From Daily Mirror: Tory welfare chief Esther McVey suggested her own party’s benefit cuts are “fake news” in a shameless party conference speech.
Theresa May fails to acknowledge responsibility for devastation caused to Windrush Generation citizens
Via the Labour Party: Theresa May waffles on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, instead of accepting responsibility for lives being turned upside down by the Windrush scandal she personally caused with her policies while Home Secretary.
Shameful that the Prime Minister either doesn’t know or doesn’t care how many people from the Windrush generation lost their homes, their jobs, and were denied NHS treatment.Theresa May's hostile environment policy is a disgrace and Labour will scrap it.
Posted by Jeremy Corbyn on Sunday, September 30, 2018
From Daily Mirror: Calamity-prone Tory Chris Grayling has refused to resign despite a damning report into this summer’s rail chaos finding “nobody took charge”.
Tory Council approves £38k for iPhones for councillors minutes after saving £43k by doubling disabled bus fares
From Evolve Politics: The Tory majority on Lancashire County Council voted through measures to double bus fares for disabled people from 50p to £1, estimated to save the council £44,000… just minutes after approving the spending of up to £38,000 on state-of-the-9art smartphones for individual use by councillors.
With both measures approved, councillors will now be given the opportunity of handpicking a device for their own individual use, with a top-of-the-range iPhone 7, costing £455 each, being among the choices.
From The Guardian: The Tory government has stopped asking the British public whether they are for or against fracking for shale gas, just weeks before the first fracking operation in seven years is due to start.
The number of people against extracting shale gas has outweighed those in favour since 2015, and the latest polling by officials found 32% opposed with just 18% in support.
Now the Tory government, which backs fracking and recently relaxed planning rules to help the shale industry, has temporarily suspended that line of questioning.
“This is scandalous as the government knows full well that there is overwhelming public opposition to fracking,” said Rebecca Long-Bailey, Labour’s shadow business secretary.
Tony Bosworth, a campaigner at Friends of the Earth, said: “Perhaps having recently tried to change planning rules so that fracking companies could drill more easily, they were just scared of a record bad survey result for them this time, so have stopped even asking anymore.”
The question was dropped from the latest update of the four-year-old public attitudes tracker run by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
Transport Secretary accused of ‘rank hypocrisy’ after former Carillion boss given top-paying HS2 job
From Daily Mirror: Tory Transport Secretary Chris Grayling has been accused of “rank hypocrisy” by the RMT union for rewarding a former boss of collapsed outsourcing company Carillion with a top-paying job on the HS2 project.
From Daily Mirror: Boris Johnson has refused to budge from his £20million taxpayer-funded mansion, as Downing Street admitted he could still be there for “weeks”. There is growing anger as he remains at the luxury official residence, despite resigning as Foreign Secretary 12 days ago.
The former foreign secretary failed to get permission from the government’s appointments watchdog for his role as a columnist for the Daily Telegraph.
Former ministers should apply to the advisory committee on business appointments (Acoba) before accepting a new role under the ministerial code.
Ministers who have been members of the cabinet should not accept new appointments for three months after leaving office.
Johnson returned to his £275,000-a-year Daily Telegraph column on Monday. He gave it up when he was appointed foreign secretary in July 2016.
A spokesman for Acoba said Johnson had not sought its advice, as required, before returning to the role, the Daily Mail reported.
“Ministers are written to on leaving office to remind them of the responsibility to follow the government’s rules set out in the ministerial code,” a spokesperson said.
From The Guardian: A Labour MP who discharged herself from hospital and attended Parliament in her pyjamas in order to take part in a Brexit vote has accused Tory whips of stripping her of her dignity.
Naz Shah, the MP for Bradford West, said parliamentary voting procedures were archaic and undignified after the whips refused her request to be paired with a Tory MP to cancel out each other’s vote – a practice that allows MPs to be absent from Parliament with good reason.
She has been in hospital since last Friday with severe nerve pain, an ongoing complication from a hit-and-run collision several years ago.
From ScotRef: SNP MP Mhairi Black on the appalling anti-democratic tactics used by Tory MPs in the House of Commons to filibuster out Private Members Bills they don’t like.
(Mhairi was talking on a pro-Scottish independence platform, but whatever your views on that topic this is a good watch!)
Everyone needs to watch this at least once. And I mean *everyone* 👍⚔️🗡️⚔️🗡️⚔️#ScotRef
Posted by ScotRef on Saturday, April 7, 2018
From Nursing Notes: Jeremy Hunt, Tory Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, walked out of parliament only seconds before he was due to answer questions over the Learning Disabilities Mortality Review.
Barbara Keeley, Shadow Minister for Mental Health and Social Care, tabled the urgent question for Jeremy Hunt to make a statement on key concerns raised in the Learning Disabilities Mortality Review that was published earlier this month.
The Learning Disabilities Mortality Review (LeDeR) programme was established to support local areas to review the deaths of people with learning disabilities, identify learning from those deaths, and take forward the learning into service improvement initiatives.
The investigation looked at specific health inequalities and the barriers that prevent people with learning difficulties from accessing appropriate healthcare services.
The report provides 189 learning points or recommendations for service improvement of which the report identities Inter-agency collaboration and communication, awareness of the needs of people with learning disabilities and the understanding and application of the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) and the most significant.
From Daily Mirror: Theresa May has said it was right to slash payments to bereaved children who have lost a parent.
From Daily Mirror: It is “shameful” and “unsubstantiated” to claim benefit cuts have caused suicides, Tory minister Sarah Newton declared today.
Theresa May refuses to reveal any details of disabled benefit claimants’ suicides, instead says “work is the best route out of poverty”
From Daily Mirror: Theresa May has refused to reveal any details of suicides by disabled benefit claimants, instead cruelly declaring: “Work is the best route out of poverty.”
From The Guardian: Chris Grayling, the Tory transport secretary, has been accused of passing the buck over severe rail disruption on Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern trains, for which he blamed staff shortages caused by “militant unions”.
A report from the National Audit Office criticises the government’s management of the UK’s largest #rail franchise, held by Govia Thameslink, and concludes that policy decisions have had a negative impact on millions of passengers.
The report says Department for Transport officials failed to grasp the potential impact on passengers of combining an increase in capacity, targets to improve services and the increase in driver-only operated trains, which led to strikes by union members.
However, Chris Grayling said blame for the disruption should primarily be shouldered by the unions for their decision to take industrial action.
From Welfare Weekly: Civil servants working for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) have been handed over £40 million in performance-related bonuses, despite serious problems with the rollout of Universal Credit and a startling increase in the number of successful disability benefit appeals.
Figures show DWP staff were awarded £44 million in “good performance” bonuses in the last year, while thousands of new universal credit claimants were forced to a wait a minimum six weeks for their first payment and left at risk of becoming homeless because of rent arrears.
According to the figures, 240 senior DWP officials pocketed a total £760,000 in bonuses, while a further 88,300 junior staff were each handed an extra £1,750 in their pay packets.
From Daily Mirror: Theresa May has refused to appoint a diverse panel to the Grenfell Tower inquiry, it emerged today. It is feared that the retired Court of Appeal judge lacks first-hand experience of the complex cultural factors underpinning the Grenfell Tower tragedy.
Zoe Williams writes in The Guardian: “The people of Taunton Deane, according to their MP, Rebecca Pow, have never had it better, thanks to Conservative policies. A combination of the higher minimum wage, the higher personal threshold for paying income tax and the frozen fuel duty meant people had ‘thousands more in their pockets’.
“Good intentions would manifest in curiosity about the lived experience of one’s policies, which would in turn entail figuring out what those policies amounted to in the aggregate. Failure to ask such questions is not born out of ignorance: it is critical to the Conservative narrative to deny, forcefully and sometimes gleefully, that anyone in the country is struggling.
“The smart ones do this with ‘economicky’ words – David Freud explained the surge in food banks as a simple issue of supply and demand. ‘Food from a food bank – the supply – is a free good, and by definition there is an almost infinite demand for a free good,’ he triumphantly declared. Because who would go to a shop when they could scam limitless free tinned tomatoes out of their community?
“The confident ones simply deny the premise. There aren’t any unemployed people, according to Philip Hammond. Theresa May thinks nurses use food banks for ‘many complex reasons’.”
The quote used by The House magazine to promote their interview with Tory trade secretary Liam Fox is:
Tory trade secretary #LiamFox: If UK trade figures are bad, it's nothing to do with me.
From Evolve Politics: Just five months after a catastrophic fire at Grenfell Tower claimed the lives of approximately 80 people, Kensington’s local Conservative party have been exposed conducting a survey asking local residents if they still cared about the tragedy.
In the letter, first published on the Guido Fawkes website, the Kensington, Chelsea & Fulham Conservatives survey asks residents ‘how important’ the Grenfell Tower tragedy was to them still. Read more