Letters - June 1, 2011

File photo dated 15/07/09 of a Jobcentre Plus sign as a number of Jobcentre Plus offices are to be closed with the loss of 2,400 jobs, staff have been told. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Friday May 13, 2011. The Public and Commercial Services union said 17 benefit-processing sites and five contact centres will be shut, mainly over the next year, at a time of rising unemployment. See PA story INDUSTRY Jobs. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire
File photo dated 15/07/09 of a Jobcentre Plus sign as a number of Jobcentre Plus offices are to be closed with the loss of 2,400 jobs, staff have been told. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Friday May 13, 2011. The Public and Commercial Services union said 17 benefit-processing sites and five contact centres will be shut, mainly over the next year, at a time of rising unemployment. See PA story INDUSTRY Jobs. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire
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Have your say

I AM a family man with two children, aged six and eight.

As we all know, there have been a lot of changes made to the benefits system, including getting people off benefits and into work.

My partner, who has been a mum for more than eight years, decided to go on a course for hospitality.

She had an appointment at the Seasiders Learning Centre, which she was referred by the job centre, only, with many others, to be given the brush off.

I know things are hard out there, but this takes the biscuit, from a government which doesn’t know what they are doing. How can you get a job if you can’t even get training?

It will be my turn next, as I am on incapacity benefit and am due to be assessed for employment and support allowance. If this is anything to go by, I am terrified.

SIMON SELBY

Hawthorn Road

Blackpool

THE recent furore over court injunctions, and the decision by The Court of Appeal in the Sharon Shoesmith case, both raise important constitutional issues that ought to concern us all, as both involve legal rulings that challenge the sovereignty of Parliament.

When Ed Balls removed Shoesmith from her post as director of children’s services at Haringey he exercised, as minister, a statutory right to do so.

His decision, after all, was based on an independent Ofsted report that reported a catalogue of catastrophic failures in Shoesmith’s department. These failures resulted in a child on the ‘at risk’ list being brutally killed.

At a press conference, Shoesmith refused to apologise. She has continued to deny that she, or her department, was in any way responsible for the tragic death of Baby P.

In such cases, there is a long history of people doing the honourable thing and resigning. Sharon Shoesmith refused to do this, so she was removed.

If the government’s further legal action fails, Shoesmith will almost certainly be awarded compensation of around £1m. This ought to provoke public outrage.

However, a win for the judges will be potentially disastrous, since it will be yet another example of how increasingly Parliament is being undermined by legal stealth.

DR BARRY CLAYTON

Fieldfare Close

Cleveleys

ON Wednesday, May 25, while driving on Highfield Road, Blackpool, in my Ford Ka, I had the misfortune of a puncture.

A young man in the car behind me, who had pointed out the puncture, told me to pull into Orchard Avenue.

He then proceeded to change my wheel for me.

When I offered him payment, he would not hear of it, saying only that, when he phoned his mother, he would tell her what he had done and she would be so proud of him!

All I know is that his name is Richard, his mother lives in New Zealand, and his little girl was five on that day.

If you should read this Richard, thank you for your extremely good deed. People like you restore faith in human nature.

MOLLIE MURPHY

(age 71)

Marton