YEP Letters December 10

Richard Lewisohn/BBC/PA Wire .Richard Lewisohn/BBC/PA Wire .
Richard Lewisohn/BBC/PA Wire .
Check out today's YEP letters

Changes needed to ‘Question Time’

Harry Brooke, Meanwood

Now David Dimbleby is retiring from Question Time and a new chair will be taking over, it would seem a good time for the BBC to make some long overdue changes to prevent the programme becoming even more predictable and unwatchable.

There is no point in having the same old politicians, who spout only their party line and are afraid to commit to anything in case they get a rap on the knuckles.

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It would be so refreshing to hear the views of business people, other professionals and the public who have experience of real life.

Government should give priority to health

Prof Dame Parveen Kumar, BMA board of science chair.

IT is very concerning that we are still seeing rising levels of obesity, given the serious cost to our health that this brings.

Rather than seeing improvement, there is in fact, an overall increase in levels of obesity, particularly among women, with children of obese parents three times more likely to be obese themselves.

Almost two-thirds of adults and nearly a third of children in England are either overweight or, worse, obese. The Government must, without delay, place far greater restriction on junk food marketing and introduce a simple standardised approach to food labelling.

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In addition, the Government needs to underpin efforts by local authorities to increase active travel, make the best use of green spaces, and halt the growth of fast food outlets.

The data also shows that strong action is needed on smoking and alcohol, as highlighted in our recent report which showed the significant contribution smoking and drinking make to preventable ill-health and a higher prevalence of cancer, liver disease, heart disease and strokes.

The BMA has long been calling for the Government to make the population’s health a priority by investing in services to reduce smoking, alcohol consumption and those which promote physical activity and a better diet.

This is hugely important and will ultimately save people’s lives by cutting the number of those dying early from preventable ill-health.

Thank you for contributions

Joanna Parker, Leeds Cares.

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Leeds Cares would like to say a very big thank you to each and every one who contributed to our street collection on Sunday, December 2 at the Otley Victorian Fayre.

The afternoon was full of festive spirit and it was great to be part of the Wharfedale community helping to raise money for Wharfedale General Hospital.Leeds Cares supports Leeds Teaching Hospitals to provide exceptional healthcare. Our vision is the best possible health and wellbeing for everyone in Leeds, across Yorkshire and beyond.

An amazing £182.97 was raised on the day, these donations will help us support Leeds Teaching Hospitals develop new healthcare services, provide cutting edge equipment and specialist staff, support ground breaking research and innovation and enable health education and training.

Check pension entitlement

Michael Webb, Wakefield

Regarding Chris Joyce’s letter (YEP October 5), the state pension has favoured women for decades, they have received their state pension at 60, men at 65, can you give a good reason for this? I can’t.

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Many men, including my own father, two of his brothers and my own brother died in their early 60s, mainly due to their workplace environment.

Women also, on average, live longer than men. It would seem the male/female state pension ages were the wrong way round.

Many women from the 1950s onwards opted not to pay the ‘full stamp’ as they often called it, this had an effect on their state pension, a negative one. They relied on their husband’s NI contributions. The government gave notice from the early 2000s and at various times since that the pension age for men and women would be unified.Private pension schemes are totally different from the state pension, the latter is classed as a benefit and like all benefits, is subject to change. The scams effecting private pensions are in the main nothing to do with the provider of the pension, they are often to do with people receiving their lump sum from their pension pot, then geting an offer that’s too good to be true and proves to be just that.

No political party with any chance of gaining power will reverse the pension age changes, not now the job’s done.

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Going back to the 1950s the women used to say to the younger working men “when you come to retirement age, it will be at 60, like us” - funny how things work out, or maybe not!I would suggest to anyone a few years from state pension age that they ask for a statement regarding their expected state pension payment on retirement, there have recently been some changes to the qualifying requirement.

Making a dog’s dinner of Brexit

Judy Goodwin, Altofts

I feel politicians are deliberately making a dog’s dinner of Brexit as 98 per cent don’t want us to leave and they think they can destroy the will of the people by making it impossible. They have just sat on their hands for 45 years nodding through every law and dictact sent their way from the EU , even when it had a negative effect on the UK.They are running scared, they have been found out.

Gift of thanks

Roger Brown, Wakefield.

IT was pleasing to see the giant Christmas tree being placed in Trafalgar Square; a gift from Norway in thanks for the help received from the UK in the War. I am sure I must have missed them, but could someone remind me of similar gifts of appreciation received from our other European ‘‘friends’’?

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