YEP Says, January 20: It’s time to make Leeds the best place in the UK to grow up

Young skaters enjoying the Ice Cube in the shadow of the Civic Hall.

Young skaters enjoying the Ice Cube in the shadow of the Civic Hall.

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Fun and opportunity must be priorities of new drive.

LEEDS is a great city – but there’s still room for improvement.

The council deserves credit for recognising this and looking to improve the experience of youngsters growing up here. It’s a campaign we’re right behind.

Our aim is to make Leeds the best city in the country for children and young people to live.

To be a child in a city like this should be a wonderful opportunity to get a good education, enjoy great sport and leisure facilities and have access to a rich and varied cultural scene.

Feeling safe and secure is another priority, along with a healthy start to life that stands youngsters in good stead for later years.

But the over-riding goal must be to make sure that growing up in Leeds is fun – and at a time when we’re feeling the full force of austerity measures that’s no easy task.

Just last week the YEP revealed that council is considering £22m worth of cuts to Children’s Services.

It’s why creative thinking – and support from private businesses – will be key to achieving the ambition of making Leeds a child-friendly city.

But first we want to hear the views of the people who really matter – the children and young people of Leeds – about what should change.

After all, they’re the future of this great city – and as such it’s their opinions that matter most.

Latest bins shake-up could cause a stink

THERE’S nothing like a wrangle over bin collections to get people hot under the collar.

And with good reason. We pay for such essential services through our council tax and so are right to expect them to be of a decent standard.

The move to fortnightly black bin collections wasn’t universally popular – although it could be justified by pointing to the increase in recycling levels.

Now the council plans to stop replacing wheelie bins on demand, refusing to collect heavy bins and leaving the ones that are missed for the next collection.

Is it an exaggeration to suggest these latest proposals may cause a bit of a stink?

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