Letters - September 27, 2019

Do protesters set a good example for politicians?
Do protesters set a good example for politicians?
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This is no ordinary time in politics

Immense climate strikes taking over cities and towns the length and breadth of Britain and many other parts of the planet should set the tone for politics.

The message taken up by schoolchildren the world over is that the system as it stands is accelerating towards global catastrophe and politicians must be forced, not asked, to act.

This is no ordinary time in politics, and as Jeremy Corbyn has said, the looming election will not be an ordinary one.

We can plump for more of the same... privatising public services and deregulation, allowing big business to cut corners with the environment, our health, and the safety of where we live and work.

As author and campaigner Naomi Klein has put it, we are entering an era of climate barbarism.

Donald Trump has torn up environmental protections, resulting in a sharp drop in the number and size of fines for companies breaking the law.

In Britain, Labour can be the party that begins to deliver what is needed.

Already it the only major party with a serious programme for addressing climate change.

It is a process that will require taking our transport and energy systems into public ownership, so, renationalised, it is designed according to sustainability and need, not private profit.

Only Labour has the ambition to think about reshaping the agricultural sector, growing more of our own food. Most important of all, only Labour understands that the vested interests that control our society must be confronted and defeated if we are to succeed.

Too often its radical message has been drowned out by a hostile media and unelected government of Big business support.

Royston Jones

Thanks you for all your support

I just wanted to say thank you so very much for your coverage of National Eye Health Week – and beyond, to N-Vision’s recent volunteers’ celebration, because those 249 volunteers underpin the work of a crucial local sight loss support charity and many of them also help deliver (in the correct sense) local news from The Gazette, associated weeklies and others to several hundred Talking Newspaper listeners.

It is a quality of life-line service. You make it possible by producing the paper, by publicising the work of the charity and in so doing encouraging more to volunteer and know they are appreciated… and others to sign up to the Talking News, now 42 years old.

Furthermore, your support of National Eye Health Week has been exemplary and will, without a shadow of a doubt, have encouraged more to book sight tests and to also think twice with regard to their children’s eyesight and their own. Including as motorists.

So many conditions, including those unrelated to eye health, can be flagged up early by those high street optometrists/opticians. You highlighted that.

You provided a platform for orthoptists to reiterate the need for parents to bring their children into clinics if called upon to do so by the county-wide visual screening of four- and five-year olds.

You highlighted the need for greater awareness of the impact of stroke because undetected vision loss, blind spots, may lead to falls or other issues – and readmissions to hospital. The professional body representing orthoptists want screening for all stroke victims. So do specialist local orthoptists.

Finally, you enabled N-Vision to make and reiterate the point that half of all sight loss is avoidable, controllable, preventable. Across Lancashire, 41,000 people live with sight loss severe enough to significantly affect their lives, and that of their loved ones, the overlooked statistic. That figure is set to rise by 25 per cent by 2030 – that’s 10,250 more. Half of it (5,125) avoidable, controllable, preventable. Locally, Mr Ahmad Khalil, the new head of ophthalmology at Blackpool Victoria Hospital, reckons on at least 200 new patients coming through a year. 2030 – eleven years and counting. Time enough to make some changes? We hope so. And there’s a fighting chance of doing so thanks to YOUR help, vision and continued support.

Jacqui Morley
N-Vision Blackpool Fylde and Wyre Blind Society

Can we go to the Supreme Court now?

So there we have it, Brexit once again thwarted by 11 unelected judges who arrogantly know better than the ‘peasants’. Surely there is a case for 17m voters who have not had their democratic vote enacted by Parliament to approach this same court as to why this has not happened?

Barrie Crowther
Address supplied

Parliament is now recalled... and?

So what difference has the Supreme Court ruling made? Yes, Parliament has been recalled...and?

Guy Barritt
via email