Letters - July 12, 2017

Nurses' pay and MP Paul Maynard's stance on the issue have dominated The Gazette's mailbag over the last few days
Nurses' pay and MP Paul Maynard's stance on the issue have dominated The Gazette's mailbag over the last few days
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PAY

Maynard fallen 
into his own trap

Paul Maynard’s reply to Marjorie Nye (Gazette letters, July 7) is rather testy, but are we surprised at his rebuke of her?

He has quoted that it is the independent Pay Review Body that sets public sector pay.

He has, however, fallen into his own trap!

He seems not to have read the latest Review Body report, published earlier this year, which itself condemns the government’s pay restraint policy which they have to consider!

Perhaps most damning is the report’s view that, in the absence of genuine service transformation, wage suppression has become the government’s only means of finding the savings needed to close the £22bn gap identified in the Five Year Forward View. The report states: “We are concerned that holding down pay has become the default position for making efficiencies, as service transformation is not yet delivering.

“Reliance on pay to meet the affordability challenge risks putting further pressure on the real wages of NHS staff and creating a perception of unfairness, which could be counter-productive due to its impact on recruitment, retention and motivation.”

I would say to Paul Maynard that take home pay is important to the staff left in the NHS, who have seen their workloads increasing.

A new strategy needs to be implemented, to tackle fair pay and reduced workloads.

If you care about your constituents, you should apologise to nurses and all public servants, whom you have failed.

Roy Lewis

Haddon Road

Co-op Party

HEALTH

Stop witch-hunt against smokers

So our ‘representatives’ in parliament now plan to ban smoking in outdoor public places too.

How outrageous.

Surely smoking outdoors is nowhere near as harmful as emissions from vehicle engines?

Strange this receives little attention isn’t it? I wish the lawgivers would stop this witch-hunt against smokers and concentrate on the true cause of air pollution today - dirty diesel.

Aled Jones

Via email

POLITICS

Pensioners hit 
in the pocket

Why is it that the most vulnerable people in society (ie the pensioners) get hit the most in their pocket?

Theresa May threatened to take away the fuel allowance which helps thousands of pensioners who need it.

Forget about the richest pensioners. She would have taken it away from most.

If you are unsteady on your feet you can’t get mobility allowance, yet if you are younger you can.

To top it all, my brother, who is 86, has had £225 added to his car insurance on renewal. He contacted several insurance companies who wouldn’t even accept him at all, even though he is accident free and does less than 3,000 miles a year.

In desperation, he contacted Age UK who, as far as I am aware, is there to look after the interest of older people.

They quoted him over £3,000 which is three times his renewal quote.

Why should the good older drivers, who rely on a car to get around, be penalised for the bad driving of the younger driver?

As an 84-year-old pensioner myself, I feel these quotes are so ridiculous that they are almost unbelievable and I am dreading my renewal coming through the letter box.

Malcolm Shedlow

Address supplied

BREXIT

Prison system failure rests with May

On this Sunday’s The Andrew Marr Show (July 7), David Lidington the Minister of Justice gallantly defended his boss Theresa May against possible attacks on her leadership.

One of the topics covered was the current terrible state of the Prison Service.

He deftly side stepped questions on the impact of the savage staffing cuts of officers since 2010.

What was not mentioned by him or the interviewer was the fact that the PM in her six-year tenure as Home Secretary, had overall responsibility for this service. Her failure was surely on a par with her claim to reduce the immigration figures to the tens of thousands. What chance for a good Brexit from her with that record?

Denis Lee

Ashton

EDUCATION

Proving a point
on language

Some time ago, I wrote to this newspaper concerning the money wasted teaching foreign languages in schools.

A short time ago, I was one of about 10 interpreters working at a venue. Not one of us went to school in England!

I believe, that this proves my point.

Donald Rutherford

Address supplied

BODY IMAGE

Are all her armchair 
critics so perfect?

Sarah Lancashire was brilliant in Happy Valley and Last Tango, her acting in those shows was superb she deserved her awards.

I was a bit shocked at all the haters having a go at her appearance though.

The woman is in her 50s, she’s lived a life, is she expected to be a size zero?

She’s put weight on, haven’t we all? Yet the comments were nasty saying she won’t work again if she doesn’t stop eating all the pies.

Are all these people making these remarks perfect themselves?

I doubt it.

Jayne Grayson

Via email