JASON McCartney should listen to some of the more enlightened members of his party before dismissing all women shortlists.
John Bercow MP recently admitted the Conservatives need them now. Tories have just 17 female MPs and their experts don’t expect a huge change at the next General Election.
The truth is Conservative candidate selection methods don’t treat women equally – they just perpetuate the old school tie.
Since women won that long battle to stand as Parliamentary candidates back in 1918, 4,364 men have been elected to Parliament and just 291 women.
Yes, all-women shortlists are controversial, but so too was giving the vote to women – for younger women almost 80 years ago now.
The sad fact is we need drastic measures to level up the playing field – Labour did increase the number of women MPs drastically back in 1997 and continue to improve.
Over the last few months we have all seen far too many wealthy male bankers – many of them friends of David Cameron – messing up our finances. I for one would like the chance to vote for women who get things done rather than men who play ‘yah-booh politics.’
All-women shortlists are the best method of ensuring women are elected in fair numbers.
MPs for the people
THE debate as to whether Labour select from a women-only candidate list is irrelevant.
What the Colne Valley requires is an effective MP. Whether it be Labour, Conservative, Liberal or any other party’s candidate, man or women, they need to have the interest of the local population at the fore, listen and act for the people of the Colne Valley rather than blindly following their political masters blindly and lining their own pockets.
YOUR article in the Examiner regarding the selection process for the next candidate for Colne Valley constituency really sums up Labour.
For years the Labour party has bleated on about equality and fair play for all. Now they tell the public that the selection process will be gender specific in the form of a women-only shortlist.
How’s that for hypocrisy? We all know that the sitting Member of Parliament for Colne Valley Kali Mountford was on a women-only shortlist and supports these new proposals, just as she supported the war in Iraq.
One would have thought that in these difficult times and the days ahead respective political parties would consider the best possible candidate irrespective of race, sex, sexual orientation, or social standing.
On the other hand, perhaps I have got it wrong.
Kirklees a new city?
WHILE soaking in the bath last night, for no particular reason my thoughts idled onto the subject of cities that have changed their names.
Calcutta has become Kolkata, Madras is now Chennai, Bombay is Mumbai, Peking is Beijing and Leningrad is Saint Petersburg.
Of course, Huddersfield is not a city, never was, never will be, but Kirklees on the other hand is a teeming metropolis of over 400,000 people – a city in all but name.
I suddenly realised that Kirklees is not just a made-up name for a council, but an entity, a physical presence, a place.
Huddersfield has become Kirklees.
When the men in grey suites and smoky council chambers created Kirklees back in 1972, the frontiers of the old borough expanded far and wide to consume all in its path.
Now 37 years later and Kirklees the place is firmly established despite the occasional reference to its former name, Huddersfield. The re-naming of the old technical college to Kirklees College is but another slice of history crammed into the jaws of Kirklees.
The appearance of Welcome to Kirklees signs around the borders seems to be a deliberate policy to wipe Huddersfield off the map and from our memories.
The building of tens of thousands of new houses, mini-roundabouts and Tescos will eventually fill in the green gaps between the old towns and villages until Kirklees becomes a vast, unbroken blob of urban sprawl.
The power brokers, politicians and grey suited civil servants will finally realise their dream when Kirklees is elevated to city status.
Excited children in Outer Mongolia will point at the atlas to identify the new city which will stand proudly alongside Beijing, Mumbai and Saint Petersburg.
I can see the letterheads, banners and headlines now – Kirklees, the council that became a city.
We should all feel very proud.
Station’s disabled access
IN RESPONSE to Mr Cruickshank’s letter of March 21, Network Rail has indeed been considering the problem of how to provide full disabled access to Huddersfield station for some time.
It has developed a scheme aimed at achieving just that involving the installation of lifts to provide access to the subway.
This scheme is scheduled for completion in the summer of this year.
However, the delay in completing the redevelopment in St George’s Square may hamper Network Rail’s access to the station, thus delaying the work. I will provide further information as it becomes available.
I understand there are long-term plans to construct an additional platform and entrance on the north side of the station, but that realisation depends on the availability of funding.
William A Kirby
Public Representative on Kirklees Passenger Consultative Committee
No to more homes
IN support of the Lingards Community Association, I am totally against the building of up to 1,700 houses planned by Kirklees Council for the Colne Valley.
I have been a resident in Slaithwaite all my 69 years and, may I say, we the residents have a point.
My house looks onto Linfit Lane and the traffic that comes up and down is unbelievable constantly throughout the day, including many heavy lorries.Š
I dread to think of more houses being built in this area, along with more cars the building projects at Stockerhead and Linfit Lane will create.
Linfit Lane is already far too narrow and seems unable to be widened so please don’t spoil our green valley with these ridiculous building projects, especially in a recession when already many people are already losing their homes.
As a Council Tax payer, I protest strongly against these proposals and ask that they be reconsidered by our councillors in the light of the problems I have highlighted.
Stand up for justice
I REALLY must challenge your anonymous correspondent (Litter louts on March 28).
Just what is the point of reporting an offence if you are not prepared to give evidence? Under the law, hearsay evidence – especially from an anonymous witness – is simply not acceptable.
Nor should it ever be so for this would open the way to conviction by denouncement without evidence – very Stalinist.
Perhaps ‘anonymous’ should be prosecuted for obstructing the police or perverting the course of justice.
S/he does appear to be prepared to see the culprits of what was a very antisocial crime go unpunished. As the quote almost has it, for evil to flourish it is only necessary for good people to do nothing.
Come on, Name & Address Supplied, have the courage of your convictions in order to secure the conviction of these louts. Make another report, but this time be prepared to see it through.
The case of the man fined a totally disproportionate amount of money – and exactly how dropping a cigarette butt can be said to amount to fly-tipping escapes me – is very different.
He was seen committing the offence by someone who was empowered to issue a fixed penalty and was prepared to provide the necessary evidence to a court to secure conviction.
Golden chance missed
REGARDING all the recent publicity given to the money-wasting shambles in St George’s Square, it seems such a pity that a golden opportunity has been missed to use some of the money to improve a link between the railway station and the bus station.
I have seen folks try to negotiate that steep street from the square with shopping or luggage past cars parked on the curb and traffic heading down into the square, leaving little room for pedestrians to manoeuvre.
One wonders as the rail tunnels run under the bus station couldn’t a corridor style link have been constructed? I’m sure it’s not beyond the realms of possibility in this day and age. It could also have been done in unison with better platform links.
I’m sure the pink and grey marble will not be around for too long either – it’s very reminiscent of Marshall’s manmade stone that was very voguish for fireplaces in the 1970s