Tube Strike hits London, but what is our Mayor doing about it?

Huge queues outside bus stops, lots of road traffic; both cars and bikes, and London losing out on £50 million today according to the Daily Mail.

So why the strike?

Well, the strikes are over 800 jobs that are proposed to be axed… yes 800!!!

An estimated 90% of stations affected by the staff reductions will be in outer London. The controversy is that the now Mayor Boris Johnson actively campaigned on a ticket to save jobs at ticket offices, quite deceivingly, as it was never Ken’s intention to leave stations that were under TfL control totally unmanned.

Ken Livingstone highlighted a campaign we championed in Brent in the Harrow Times to highlight the importance of staff at tube stations:

1996 stock used on Jubilee Line by London Unde...
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He said, “we had a huge campaign about four years ago because a banker was stabbed to death as he left Kensal Rise station, which was unmanned.

“I gave a commitment that all the stations that came under the control of TfL would have staff in them.

“Nobody wants to come out of the station at 11pm seeing that there’s no one on the platform and no one on the barrier.”

My electoral ward includes two major underground stations on the Jubilee Line (Neasden and Dollis Hill) and borders another (Willesden Green). Leaving these stations unmanned will be an invitation to criminals. Presence prevents crime.

So what has been the Mayor Boris Johnson’s approach?

In the lead up to the strikes, HE DIDN’T EVEN MET THE UNION LEADERS TO NEGOTIATE!!!!!

This is the most barmy part of it all. During the 2008 London Mayoral election campaign, Boris said that he would move to negotiate a no strike deal with the Unions. Yesterday, it emerged that in what is set to be a disruptive ordeal for many Londoners, that he hasn’t even intervened personally to try and strive for a resolution. All we’ve seen from him is some media interviews.

London needs a Mayor that’s about action in this strained economic climate. Not one that leaves the work to his officers. After all, the Mayor of London is a serious role, not a ceremonial one.

Harrow man remanded over Neasden stabbings

A Harrow man has been remanded in custody accused of stabbing three people in Neasden.

Asad Qamar, 23, appeared at Brent Magistrates Court yesterday charged with three counts of wounding with intent and two counts of possession of a knife.

He was remanded in custody until a hearing at Harrow Crown Court on Tuesday, March 23.

A 20-year-old man was left in a critical condition in hospital after he was knifed in Aboyne Road at around 8.40pm on Saturday, March 13.

Two days earlier, at around 6pm, a 13-year-old boy and a 54-year-old woman were both stabbed in the back in seperate attacks, in the area of Neasden Recreation Ground.

The boy and the woman were taken to hospital for treatment and have since been discharged, and Mr Qamar, of Falcon Way, Kenton, has been charged with all three attacks.

Source: Harrow Times

Original Article: LINK

Brent Council accused of intimidating Brent Youth Parliament members

I recenty spoke along with Transport Minister Sadiq Khan MP,  Islington South and Finsbury MP Emily Thornberry and my fellow young Brent Council Candidates Roxanne Mashari (Welsh Harp Ward) and Nadhim Ahmed (Dollis Hill Ward) at a Young People’s reception organised by Youth Opportunities and Youth Engagement Minister Dawn Butler MP.

It was amazing to meet so many young people involved positively in our communities. A few members of the Brent Youth Parliament were among the guests which has since caused local controversy. The Liberal Democrat and Conservative controlled Brent Council has since sent the Brent Youth Parliament members an intimidating letter saying:

“You will obviously need to give careful consideration as to whether you wish to align yourself with a particular person or group and what impact this may have on others’ perception of you as a Brent Youth Parliament member.

“If you do decide to participate in local politics, you will need to give consideration as to which person or group you are willing to be connected with and, any implications of this.”

Barry Gardiner MP, who represents Brent North in Parliament raised the issue in Parliament and was advised by Sir Alan Haselhurst to take the matter to the Speaker of the House of Commons. Harrow Times have reported in the story LINK.

I think it’s an absolute disgrace that young people are being discouraged from being involved in politics by being threatened and intimidated in this manner.

Brent Labour has led the way in youth representation and in this years’ local elections will be putting forward 5 candidates in their 20s.