International Day for Disabled People – 1st December 2016

Brent is celebrating the International Day for Disabled People on 1st December 2016. Marked across the globe, this day has been celebrated by the United Nations since 1992.
The day aims to increase understanding of the barriers facing people with disabilities and promote participation and inclusion. The event will incorporate a Job Fair and a Health and Well-being Zone  The theme for 2016 is “Achieving the Goals for the future we want”

The event on  1st  December 2016   will be held at the Brent Civic Centre from 10am to 3pm and is an opportunity to engage with residents, carers and colleagues.

Please contact
equality@brent.gov.uk if you wish to register early for this event.
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It’s Time to Talk About Hate Crime, Thursday 21 July

Hate crime is the initial focus of a new series of public meetings which aim to tackle difficult issues in our community.

Taking place on 21 July, the hate crime event is part of the Council’s wider ‘It’s Time to Talk’ campaign which aims to empower residents and community leaders to talk about difficult issues and work together with the authorities to tackle them. Important challenges such as hate crime, child sexual exploitation, extremism, gang culture, domestic abuse and harmful practices are all expected to be discussed at separate events throughout the year.

The event on 21 July has a number of high-profile speakers attending, including Dr Stevie-Jade Hardy – Centre for Hate Studies, Stephen Brooks MBE – Coordinator of the Disabled Hate Crime Network and special guest keynote speaker – creative pioneer Samuell Benta. Topics such as what exactly a hate crime is, how big the problem is in Brent and the role of social media in the context of hate crime, will be discussed.

Please do come along. To book a free ticket, please visit https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/its-time-to-talk-hate-crime-tickets-25991098074.

Neasden Community Festival on Saturday 9th July 11am to 4pm at St Catherine’s Church

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We have been busy working with the Church and Daniel’s Estate Agent to put together this community festival event. We have stage performances lined up for the day and stalls so feel free to come along and celebrate with us.

Brazil to Brent exhibition opens up at Willesden Library

The Olympic Games open in the Brazilian city, Rio de Janeiro this summer, and at home in Brent, an exciting new exhibition called Brazil to Brent opens in the Exhibition Space on the second floor at The Library at Willesden Green.brazil flag

The exhibition asks what it means to be Brazilian in Brent. Julia Evangelista, is an artist working with Brent Museum and Archives to develop the exhibition:

“Well, the whole point of this project was to give Brazilians a chance to celebrate themselves, and to say in their own words what it means to be Brazilian.

“One of the most important things that the people we talked to stressed was the diversity of Brazil, many emphasised that there are numerous sub-cultures, and much more to the country than just samba and carnival.

“A theme that came up again and again was the importance of community. In Brazil, people spend a lot of time together. It’s a very inclusive society, from the many games and sports that we play, that involve the young and the old, to the music, and the food we eat, we do things with other people and build ties this way. Relationships are very important.

“I would encourage everyone to come along and have a look at what’s going on at this exhibition. It is very much a collaborative project, which will grow from people’s input.

“Between July and September this year there will be a chance to try dance, music, listen to stories, and attend a family workshop and even puppetry. Everyone is welcome and we really hope to see many people taking part, getting to know the people they live and work amongst.”

Brazil to Brent is being developed by Brent’s Heritage team, in collaboration with Battersea Arts Centre and Brazilian artist, Julia Evangelista, from Seethrough Theatre.

The exhibition and workshops run from 1 July to 18 September 2016.

Email museum.archives@brent.gov.uk for more information.

Brent Response to Brexit

The Leader of Brent Council has moved to reassure European Union Citizens, local businesses and investors in West London following the referendum result which was announced earlier today (June 24).
 
Across the UK nearly 52 percent of people voted to leave the European Union (EU) while in London and Brent the majority wanted to remain. 72,523 Brent residents voted for the UK to Remain in the EU, while 48,881 voted to leave.
 
The vote to leave has caused turbulence in stock markets across the world and raised fears of what a ‘Brexit’ could mean – in particular for workers and families from Europe.
 
Brent Council has vowed to work closely with local businesses, public sector partners and local communities following the nationwide result.
 
Councillor Muhammed Butt, Leader of Brent Council, said the consequences of the result will be discussed at a meeting of the West London Alliance (WLA) on Monday. He said: “Brent is the most diverse place in the UK and a place where people from all over the world come together to work, live and play. This is one of the things I am most proud of about Brent and one of our key strengths.
 
“My message to our neighbours and co-workers who are EU citizens and also to investors and employers in West London is not to panic. Nothing will change instantly overnight.
 
“European nationals will continue to enjoy the same rights as they have now and any changes will be publicised well in advance.”
 
The Confederation of British Industry has called for “strong and calm leadership to reassure the markets” and the Governor of the Bank of England has also moved to reassure the markets.
 
Cllr Roxanne Mashari, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Growth, Employment and Skills, said: “The council has received many calls from EU citizens concerned about the possible impact of the referendum result and about their right to stay in the UK.
 
“The council’s message is clear: Brent is open for business and investment. We value the hard work of EU citizens and the positive contribution they make to Brent. In the short-term the UK remains a member of the EU with existing laws and treaty obligations in place. Rules on tariffs, movement of goods and individuals will not change until any renegotiation is complete. We will work hard with other local councils, local business leaders and the West London Alliance to provide the information and support needed at this time.”
 
Andrew Dakers, Chief Executive of West London Business, said: “West London remains one of the best places in the world to do business. West London is exceptionally well connected by air, road and rail. We have a highly skilled workforce that is the most productive in London. We are also home to some of the UK’s leading entrepreneurs and Higher Education institutions.
 
“In the weeks ahead we will work with the local business community and our West London Alliance partner local authorities to ensure that the specific business implications arising from Brexit, and any support needed, is fully understood to ensure long term economic growth is sustained.”

New Brent Local Safeguarding Children Board website

The Brent LSCB now has a new website and also now has a Twitter account and aims to raise the profile of the LSCB and safeguarding children and young people in Brent. Please follow Brent LSCB on @LSCBBrentThey’ll also be launching a newsletter. 

Access the new website here LINK

Brent Council Cabinet Confirmed

Cllr Harbi Farah and Cllr Wilhelmina Mitchell Murray have both join the council’s Cabinet for the first time following the council’s Annual Meeting and Mayor Making ceremony last night. Harbi is also the first Councillor of Somali origin to serve on Cabinet in Brent.

The appointments were made after Cllr Ruth Moher, former Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, and Cllr James Denselow, former Cabinet Member for Stronger Communities, both decided not to stand for their positions previously.

It was a hotly contested AGM process. Labour is the largest Party at the Council and we held a vote between the Labour Group on Saturday to put forward to the Council for appointment. Cabinet appointments are now up until 2018 which is when the next local election will be held.

There are direct individual elections for the Leader and Deputy Leader positions. Cabinet is then elected using a pooled voting system where anyone wishing to stand can put their names forward and the top six

The council’s Leader and Deuputy Leader are:

  • Cllr Muhammed Butt – Leader of the Council
  • Cllr Margaret McLennan – Deputy Leader of the Council

Cabinet is then elected using a pooled voting system where anyone wishing to stand can put their names forward and the top six are then chosen to be put forward on to the Cabinet. The Leader then appoints Cabinet Members to Portfolio positions. The Cabinet Members and their portfolio positions are:

  • Cllr Krupesh Hirani –  Community Wellbeing
  • Cllr Harbi Farah – Housing
  • Cllr Roxanne Mashari – Regeneration, Growth, Employment and Skills
  • Cllr Michael Pavey –  Stronger Communities
  • Cllr Eleanor Southwood –  Environment
  • Cllr Wilhelmina Mitchell Murray – Children and Young People

Now that the AGM vote is over and positions are confirmed, we are all looking forward to working together and Leading in our respective areas.

I will be covering Adult Social Care and Public Health as I was before, but in addition I will now also be responsible for Sports and Leisure, which I will be developing going forward using the Council’s Public Health remit. I will also now be chairing the Health and Wellbeing Board – previously Chaired by the Leader of Brent Council Muhammed Butt.

New Service Delivery Model for Citizens Advice Brent

Citizens Advice Brent have a new Service Delivery Model. For information, they have produced this very useful document LINK

The new model aims to:

  • Increase the numbers of people Citizens Advice Brent are able to help on a daily basis.
  • Improve the quality and efficiency  of each of  their clients’ contact journey with the service.
  • Increasing the number of  locations where the services can be accessed, including Brent Civic Centre
  • Introducing more channels of accessibility to get help.
  • Abolishing the infamous queues.