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Recorder letters: Prostitution and local elections

PUBLISHED: 12:00 29 April 2018

Police and council on an action day to tackle prostitition amongst other issues. Picture: PAUL BENNETT

Police and council on an action day to tackle prostitition amongst other issues. Picture: PAUL BENNETT

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Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Speak out about prostitution

Shazada Ali, full address supplied, writes:

This time last year, anti-social behaviour peaked with brazen displays of prostitution, residents’ front gardens used for such activities and sexual litter such as used condoms littering the floor.

With the combined efforts of the Met Police and Redbridge/Barking and Dagenham Council, this behaviour significantly improved to the extent that I personally haven’t seen or heard of anything for the past few months...until now.

It seems like after lying low, this issue has raised its ugly head again.

On April 18, at 7.30pm (so in broad daylight for this time of year), two women approached my husband with the offer of an “exotic massage” and other such services. The next day, whilst walking to work, we noticed used condoms littering our streets.

I am writing to residents to say that if you are approached for such services please report this online to the Met Police or to our local neighborhood team.

Please do not keep quiet about it.

There isn’t a quick solution but we need to help the police and council maintain the hard work they have done.

This kind of behaviour isn’t safe for the women involved nor safe for the residents of the area (who are threatened, whose homes are defiled and whose women are mistakenly approached to offer such services) and certainly not a good example for young children walking to school with sexual litter paving their route to school.

A positive vision for all residents

Paul Canal, leader, Redbridge Conservative Group, writes:

Over the last four weeks Redbridge Conservatives have set out a compelling positive vision for Redbridge and all its communities and residents.

On May 3, residents can vote for a better Redbridge. They don’t have to put up with unswept streets, pot holed roads and rampant fly-tipping anymore.

Nor do they have to accept appalling Town Hall waste, with millions spent on consultants and PR.

Redbridge residents can also call a stop to Labour gambling with £100m of their money on dodgy property deals.

They can call a stop to planned Council Tax increases of 20per cent or more.

Above all, they can call a stop to a council deaf to their concerns, blind to their demands, a council that no longer puts them and their families first.

We promise to scrap Labour’s planned 20pc Council Tax rise, saving residents over £300 per year.

We also pledge a “return to basics”. We will empty your bins weekly, sweep your streets properly, bring back the Redbridge Community Police Team.

We will end the scourge of fly-tipping, cut the £1m PR budget and invest the money saved in services for our vulnerable.

Above all, we pledge a return to a listening, accessible and accountable council, an end to secret “backroom dealing”, a council once again responsive to the needs of the borough, its communities and its residents.

Greener, healthier and fairer borough

Paul Donovan, Jo Blackman, Daniel Morgan Thomas, Labour candidates for Wanstead Village, write:

Redbridge will be greener, healthier and fairer under Labour.

The Labour Party manifesto offers an intergenerational programme that delivers for all people across the communities.

Labour are looking to provide the opportunities for people to flourish, from new swimming pools to increased cycle routes across the borough.

Families are at the centre of Labour’s programme, with a commitment to increase school places as well as park play equipment.

The role as champion of the living wage, that will see subcontracted staff having to be paid the better rate, is also a family orientated policy.

Better pay means people not being forced to do two or three jobs just to make ends meet – with all the negative impacts this can have on family life.

The environment is also at the top of the agenda, with commitments to introduce clean air zones around schools and increasing recycling levels to 50per cent.

There will be 1,000 new affordable homes built over the next five years plus an extension of the landlord licensing scheme borough wide, improving conditions for renters.

The borough will become more disability friendly if Labour are returned on May 3.

These are all measures that can help to make our borough a better place to live. It won’t be easy, given the cuts of 44pc from central government funding but Labour is determined to improve life in the borough.

Check out various parties’ promises

Krishan Puri, Charter Avenue, Ilford, writes:

Voting for council elections is due to take place on Thursday, May 3. Electioneering has gone into full swing.

Manifestos published by various political parties have been delivered to potential voters. They make interesting reading.

I live in Newbury ward of Redbridge Council. The ward manifesto obviously focuses on local issues. One issue of significant interest locally has been step-free access to Newbury Park station.

Interestingly, the two main political parties, Conservative and Labour, and an Independent candidate are vying with one another to claim credit for persuading TfL to install step-free access currently under construction.

In the Conservative manifesto, candidate Afsor Hussain writes that he “helped devise a campaign to put an escalator…” at the station. In fact, the plan is for lifts and not an escalator.

One of the Independent candidates, David Stevens, in his election address, claims that he “campaigned along with other members of his association, to have lifts installed at Newbury Park station…”

The Labour Party manifesto states: “We supported residents groups petitioning for step-free access – and lobbied members of parliament and the mayor of London Sadiq Khan” on this issue. This statement, at least, does not claim exclusive credit for the party alone and, as such, seems relatively fair.

I am struggling to figure out who really deserves the credit.

As a resident concerned about fair elections, I urge voters to carefully check the claims and promises made by various parties and candidates before casting their votes on May 3.


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