YEP Letters December 18

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Check out today’s YEP letters

No deal win in second referendum?

Derek Barker, by email

On the subject of a second EU referendum, what many people don’t realise is that if a second referendum takes place, those who wish to leave the EU without a deal would have an overwhelming win.

The reason for this is because the hard Brexiteers have the fundamental human right of expressing their opinion in the referendum because that is still an option that is available, and Theresa May failing to get her deal through parliament will not cancel out that option.

Any referendum that does not include the option of leaving the EU without a deal would be an very clear attempt to exclude and to deny millions of the electorate their perfect legal right to express their views on this matter.

Make sure patients get care they need

Dr Helen Fidler, Deputy chair, BMA consultants committee.

WE are at the very beginning of winter and yet hospitals in England are already feeling the pressure, with demand reaching a record high for November as more patients attend and are admitted to A&E.

Despite the milder weather until now, the number of patients waiting in hospital corridors on trolleys this year has already exceeded the total in 2017 – with the situation only set to get worse in the coming month. On top of this, November saw the number of patients discharged, admitted or transferred within four hours fall to 87.6 per cent – a record low for the month.

Last week we warned that 10,000 extra beds will be needed to guarantee safe care this winter, and with bed occupancy rates already topping safe levels, these latest statistics should set alarm bells ringing for the Government and health chiefs. As politicians remain preoccupied with internal politics and the mess that is Brexit, those working and being cared for on the frontline of our NHS are suffering. And while we continue to wait to hear from the Government on how the promised £20bn a year will be spent in the NHS, there is an urgent need to address these issues now so that patients get the care they need this winter.

Invest in local services

Lord Porter, Chairman, Local Government Association.

THE recent Budget showed the Government is listening to the Local Government Association’s call for desperately-needed investment in our under-pressure local services, such as roads and social care.

Next year will continue to be hugely challenging for all councils, who still face an overall funding gap of £3.2bn in 2019/20. It is therefore disappointing that the Government has not used the settlement to provide further desperately-needed resources for councils next year.

Many councils will be forced to take tough decisions about which services have to be scaled back or stopped altogether to plug funding gaps. We must not forget that it is individuals and communities who feel the impact, whether it is through seeing their local library or leisure centre close, roads deteriorate or support for young people, families and vulnerable adults scaled back.

It is vital that the Government uses the final settlement next month to provide the further resources needed to protect our local services in 2019/20 before ensuring next year’s Spending Review delivers a truly sustainable funding settlement for local government.

As the nation continues to face huge uncertainty, it is councils who are getting on with the job of providing the services that matter to our communities. Investment in these local services, and councils’ prevention and early intervention work, is the only way councils can continue to make a positive difference to their residents’ lives.

Disaster if we leave EU

Les Parkes, Harrogate.

I CAN never understand why so many of our MPs are keen to leave the EU.

Surely they must know that the cost of shipping materials to the Far East will make our product uncompetitive and of course we cannot compete with local labour rates.

At last the entrepreneur Sir James Dyson has realised he has to have his products manufactured in Singapore to be competitive.

I would be grateful if my MP Andrew Jones could explain to me how we can compete with local suppliers in the Far East.

We are so connected with the EU that in many areas we face a disaster if we leave.

The car industry is a good example and I would be grateful if one of our MPs would explain how the car industry will overcome the problems.

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