TOWER HAMLETS FARCE OF TRANSPORT FOCUS GROUP

TOWER HAMLETS TRAVEL FOCUS GROUP FARCE

idea-store-whitechapel

I today attended the Travel Focus Group for Tower Hamlets held at the Idea Store at Whitechapel, only to realise that these group meetings are only being held as a tick box event, to show that meetings with the public had been carried out.

The first milestone was the fact that as the venue’s lifts were too small to take my mobility scooter, so it had to be left in the enrtance to the venue, forcing me to walk and use the lift up to the 3rd floor!

Then the refreshments arrived, only after we had already started the meeting!

The meeting was constantly interupted by late arrivals.

As well as attendees being asked what problems they had in getting to this very central venue, the meeting really focused on only three main subjects, Cycling, Walking and Driving.

If I hadn’t brought up some of the problems I have getting around the Borough and on public transport using my mobility scooter, facilities for the disabled would have been totally ignored.

Other than my comments, there were no other wheelchair dependant or mobility scooter dependants at the meeting, and no others with clear disabilities, so although I tried to expand the questions, before we knew it, the one hour allocated was up, and the organisers ensured the meeting finished on schedule, with all of my remaining questions unasked, even though I clearly stated that I had a lot more questions to ask, as the filming of the event will show.

Although there were 3 of these ‘Focus Groups’ being held over 2 days, it is clear to me that this was no more than a paper exercise to please the record books.

The problems being experienced by the disabled in the borough was being brushed under the carpet. Again.

 

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UNNECESSARY BUS STOP CLOSURES

London's East End Guard Dog

ARE ALL BUS STOP CLOSURES NECESSARY?

Bus Stop Closed 1

Recently in my area there has been a TfL bus stop closed (Barnet Grove West Bound) for weeks now.

There is a small building site next to the stop, but there has been very little activity on the site to quantify total closure of this stop.

The biggest problems closure of this particular type of stop is to the elderly, pregnant ladies, and the disabled, many of whom use this stop, as the distance to the next one is quite a distance away.

I have noticed in the past that there are frequent bus stop closures in London for no apparent reason.

IS THIS THE TIP OF THE ICEBURG?

Do you have the same problem?

If you do suffer from unnecessarily closed bus stops, specially in London, please let me know using the  contact form below.

Any personal information will not be passed on…

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SOCIAL LANDLORDS DOWNGRADING COMPLAINTS

London's East End Guard Dog

COMPLAINTS DOWNGRADED TO ENQUIRIES!

It has been drawn to my attention that arms-length housing association Tower Hamlets Homes could be downgrading complaints enabling them to take less action and save time.

An example pointed out to me was a complaint of Noise Nuisance from a neighbour, which for some reason or other has been downgraded to an enquiry.

A matter of Noise Nuisance should have been dealt with as an Anti-Social action, and been dealt with as Anti-Social Behaviour, which should have been dealt with rapidly. Instead it was downgraded to an enquiry, which requires no further action.

HAVE YOU EXPERIENCED THIS?

I am wondering if this is just the tip of the iceburg, therefore I am asking you to let me know if you have had this downgrading happen to you.

If you have been a victim of this downgrading practice, (with any Social Landlord, not just Tower…

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DO UNIVERSITY STUDENTS GET VALUE FOR MONEY?

Are University Lecturers Cutting Corners?

lectures

 

I have recently been speaking to a university student who was commenting that she was unhappy with the value for money she was receiving from her university lecturers.

It would appear that some lecturers are now preparing their lectures using systems like Powerpoint, but seem to be forgetting that the Powerpoint presentation systems are intended as an aid to lectures, not to replace it.

Those lecturers under question now seem to be giving lectures by reading out their Powerpoint presentation verbatim, and not embellishing or expanding on the contents.

Given how much our students are being charged for their University education, and how much they get into debt to pay for it, surely they are entitled to Lecturers actually earning their fees by adding their personal input into supplimenting the automated presentation given.

If lecturers continue to only read out their presentation verbatim, then there is no advantage of the lecturer being there at all. They might a well just distribute their lectures by e-mail to students, and save the students (and their families!) a lot of money.

The purpose of having lectures in the first place is that the students can gain personal input from the lecturer. It is not just a source of income for the lecturer.

If anyone else is experiencing or has experienced this problem, please let me know using the contact form below. It would be interesting to know just how widespread this practice is.

Integration by Stealth: How political union with the EU was achieved without consent

JRwrites

After the British electorate voted to leave the EU in June 2016, many people, particularly on the losing Remain side, searched for someone to blame. David Cameron was a favourite, as he was the one who allowed a vote on the issue. Various politicians on the leave side were also singled out for allegedly misleading the public.

In reality, however, the 2016 referendum result was the natural outcome after decades of massive constitutional change undertaken without the express consent of the British people. When the people got a vote on the issue, they finally decided that enough was enough. So how did it all come to this?

The Accession 

In 1972, the UK, Norway, Ireland and Denmark sought to ratify the Treaty of Accession and formally join the European Community (EC). Norway held a referendum, and upon this being rejected by its electorate, did not ratify the treaty. The United…

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ARE COUNCIL SERVICES IN CHAOS IN TOWER HAMLETS? -UPDATED

 

Just what is happening to care for the elderly and disabled within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets?

 

 

John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets

Just after hearing about Tower Hamlets Council stopping it’s funding for nursery services in the borough, resulting in the closure of nurseries in the area, I had occasion to call their support for the elderly and disabled, !st Response.

My need was simple. All I needed was for them to replace the orthopaedic high back chair, which they provided, as the weld supporting the front of the seat had broken. (No comments about my weight please!)

Chair Orthopaedic High Back 1

Yesterday I contacted my usual number, for the Community Equipment Service to arrange a like for like exchange. They told me that they could arrange for my damaged one to be collected, but I would have to call the !st Response Team to arrange a replacement.

As I was going out, I waited until today to give them a call.

I first called them at 12.24pm, and following the usual verbal reminder that calls could be recorded etc, the line was switched to a muzak drone,  and a there was no sign of anyone answering, I assumed that they must be at lunch.

I called them back at 4.05pm, and spoke to a gentleman named Mohammed.

He told me that he couldn’t understand why the CES could not deal with me, so he first said that he would call them and let me know the result.

He soon called me back saying he still couldn’t sort things out, as the person I’d spoken to was not in. He asked if I could call him back tomorrow, around 3.00pm. I asked if it were not more logical for him to call me when he had the information, but he insisted that I should call him, so I could remind him of the problem.

I couldn’t believe my ears then. I asked him to clarify that my problem could so be easily forgotten by him. He confirmed this, adding that he had a lot of work on, so he might forget me. He then suggested that I could purchase an orthopaedic chair myself, or use another chair or settee and he could arrange risers for them. I pointed out that I don’t have any other suitable chair or settee to use. (Which is true, as 1/3 of my living room is a mini-office I use for blogging and my voluntary charity work, ,1/3 a parking and workshop area for my mobility scooter (as the Council have told me that I can’t keep it outside my flat!) and the last third is my living room!) and when I also pointed out that I don’t have the money to buy a replacement, he told me that the Council are no longer providing the elderly and disabled with the standard orthopaedic chair.

At this point I pointed out how bad all of this would look on one of my blog sites, (like this one!)  he then said he’d call me back.

He called me back to let me know that he has passed on the case to his manager, and I will hear from her soon.

I received one more quick call from him to confirm my address! Yes, you heard right, even though I confirmed my address the first time I spoke to him.

I am seriously worried about the capability of those in council employment, and the standards they set.

Within a 12 hour period I have found that they have reduced service to Parents, the Elderly and the Disabled. Who’s next, the Deceased? (Perhaps I shouldn’t have given you that idea!)

The time has come for a service of outside assessors to come into the management  operations of Tower Hamlets Council and Tower Hamlets Homes, in order to assess their various department’s efficiency. And it can’t be done too soon.

I’ll keep you updated of how things develop.

Update: Thursday 30th November 2018

Four weeks have passed, and I have not heard from anyone on this matter.

I am having to use a typing chair in place of my orthopaedic chair, and as it’s definitely not designed for the use it’s getting, it is already creaking badly. But even worse, every day my already severely damaged spine is becoming more painful.

I called 1st Response today to find out what’s happening.

A lady answered the telephone, and I asked what the situation is on my chair, and informed her of the situation I am in.

I was informed that I had been put on a list for re-assessment before they can issue my chair.

I asked how long it would take for this assessment to take place, and she told me that they have no idea. I pointed out that the chair I am having to use is on casters which do not have locks or brakes, and so it moves backwards every time I try to stand or sit, and is definitely not orthopaedic.

I pointed out that as the condition of my spine is deteriorating daily, I am in great pain, and it can’t be much longer before something gives way.  Most likely the spine itself.

I was informed that I would be placed onto a priority list, but they still have no idea how long it would be before I am even re-assessed, let alone to get the chair.

I finally had no option but to leave things with them, and telling them that I would be putting this on the internet, and will call them if I don’t hear from them by Wednesday of next week.

I also made it clear that if anything detrimental happens with my spine, there could now be legal consequences.

I’ll let you know what happens next!