YEP Letters: July 23

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Have your say

I read with sadness the letter from Mrs L Vorlicky of Cookridge (YEP, July 12), who says she can no longer support the Royal National Lifeboat Institution as she was informed that raffles were being run to pay for refreshments provided free for RNLI supporters at various promotional coffee mornings and so on around the country.

Not knowing the details or from where this information came, I cannot make a realistic comment, other than to say categorically that in over 50 years of supporting the RNLI, I have never heard of this.

The organisation has a very good reputation for keeping fundraising administration costs to a few per cent, unlike many charities, some of whom employ fundraising companies.

I personally have had a lifetime interest in the RNLI and from the 1970s was an assistant launching tractor driver at the Flamborough Stations.

My certificate states we saved 83 lives. During that time I was eternally grateful to all the supporters for providing us with the best equipment needed to do the job.

Although retired, I still remain a member of the Leeds Branch, as well as Vice Chairman and Box Secretary, looking after the collecting boxes.

We are now few in number and of a certain age. We only do supermarket collections in the North Leeds area and counter box collections. But every penny of what we’re given goes to RNLI funds.

All my work for the lifeboat service, along with that of thousands of other supporters has been entirely voluntary, with no funding whatsoever either received or asked for.

There are many charities out there. It is up to us all to judge the ones to support, and I hope that means judging the RNLI fairly.

Paul Thompson, Scarcroft

Let us all vote on our own pay rise

I agree with Peter Neal (YEP, July 21) that we should not have all the strike action without the correct votes being taken on all sides. But we wouldn’t need to take strike action at all if we could sit down and vote ourselves a £25,000 rise like the MPs.

We keep getting told the economy is on the up and we have the fastest growing economy in the world, but there is nothing for the workers.

Perhaps if the people in Westminster couldn’t vote through their own pay rise they too may take their bat and ball home.

If the country as a whole is to truly prosper then we must all be in this together.

Barry Leonard, Bramley

It seems the poor public sector workers aren’t happy with their lot.

Maybe they would like to be a construction worker who only gets four weeks holiday a year, no sick pay and no pension of any substance.

The huge pension pay outs to the privileged few in the public sector highlight the serious abuse of taxpayers’ money.

The police, politicians, civil servants, managers in local authorities, the NHS and education are heavily subsidised by the private sector and can expect to retire earlier than most.

The Government doesn’t owe these people a living. They should think themselves lucky they have a job, stop moaning and get on with it.

Malcolm Nicholson, Barwick-in-Elmet

War does not solve anything

The intransigence of both sides in the conflict in Gaza is costing the innocents dearly.

Hamas denies the right of Israel to exist and continues to fire totally ineffective and inaccurate missiles into Israel.

In response, Israel feels totally justified in responding with indiscriminate and disproportionate force.

I have no affinity to either side but as a father and grandfather my heart bleeds when I see innocent children’s bodies being buried.

This situation and that in Ukraine convinces me that the human race has learned very little from past conflicts.

How many more will have to pay with their lives before we get the message that war solves absolutely nothing?

Jack Banner, Meanwood

Perfect record unlike the Lords

My grandson achieved perfect school attendance in his first year, receiving a small trophy which has pride of place in his bedroom.

On reading this year’s school report, he excelled in most subjects but was marked down for time lost one day.

He had been violently sick after lunch and I was contacted, collecting him just before 2pm.

If they can clock on in the House of Lords at 9am and walk straight out the door again qualifying for £300, I’m sure my grandson was entitled to full attendance for 75 missed minutes when I took him to the doctor.

Alex Gillies, Killingbeck

Cancellation bad for culture

I am disappointed, but not surprised, that the annual Opera in the Park has been cancelled.

The writing has been on the wall since February when its sister event, Party in the Park, was cancelled.

Given that the two events shared a stage and other infrastructure, the cancelling of one would always have seriously undermined the viability of the other.

The situation wasn’t helped by the introduction last year of charging for the previously free events, which saw attendance plummet.

Leeds is considering a bid to be the European Capital of Culture in 2023. I find this culling of cultural events totally contrary to that aim.

No doubt the council’s ruling administration will blame the cancellations on government budget cuts, but that is simply not true.

There are other ways of keeping these events running that the administration chose to ignore.

I will be doing my utmost to ensure we put on events that appeal to all the people of Leeds.

Councillor Dan Cohen, Alwoodley Ward

Get out of EU while we can

Britain can look forward to years of persecution from the EU.

David Cameron and the front benches of the three main parties are determined to keep us in no matter what it costs.

Why they are so obsessed with staying in is puzzling to say the least. As Russian dissident Vladimir Bukovski said: “If you go through all the structure and features of the emerging European monster, you will notice that it more and more resembles the Soviet Union”.

For this, we are paying £55m a day. I defy any Europhile to name anything that has improved Britain since we joined.

It can’t be trade, we did more before we signed up to join the Common Market.

Cameron talks tough in Parliament but it’s all an act. He is a joke to the other EU leaders and is certainly no match for the new ‘Iron Lady’ Angela Merkel.

He has promised us a referendum on our EU membership if the Conservatives are elected after the next election.

How naive does he think we are? Even if we voted by a huge majority to leave the EU altogether, he knows he doesn’t have to because Parliament is not legally obliged to do so.

Unless we leave, our exporters will always be strangled by EU regulations which now cost the UK at least six per cent of our GDP to implement, that’s about £90bn a year.

We can’t afford to be members of this disastrous, undemocratic mess which is collapsing anyway and should get out while we can.

Terry Watson, Adel

YEP Letters: October 19