YEP Letters: January 16

Have your say

In reply to J Carder (Your Views, January 12) who blames a lack of funding by the present Government for the problems facing the NHS, I would refer him to the recent interview with the CEO of Scarborough Hospital after he declared a ‘state of emergency’ at his hospital.

He stated quite categorically that money was not a problem. It was the number of positions they were unable to fill in their A&E department.

This is because the doctors want to work a five-day, nine to five contract.

Labour’s agreeing to GPs opting out of out of hours responsibility, while at the same time nearly doubling their salaries to over £100,000, was yet another criminal act of that disastrous period of government that has blighted our lives forever.

When being interviewed at the time of this debacle, a member of the representatives panel on behalf of GPs said that they only quoted the figure and removal of out of hours responsibility as a joke and they were dumbfounded when it was agreed.

In the same issue of the YEP, Graham Waite hits the nail on the head highlighting the red herring of OAPs and the ageing population causing the NHS problems.

It sits fairly and squarely on Labour’s shoulders, with the four million and counting increase in our population.

Most of the OAPs have contributed for 50 years and are still contributing from their meagre pensions.

Let Labour hang their heads in eternal shame for what they have done to our country, its citizens and its institutions.

Bernard Duffy, North Yorkshire

We’ve never had it so good

As an OAP, my standard of living has been helped enormously by the coalition freezing council tax for four years out of this five-year fixed term Parliament, with only a 1.99 per cent rise last time of 50p a week more for my modest home.

This, unlike the relentless rises in the old ‘rates’, then council tax under Labour 
(new or old) with little to show in better services, just a growing army of non-jobsworths.

Also, the “triple lock guarantee” gives a reasonable increase in basic state pension to look forward to, unlike New Labour’s derisory 75p a week, plus the 100 per cent tax increase when the 10p band was abolished by Gordon Brown – with millionaires paying just 40 per cent top rate – five per cent less than they do now.

All this, with lower food prices, cheaper petrol and diesel and reductions in my direct debit charges from both British Gas and NPower. I wonder just what Labour has to offer us.

D Boyes, Rodley

Speed bumps are road risk

We regularly hear Leeds City Council complaining that the money they have been allocated by central government to tackle potholes in roads is insufficient.

Perhaps if the council stopped wasting material and manpower erecting speed bumps and 20mph signs everywhere, they could re-assign these resources to repairing potholes and would have the finances to complete the job.

Just the other day I saw council highway staff constructing speed bumps on a road in Horsforth that has a 40mph speed limit.

Anyone hitting a speed bump at 40mph will be lucky not to cause an accident.

I also foresee additional taxpayers’ money being doled out to meet the mass of likely claims for damage to cars caused by these speed bumps.

All speed bumps do is encourage drivers to find alternatives to the main highways, thus creating ‘rat-runs’ through the back streets of housing estates which actually increases the likelihood of a child being involved in a road traffic accident.

Martin Phillips, Cookridge

Post office is a no- phone zone

I wanted to have a word with someone at the Moortown sorting office so I rang the number that had been left on the card, as I was out when they delivered a parcel to me.

After getting several options which I rang several times, I was not able to speak to a person to answer my query.

In frustration I went on the internet and found the name address and Leeds telephone number of the Moortown office so I rang it and got all the same options with the additional one of “complaints”.

At last, after trying various options, a human voice answered me. Success, I thought.

“Is that the Moortown delivery office?” I asked.

“No,” said the man at the other end, “I’m in Plymouth.”

“Can you put me through?” I asked. “Afraid not,” he said, “you are best going up there.”

I presume if the Moortown office does have a phone, it is for outgoing calls only.

Malcolm Shedlow, Moortown

Freedom at a terrible price

May I point out something that some commentators seem to have forgotten? Freedom of speech does not mean that you can say what you want, in whatever way you want with impunity.

As some internet “trolls” are finding out, posting certain types of messages carries consequences.

Thus, if you satirise a religion which has extremists in its membership then there will be consequences. Freedom of speech has consequences for those that exercise it and especially if that freedom incorporates satire.

That does not mean that I approve of the response demonstrated in Paris.

R Kimble, Kirkstall

Treat drunks at police station

One way to help deal with the A&E crisis would be to treat the drunken revellers in a separate unit, preferably within or near a police station. It could be manned by medical staff and the police.

It would ease the pressure in casualty units, and allow patients who have real conditions to be treated with shorter waiting times.

Judith Harris, Moortown

Conservatives went off rails

Your editorial has had another go at criticising the railways (YEP, January 2).

May I point out that it is Conservative governments that have ruined what once was an excellent service, starting with Dr Beeching’s cuts in 1963, followed by a lack of investment for 10 years under Mrs Thatcher and then being denationalised by the Major government.

The railway is the shambles it is today because of this.

There have been few replacements of rolling stock for 30 years so train operating companies are stuck with the trains allocated to them.

They are not allowed to own the trains and no one in this country builds them. Also, train operating companies have to make a profit and so the fares go up.

This will continue until the railway is nationalised and infrastructure put in place to improve the whole system.

As for the disruption in London at Christmas, this was essential work which is often carried out at this time of year because there are no trains to interrupt it.

It just happened to overrun because of weather and other factors. Get over it.

Mel Smart, Farsley

Truth behind PM’s bluster

Does anyone believe David Cameron when he says he is threatening to boycott the TV debates out of solidarity with the Greens rather than because he’s worried about Nigel Farage scoring points against him?

No, thought not.

R Williams, Roundhay