with tailored support and advice about dealing with coronavirus, from financial and supply chain planning to advice on staffing issues. We would advise Tourism businesses and stakeholders in Wales wanting specific guidance to visit the Business Wales website or call Business Wales helpline on 03000 6 03000, and to regularly visit the Public Health Wales website for up-to-date public health information for you, your staff and your visitors.

Emergency on Planet Earth #39

I WILL WRITE A NUMBER OF EMERGENCY ON PLANET EARTH BLOGS THROUGHOUT THE TORY SPONSORED CORONAVIRUS CRISIS.

 What follows is a random collection of thoughts from a human being trapped in 21st Century British society.

***

With thanks to ROFA and John Pring for the following news articles. Anyone wondering about the progress of the #SaveWILG petition should scroll down as I have included a brief update, including footage of the petition being discussed by Welsh politicians.

I have also included a news report from Skwakbox below as I tried to highlight the relevant news of the day whilst struggling to find the time to formulate writing of my own. It is becoming evermore apparent that I am in dire need of my reassessment by ICS. This is part of the deal we struck with the Welsh Government to ensure that those unhappy with their Local Authority assessments could access an independent assessment.

The delays we have been facing due to the Coronavirus Crisis are unfortunate and can not be helped, but having said that I have written countless times to ICS and have to wait long periods without a reply.

I hope to have my reassessment by the end of the month, but I need time to organise such a meeting and I will be writing to ICS yet again on Monday to try to push things forward. The physical and mental strains of not receiving the support I need is exhausting, but in the meantime I you can enjoy the article below that I have managed to cobble together.

***

c7dbf7fa-ddb1-4e42-8006-d2b7f173c1e5

Unite Community are organising a National Day of Action on 15th July to highlight the injustices of Universal Credit.

Unite Community campaigns for a fairer social security system for all, which works to end poverty, and which allows claimants to live with dignity.

The three immediate demands are:

  • End the five-week wait for payment
  • Make the temporary £20 per week extra permanent and give to ALL existing benefit claimants
  • Stop Benefit Sanctions

For more details click here.

***

Government Reintroduces Benefit Sanctions During Pandemic

Disabled campaigners have described the government’s decision to reintroduce benefit sanctions – in the middle of a pandemic – as “barbaric” and “life threatening”.
The decision meant an end to the three-month suspension of benefit sanctions and conditionality* in England, Scotland and Wales, which had been introduced in March as part of the COVID-19 lockdown measures.

Jobcentres will start re-opening this week in England, but not in Scotland and Wales, where claimants will only receive services online and by phone.

This means that some claimants in England will now begin to have face-to-face discussions with work coaches in jobcentres.

For the full story from the Disability News Service click here. 

***

I9S4UveZ

The petition that I originally submitted in October 2017 – to reconsider the closure of the Welsh Independent Living Grant and support disabled people to live independently – was considered again by the Senedd Petitions Committee on Tuesday. The relevant section can be seen from the 48 minute mark via this link.

I am delighted that the Committee have agreed to keep the petition open until everything is finalised. There are still issues that need to be resolved and my determination to see disabled people receiving the support they deserve has only been strengthened by the passing of former WILG recipient and friend Tracy Pritchard…

***

A few years ago, I was very proud to be a member of the Corbyn-led Labour Party and disappointed with the direction Carwyn Jones was taking Welsh Labour. It is funny how things can change as now the exact opposite is true – Mark Drakeford has my full support as First Minister while Keir Starmer seems to be testing my loyalty to the Labour brand.

Video: Unite’s Beckett slams Tories for dumping austerity fall-out of pandemic on working class – and takes Labour to task for weak response

Coronavirus: Welsh pubs and cafes to reopen indoors on 3 August

Press Release: EU Structural Funds Used to Segregate Disabled People in Austria

I received the following press release this morning from the European Network on Independent Living (ENIL). I would like to wish ENIL and ILA every success in their battle against segregation.

***

360b3881-4b5e-49ee-85b5-33c263f50dde

Vienna and Brussels, 8 July 2020 – 7.5 million Euros of the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) have been used in Upper Austria to build institutions and sheltered employment facilities for disabled people. The investment went ahead despite Austria’s and the European Union’s obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), the Fundamental Rights Charter and EU’s anti-discrimination law. Last week, Independent Living Austria – ILA (Selbstbestimmt Leben Österreich), based in Vienna, and the European Network on Independent Living – ENIL, based in Brussels, mounted a challenge against such use of EU funds, by submitting a formal complaint against the State Government of Upper Austria to the European Commission.

The organisations obtained documentation for six segregated living facilities and two sheltered workshops for disabled people, recently built and co-funded with EAFRD. All the projects are specialised facilities aimed exclusively at disabled people. They can be considered as institutional care settings, based on the criteria set out in General Comment 5 on Article 19 of the CRPD, issued by the CRPD Committee.

Bernardette Feuerstein, chair of Independent Living Austria, stated: “ILA is strictly against all measures that segregate persons with disabilities. Public funds, no matter of which origin, may not be used unlawfully. We are happy to reveal this problematic practice together with ENIL and hope that the necessary steps will be taken.”

In the complaint, ILA and ENIL expressed concern about the fact that, in Upper Austria, the majority of disabled people live in institutions and “work” in sheltered facilities, where they are not paid nor have other employment rights. According to the official statistics for 2018, 70 percent of disabled people – a total of 4,635 individuals – live in institutions, while only 1,746 receive support to live in their own homes, and a meagre 215 benefit from personal assistance. Funds provided by the European Union could facilitate access to rights and the social inclusion of disabled people, by developing the much needed community-based services in the region. Instead, they will reinforce the already existing system of segregation.

ILA and ENIL brought the complaint with the aim of getting the European Commission to take action against the Government of Upper Austria, such as launching infringement proceedings. The organisations believe that there is a strong legal basis for this to happen, as the right of disabled people to independent living, to work and employment, and protection from discrimination, are among the common values of the EU and enshrined in law. Further complaints might follow against other regions in Austria which use EAFRD to institutionalise disabled people.

Notes for the editors:

Independent Living Austria – ILA is the nationwide advocacy organisation of the Independent Living Movement in Austria. As an umbrella organisation, ILA aims at creating preconditions for the independent living of persons with disabilities and their equality in all spheres of live. In line with the principle “Nothing about us without us” and the self-advocacy right of persons with disabilities, ILA represents and supports initiatives, organisations and individuals in their fight for equality and against discrimination. The aim is to achieve equality of persons with disabilities and to fully enforce their rights as citizens.

The European Network on Independent Living (ENIL) is a Europe-wide network of disabled people, with members throughout Europe. ENIL’s vision is of Europe where all disabled people are able to exercise choice and control over their lives, on an equal level with others; where they are valued members of the community and can enjoy all of their human rights, as set out in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). ENIL’s mission is to advocate and lobby for Independent Living values, principles and practices, namely for a barrier-free environment, provision of personal assistance support and adequate technical aids, together making full citizenship of disabled people possible. ENIL’s activities target European, national and local administrations, politicians, media, and the general society. See: http://www.enil.eu

For additional information, please contact Bernadette Feuerstein (ILA), bernadette@selbstbestimmtleben.at, or Nataša Kokić (ENIL), natasa.kokic@enil.eu.

German version of the Press Release: Pressemitteilung: EU-Strukturfonds werden in Österreich zur Aussonderung von Menschen mit Behinderungen verwendet

Full text of the complaint is available here.

Emergency on Planet Earth #38

I WILL WRITE A NUMBER OF EMERGENCY ON PLANET EARTH BLOGS THROUGHOUT THE TORY SPONSORED CORONAVIRUS CRISIS.

 What follows is a random collection of thoughts from a human being trapped in 21st Century British society.

***

I would like to wish the NHS a very happy 72nd birthday. I will not patronise the fine institution by making zero effort to applaud thin air, but my attitude towards this fine organisation is as warm as the next person.

A more useful thing for people to do this afternoon, is to sign petitions such as this one, calling for a pay-rise for all NHS staff.

It is so important that we all recognise the importance of the NHS, and do not allow the Tories to decimate it further. I recommend that everyone should read this article that appeared on the Skwawkbox blog this morning:

Former BMA deputy chair says ‘Happy birthday NHS – but when non-COVID tsunami hits, if you love it, step up to protect it from govt who will exploit crisis to wreck it’

I fail to understand why the Tories have such a problem with a service that provides free health care to its citizens. I am quite proud that I don’t understand their desire to privatise everything, even though it is obvious to everyone that it all boils down to filthy lucre.

 

 

***

This fantastic song came up on YouTube the other night, and I was very interested in the video. A quick search led me to discover that it is used in the film My Friend Dahmer – a must-watch for myself.

I don’t know why I am drawn to such questionable characters, or why I write to prisoners on Death Row? I guess it is something to do with sympathy for the misunderstood. Of course, the actions of certain individuals cannot ever be excused, but I have always taken the side of the underdog, and think it is important to find out why people become murderers. Is it nature or nurture?

From Wikipedia:

Talking Heads were an American rock band formed in 1975 in New York City and active until 1991.[8] The band was composed of David Byrne (lead vocalsguitar), Chris Frantz (drums), Tina Weymouth (bass), and Jerry Harrison (keyboards, guitar). Described by the critic Stephen Thomas Erlewine as “one of the most critically acclaimed bands of the ’80s,”[3] the group helped to pioneer new wave music by integrating elements of punkart rockfunk, and world music with avant-garde sensibilities and an anxious, clean-cut image.[3]

Former art school students who became involved in the 1970s New York punk scene, Talking Heads released their 1977 debut album, Talking Heads: 77, to positive reviews.[9] They collaborated with producer Brian Eno on a trio of experimental and critically acclaimed releases: More Songs About Buildings and Food (1978), Fear of Music (1979), and Remain in Light (1980).[3] After a hiatus, Talking Heads hit their commercial peak in 1983 with the U.S. Top 10 hit “Burning Down the House” from the album Speaking in Tongues and released the concert film Stop Making Sense, directed by Jonathan Demme.[3] They released several more albums, including their best-selling LP Little Creatures (1985), before disbanding in 1991.[10]

In 2002, Talking Heads were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Four of their albums appear in Rolling Stones list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, and three of their songs (“Psycho Killer“, “Life During Wartime“, and “Once in a Lifetime“) were included among the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll.[11] Talking Heads were also number 64 on VH1‘s list of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time”.[12] In the 2011 update of Rolling Stones “100 Greatest Artists of All Time“, they were ranked number 100.[13]

Reinvigorating the Social Model of Disability

106706547_10223500407443385_247798637713805225_n

Reinvigorating the social model of disability 6.30 to 8.30 Monday 6 July. Watch live on DPAC’s Facebook/YouTube.

In this meeting a range of deaf and disabled activists and explore the ideas put forward in the final chapter of Eileen Cliffords new book “The War on Disabled People”

Speakers: Marsha de Cordova MP shadow minister for women and equalities tbc; Ellen Clifford author of The War on Disabled People; Mark Duncan DPAC; Karena Marchant activist; Bob Williams-Findlay academic and activist; Denise McKenna mental health resistance network; Catherine Hale chronic illness inclusion project; Rick Burgess recovery in the bin; Kate Carter founding member of the unspoken project cic and aac user; Andrew Lee peoplefirst; Dorothy Gould Liberation and Paula Ntulila deaf campaigner.

Emergency on Planet Earth #37

I WILL WRITE A NUMBER OF EMERGENCY ON PLANET EARTH BLOGS THROUGHOUT THE TORY SPONSORED CORONAVIRUS CRISIS.

 What follows is a random collection of thoughts from a human being trapped in 21st Century British society.

***

vp-help-wanted-position-filled-300x215

I am absolutely over the moon that I have just employed another personal assistant, to join my small team of staff. After losing three valued employees in March, I have endured a very stressful period where I have had to stretch the limited resources that I have, to ensure I receive the 24/7 support I need.

It is such a relief to have found someone that I can respect, and receive the same respect back. I had been messaging agencies, as it seemed that I would never find the right individual to work with. Of course, only time will tell if I have struck gold, but the early signs are very encouraging.

There are still hours available, but not nearly as many as there were. I also have another member of staff due to return from maternity leave soon, so all of a sudden everything is looking rosy as I try to establish the 2:1 support that I really need to meet my physical and mental wellbeing needs.

A good example of why I need 2:! support came the other day, when my electric wheelchair started playing up. I called the engineers, who said that they would make an emergency call, as long as I was able to get out of the chair while they made adaptations. This is a standard request, made with my safety in mind. Unfortunately, I was unable to vacate my chair as I only had one support worker present. Hoisting me out of the chair and on to a bed or shower chair, is a two-person job in order to comply with health and safety regulations. I was subsequently forced to arrange an appointment for tomorrow afternoon, while hoping my chair does not give up the ghost in the meantime.

I will achieve my ultimate goal of independent living, supported by the Social Services and Wellbeing Act, in the end. It just might take me a little longer than expected, after starting my crusade ten years ago…

***

Below, I have share a video that I found on YouTube, that quickly encapsulates Friedreich’s Ataxia. This is the progressive, genetic disease of the nervous system that I live with, so I thought you might be interested. It is only a short video, so I have also added a more complex video that explains all in a scientific manner. If you are interested then you may wish to watch this, but it even confused ME, so I don’t blame you if you don’t bother.

***

This was an interesting post that I read this morning, from the Debatedly Dateable blog about dating in the Covid era. I should be so lucky…

Lockdown wrap: The calm before the storm

This is the type of thoughtful football writing that I aspire to. Another excellent piece by the Oxblogger…

Oxblogger

There’s an iconic moment towards the end of Empire Strikes Back in which Han Solo is set to be frozen in carbonite. Faced with imminent peril, Leia rushes forward to declare that she loves him. He replies by saying ‘I know’.

For me, what makes that scene is not so much Solo’s hubris, it’s not a characteristic Solo joke, it’s the fact that knowing he is facing death, he is enveloped by calm and clarity. He dispenses with the norms, rules and the niceties – where he might reciprocate or deflect Leia’s declaration – because he doesn’t need those anymore. Between that moment and his very likely demise, he can simply play it as he wants.

It’s a similar phenomenon that Jon Ronson talks about in his interview with Louis Theroux on the Grounded podcast. A notoriously anxious person, Ronson has become calm in the face of the pandemic, almost…

View original post 680 more words

Statement in Support of Rebecca Long-Bailey MP

I have chosen to share the following statement from the Welsh Labour Grassroots Steering Committee in response to yesterday’s sacking of Rebecca Long-Bailey from the Shadow Cabinet.

***

0pPSJ8r2_400x400

The Welsh Labour Grassroots Steering Committee is appalled by Keir Starmer’s decision to sack Rebecca Long-Bailey from the Shadow Cabinet over her re-tweeting of an interview in The Independent with the Labour-supporting actor, Maxine Peake.

Starmer claims that the interview contains “an anti-semitic conspiracy theory” – a reference to a statement that the technique of kneeling on a prisoner’s neck, which resulted in the death of George Floyd, was learnt by US police at “seminars with Israeli secret services.” This statement may be unfounded but we do not accept that it represents “an anti-semitic conspiracy theory.” It is a matter of public record that US police departments have “received training on crowd control, use of force and surveillance from Israel’s national police, military and intelligence services” to quote the US section of Amnesty International. While it has not been established that the technique of kneeling on someone’s neck was taught by Israeli officers, to say so is, at worst, an incorrect statement about agencies of a state notorious for committing human rights abuses. 

It is wrong to suggest that criticism in good faith of the Israeli state, even if based on disputable facts, is equivalent to a racist attack on Jewish people as such. Moreover, it is a slur on the good character of both Maxine Peake and Rebecca Long-Bailey – two principled socialist women, who are a credit to the Labour party – to suggest that they would propagate anti-semitism in any form.

Rebecca Long-Bailey has been a powerful and eloquent advocate for socialist policies in recent years and it was a needlessly self-destructive act for Starmer to remove her from her role as Shadow Education Secretary, which she has fulfilled with admirable skill and commitment. Given her status as one of the most prominent figures of the socialist left within our party, Rebecca’s removal from the Shadow Cabinet is a particular blow to those of us who believe that Labour should be a force for radical political change. Keir Starmer has consistently claimed that he wants to unite the party, yet this decision casts doubt on the sincerity of that commitment. It would be better for him to direct his fire more consistently at the Tory government over its increasingly reckless handling of the Covid-19 pandemic.

We call for Rebecca Long-Bailey to be reinstated as a member of Labour’s Shadow Cabinet and for the party to state unequivocally that neither she nor Maxine Peake is guilty of promoting or condoning anti-semitism.

Moreover, we urge the many socialists feeling disheartened after yesterday’s events to stay in the Labour party and to help make Labour once again the kind of party that can inspire those who want to build a better world. 

ENDS

You can also read this statement on our website here.

I am absolutely, genuinely embarrassed by the way the Labour Party is currently being led

My good friend and comrade Adam Samuels has written the following article for the Dorset Eye  website. I fully endorse every word and recommend this piece to all socialists dismayed by the way in which OUR Party is being led. 

***

a0VMUck4_400x400

I want to issue an apology to so many people who rely on The Labour Party to represent you. I am absolutely, genuinely embarrassed by the way the Party is currently being led. I want to show total solidarity with the many people who have been in contact, with those who are still in floods of tears.

Most of all I want to say that I am ashamed & embarrassed by the behaviour of certain people. I feel, without question, as a recent example, both Rebecca Long Bailey & Maxine Peake, two magnificent, outstanding, compassionate, committed, dedicated Socialist women, have been & are being bullied. THIS IS ABSOLUTELY NOT ACCEPTABLE. The hypocrisy and behaviour from the top of the Labour Party is shocking and, quite frankly, disgusting.

Let me also be VERY clear here: anti-Semitism, and any form of racism or discrimination is totally abhorrent. It should always be exposed and resisted. It is why I stand in total solidarity with Jewish comrades who are attacked as if they somehow represent the IDF and extremist far-right Netanyahu Israeli government. The actions of the state of Israel & the IDF are very well documented by the world courts, UN, Amnesty International etc etc. The law breaking now and historically is completely unacceptable, as it is from the UK, USA or any other government. I also stand in total solidarity with my Palestinian comrades, who are the receivers of some truly horrific murders, imperialism, colonialism and racism. WHOEVER commits the offences, I stand against. I stand with ALL comrades, regardless of their colour, faith, place of birth, gender etc.

I want to continue to show complete and total solidarity with all people who identify as BAME (and those for whom that term is unacceptable, I apologise, but hope you understand why I use it in current context to show solidarity). You are being, and have been, let down. Just because my Party seemingly wants to ignore this along with the media, does not mean your genuine concerns and feeling of betrayal are any less real. I repeat, the vast majority of The Labour Party stands proudly, unapologetically in solidarity with you.

As a white man, apart from being not being rich, I am in the most privileged of demographics. Yet, for large parts of my life I have been bullied for being overweight. More recently, the last five years, the abuse-sometimes violent-has been for supporting Jeremy Corbyn wanting to have a decent living for all, free health, education & housing where needed, no illegal wars etc. Often that bullying has come from some of the very same people now targeting Rebecca & Maxine. TBC, of course I would not compare my situation to that of any woman or BAME person who has been the victim of racist/sexist abuse.

Bullies will not win. Ever. This bullying goes completely unrecognised everywhere-by The Labour Party, by members who do not share a Socialist vision (not all, obviously), by power, by the media etc etc. It is even worse at times, where we are mocked and vilified by those with a massive platform, often without the right of reply. These people are awful, awful human beings carrying this out. Yet, too often, hide behind the facade of being ‘liberal’ and ‘decent’. Genuinely, some of the worst people I have ever come across are supposed ‘liberals’.

I want to show total solidarity with all women, many of whom have been beyond appalled by yesterday’s actions from The Labour Party. Though it is not just women who have been in tears, I am aware how important it is to show solidarity and highlight just how upsetting things currently are for so many women. I would absolutely not want to speak on behalf of any woman, in the same way I would not want to re anyone identifying as BAME, I just want to reflect their understandable frustration & anger and show solidarity.

There will be those reading this that will feel a need to jump to the defence of Keir Starmer & Labour. As is their right, of course. There will be those who will not take these words seriously, laugh, mock & ridicule. Those people are very much part of the problem; the toxic culture within Labour that needs removing absolutely ASAP if the Party is to have any chance at all of unity. Speaking for myself, I genuinely couldn’t care about those people. There are times in the past I would have, but not now. I do not have the time or inclination to justify myself to any of them. There will be others who are genuinely good people who are blinded by their loyalty to Starmer or the Party. I implore such people to respectfully read and listen.

I am staying in The Labour Party. I completely respect and understand why those who have left have left, and they are absolutely no less of a comrade now than when they were in the Party. I understand their reasons and logic and respect them. But, for me personally, as things are now, I will stay and fight for justice, for the forthcoming NEC elections…and who knows what else might be needed if things carry on as they are. No, that is not a threat. It is saying members can only take so much.

I implore my Party to LISTEN to those telling them why they feel betrayed and failed by the current direction of the party. The time has come to say “Enough is enough”. I want to thank all the brilliant comrades doing all they do every day to help make society that little bit better. The millions of unsung heroes who exist within Labour and outside Labour. Solidarity with you all.

THANK YOU to you all. Stay strong because WE WILL BE NEEDED. El Pueblo Unido Jamas Sera Vencido! Hasta La Victoria, Siempre!

Adam Samuels