YEP Says, May 25: Delay in litter fine law that is costing city dear

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CURRENT laws on litter aren’t tough enough – a fact underlined by the amount of the stuff that’s dropped on the streets of Leeds and right across Yorkshire every year.

CURRENT laws on litter aren’t tough enough – a fact underlined by the amount of the stuff that’s dropped on the streets of Leeds and right across Yorkshire every year.

Cleaning up this city costs £8m every year – and that money comes straight out of our taxes. Clearing roadsides is particularly costly and dangerous, so preventing littering from vehicles is vital.

Local councils have been saying for years that they need new powers to fine those thoughtless drivers who throw litter from their windows. After all, a £75 fine will make most people think twice.

Finally, last year, the Government agreed to introduce a new law giving councils the authority to issue a fine to the registered keeper of the vehicle in the same way as penalties are levelled for speeding or parking offences.

Yet the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has delayed producing the required regulations to bring the law into effect. This is clearly ridiculous and this delay must now end.

With austerity measures meaning councils such as Leeds find themselves increasingly strapped for cash, time is of the essence.

The sooner we have an effective deterrent for dropping litter, the sooner we’ll get that bill down. So do your bit by signing the petition for one now.

Service offers a vital lifeline

DESPITE the fact that society has come a long way in recent decades in terms of combating prejudice, it’s still not easy to be different.

That much is made clear in the story of ‘Jay’, who today tells how difficult life has been for him as a gay man with mental health issues.

Up until recently, the excellent Leeds Survivor Led Crisis Service did not have a dedicated LGBT support group. Four years later it has two, offering lifesaving help and advice to Jay and many others.

There are many hurdles to overcome when you recognise you’re different to others and this lifeline will give those who may be struggling the reassurance they need.

A computer generated image of plans for a crematorium in Garforth, Leeds. PIC: Westerleigh Group Ltd

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