Tag Archives: Bristol Labour Party

LABOUR: DISABILITY DISCRIMINATION SHOCKER AS DEAF CANDIDATE DUMPED

Lee-Starr-Elliott-photo-Lee-Starr-Elliott-1200x675

Labour’s long-term candidate for Hengrove and Whitchurch Park has been ruthlessly dumped by the regional party bureaucrats for requesting support as a deaf person!

Here’s the comments posted to Facebook by the former candidate, Lee Starr-Elliot on this latest Labour row

*Statement to explain my no longer standing as your local candidate! *

I am taking the time to write this to explain why after 3 years I am no longer your candidate for Labour! After applying to be a candidate back in 2018, going through the candidate approval process including checks, a panel interview organised by the Bristol Labour Local Campaign Forum (LCF) and endorsement by Bristol Labour members, I was selected by my local ward as their candidate in 2019.

I was very proud of this as I had the best interests of the ward at heart and wanted to bring back a sense of strong local community and ownership to the area, something I’ve felt has been lacking as our current councillors seem to prefer to play party politics rather than focus on the needs of local people.

However, after the pandemic hit and the 2020 elections were delayed, I lost running mates one by one due to personal or work-related issues. In the meantime I continued to move forward, founding the BS14 Community Support Group on Facebook, which has brought together local people, allowing us to help and support each other directly or by sharing helpful information. It made me proud to see BS14 come together in this way and I thank everyone who made it a success and hope it continues.

Most people are aware that I am Deaf. In previous elections, central government has provided the Enable fund to support the access needs of disabled people so that they can run for public office. The government withdrew this for these elections. I sought support from my Regional office, in line with their duties under the Equality Act, for example to provide a BSL interpreter for local, regional and national events and online training. I’m sad to say my request was not even acknowledged.

This led me to filing an official complaint, which has yet to be resolved, despite having the made the complaint nearly 5 months ago! When I asked for assistance with phone banking I was fobbed off and told to get people to volunteer! This put me at a serious disadvantage as many other people across all parties were able to phonebank, leaving me as the only one unable to do so, as by this stage the other candidates had withdrawn.

As people may understand, I became increasingly frustrated and angry that I was being discriminated this way and I took to social media to call out bad practices and condemn the leadership for failures in supporting members. Instead, they were busy suspending members for supporting the local members’ right to debate and offer solidarity to the suspended previous leader of the party, Jeremy Corbyn!

While all this was happening, the regional office of the Labour Party was preventing constituency party groups from carrying out democratically agreed actions such as supporting food banks with financial donations from the members’ fund. Regional staff even went as far as suspending the AGM of a nearby constituency party and announcing they would run it months later – allowing them time to install their preferred members into positions. When they eventually ran the AGM it was shambolic and clearly designed to exclude members’ voices!

Similarly, the selection of the West of England Mayoral candidate was decided undemocratically, with the previous candidate Lesley Mansell and other left-leaning candidates excluded from the membership ballot by a regional panel. This has clearly backfired on the local party, as members are not happy to campaign for someone who while he was an MP voted for the Iraq War and is clearly against helping people such as students!!

It seems that by standing up for myself against discrimination and calling out where the party is failing nationally and regionally and when it is bullying the membership, this has resulted in the Labour Party refusing to endorse me at the local elections on May 6th. I would like to acknowledge the support of a small group of candidates and supporters who are leading the fight both locally and nationally against actions of politicians from all parties in order to make Bristol and the country better.

I wouldn’t have got this far without them, as the discrimination I’ve faced as a candidate and a person within politics is emotionally breaking. However, I will continue to be as loud as possible and call out actions of councillors and MPs who are not transparent and are not working for the people who voted for them but are instead following the party line. I thank everyone who has supported me and were going to vote for me!

*Lee Starr-Elliott*

BRISTOL LABOUR PRE-ELECTION MELTDOWN IS ON!

LOckleaze councilliors and new candidates (2)
‘Disappeared’ Labour candidates

At the end of last week Labour Councillor for Avonmouth Jo “Hippy” Sergeant quit the Labour Party. Before running for the hills she fired off a letter revealing the Reverend and his council’s Labour Group as a misogynistic bullying hell.

Now, this week an entire ward committee has quit the party. Here’s what they say:

To members of Lockleaze Labour Party

We are writing to you to let you know that we, the committee of Lockleaze Labour Party, have taken the decision to resign. We feel that we have no other choice.

In October 2020, a meeting was to held to select two candidates to stand as councillors in elections to be held in May 2021 as both our longstanding councillors Gill Kirk and Estella Tincknell were retiring. The process was overseen and approved by the Bristol Labour Party Campaign Forum which was responsible for the selection of candidates.

There were six excellent local candidates. The two candidates selected by due process were Alfie Thomas and Anna Lart Greene (see attached photo). Both are in their twenties, committed to the local area and able to speak up for local people on Bristol City Council. However, our chosen candidates were blocked by the South West Labour Party Regional Director and no one from Regional Office has talked to us about reasons for doing so.

Instead, Regional Office took over the selection process. They have not met their timetable for the selection of candidates which means that we still do not have Labour Party candidates in place for May’s election, despite campaigning officially starting on March 15th. Therefore, our position as committee members is not tenable.

We regret the decision we have had to take but have been given no alternative.

Lockleaze Labour Party Committee,

Do Rees and his right wing regional office cronies think Bristolians will vote for any old crap put up by the disorganised bent shambles that now passes for our local Labour Party?

CITY LEAP SELL-OFF LATEST

Simple District Heat Layout

The ‘Permanent Energy Centre’ on Castle Park will eventually generate some of the energy for the wider ‘OLD MARKET HEAT NETWORK’. This is a plan to supply low or zero carbon heat to connected buildings around Old Market at a cost equivalent to, or lower than, mains gas. To this end the council has now agreed to spend £9.4MILLION (plus £8.8MILLION of government money) installing a heat network around the Old Market area.

However, rather than the people of Bristol and council tax payers DIRECTLY BENEFITING in lower bills from their PUBLIC INVESTMENT into CHEAP ENERGY, the council say, “these projects are important parts of the Bristol Heat Network system and will be important assets under the CITY LEAP INITIATIVE“.

In other words, once this network has been completed at PUBLIC EXPENSE, it will be FLOGGED to the private sector so that they can extract a PROFIT from the cheap, clean energy infrastructure we’ve paid for. A similar heat network at Redcliffe, directly serving SOCIAL HOUSING, has also been put up for sale to the private sector as part of the Reverend’s energy fire sale (surely the billion pound City LEAP Prospectus? Ed).

Why can’t these heating systems REMAIN IN PUBLIC HANDS to deliver any financial and social benefits directly to the Bristolians that paid for them? Why are they being SOLD, before they’re even built, to make PROFITS for a group of global shareholders? Why are Bristol Labour Party using public money to build assets that are already on the market to global corporations?

Who voted for this corporate scam?

LABOUR NEWS

The selection process for the Labour mayoral candidate in 2020 continues to be gripped by BUREAUCRATIC INERTIA. As nobody, it seems, in the entire Labour movement still has any idea how the trigger ballot process they’re proposing to use to decide if the Reverend runs again or not actually works or when it might take place.

However, we do now have some idea about the Labour-affiliated organisations who will DECIDE whether the Reverend Rees gets a free run at re-election next year or whether he will need to go through a proper and, likely, very tricky ONE MAN ONE VOTE selection process within his own party.

We’re reliably informed that 25 Labour WARD BRANCHES made up of members have a vote each in the trigger ballot; 15 SOCIALIST SOCIETIES have a vote and 77 TRADE UNION AFFILIATES have a vote. Members, many of whom oppose the Reverend, are therefore outgunned THREE TO ONE by the votes of faceless trade union bureaucrats. If this ballot ever happens, the result seems a foregone conclusion.

Meanwhile the Bristol Labour Party, encouraged by Momentum campaigners, has forged ahead with an “open” selection process for its candidates for councillor. Although all might not have gone quite to plan after a well-organised LGBT LOBBY helped out by right wing  DARREN “DIPSHIT” JONES SUPPORTERS in Bristol North West managed to get two female socialists and opponents of Rees’s Tory austerity agenda REMOVED from the councillor list for “transphobia”.

Naturally, the usual ragbag of Blairites, social climbers and former Lib Dems who tend to make up the majority of Labour’s council candidates have all been waved through for selection as candidates.

INDIE MP JONES AND THE LEAFLET OF DOOM

INDIE MP JONES

Labour Party members in Bristol North West are FURIOUS with a leaflet their moron MP, Darren “Dipshit” Jones, distributed in Henleaze and Westbury on Trym recently.

Apparently coming from “FRIENDS OF DARREN“, not the party that selected him, the leaflet ditched Labour’s usual red branding and logos for some fetching GREEN branding instead. Dipshit then informed readers he supported the so-called ‘People’s Vote’, a second referendum on Brexit, an, er, Lib Dem policy – and invited people to donate to his “INDEPENDENT ELECTION FUND“.

The leaflet went on to say, “For those of us who support Darren but don’t want to donate to the LABOUR PARTY, we can now donate to his Independent Re-election Fund. Donations will be held independently by Darren and all donations are welcome.”

These leaflets were targeted and distributed in Henleaze and Westbury-on-Trym. Apparently solely for the benefit of the local Waitrose crew as not a trace of these leaflets can be found in the WORKING CLASS AREAS of Dipshit’s patch such as Avonmouth, Southmead and Lockleaze.

What’s going on here then? Is this a middle class coup in Bristol North West? Members have been expelled from the Labour Party for far less …

 

CUT TODAY FOR LABOUR VICTORY TOMORROW

Some excellent sleuthing by Momentum in the lead up to the Reverend’s Tory cuts budget at the end of February UNCOVERED what appeared to be an extra £9million being hosed into the council’s cash reserves for NO APPARENT REASON.

This £9million was the difference between what the council’s published financial risk assessment said was NEEDED in cash reserves and the amount of cash actually being PUT IN THERE.

But lo and behold! Just the day before the council’s budget meeting, a new risk assessment suddenly emerged, explaining the council actually needed a FURTHER £9million in cash reserves.

All very convenient, although the stench of the Reverend building a personal ELECTION WAR CHEST for 2020 at the expense of our public services now remains hanging heavily in the air.

Do look out for those Labour election treats, baubles and bribes in 2019 – 20 but try not to forget what they really cost us in terms of lost services and wrecked lives

HARTCLIFFE’S HOT AIR CENTRE

Anyone got any idea what’s happened to the HARTCLIFFE RECYCLING CENTRE, the state-of-the-art recycling facility for south Bristol that could be located on a 5-acre site on Hartcliffe Way?

Politicians of every shade of useless have PROMISED the facility for years now. While the hot air expended on this non-existent facility, if captured, could generate imaginary plans for the city for the next hundred years.

This recycling centre was originally touted by the Lib Dems’ Gary “Fuckbucket” Hopkins in 2010 when he was the cabinet member responsible for waste. However, the centre has subsequently been promoted by Labour, Tories and Greens, including the Reverend Rees who PROMISED to build the place by 2018 in his first speech to Bristol City Council in May 2016.

The Lib Dems even got as far as agreeing, at cabinet meeting on 4 July 2012, to build the centre and allocated £2million for the task. Alas, Mayor No-more Ferguson arrived in autumn 2012 and put the project “ON HOLD” citing government cuts. Although Ferguson subsequently found MILLIONS to splurge on European Green Capital eco-tainment for the wealthy, such as dumping a load of festering tugboats in Leigh Woods to “challenge us to think about issues surrounding climate change”.

The Reverend, having personally put the recycling centre back on the agenda in 2016, appears to have done NOTHING about it since and he’s now set to miss his own 2018 deadline for the opening of the centre. Will it ever happen?

Perhaps Bristol Waste Managing Director, Tracey Morgan, who seems to take all the decisions in Bristol these days, has decided she doesn’t want a recycling centre in Hartcliffe?

WOOLLEY WANKER AND THE FAKE NEWS FACTORY

The Reverend meets Woolley Wanker earlier this year. But no one knows who leaked that private Facebook post to Wanker.

As the Reverend heads towards the end of the second year of his car crash term in office, he’s increasingly resorting to calling in favours from friends to silence the mounting number of his critics, not least within his own party, by making WILD ACCUSATIONS of racism.

On 17 November community radio station, BCFM’s Politics Show ran an embarrassing item regarding the Reverend’s father and his antics in St Paul’s in the 1980s. The Politics Show had originally attempted to run the item on 10 November but BCFM bosses PULLED it after the Reverend got wind of it and directly intervened with the station’s bosses.

When the item ran the following week, the calm and collected Reverend told the show the item was “RACIST MUDSLINGING from a racist mudslinging show”. Although there was no discernible racism in the item beyond the fact that the main protagonists were black.

In the same week, on the 13 November, on a PRIVATE local Labour Party Facebook group, Mal Sainsbury,a female Labour activist, to mark the anniversary, posted a historical account of suffagette Theresa Garnett assaulting Winston Churchill in 1909 with a HORSEWHIP at Temple Meads Station .

Mal then invited readers to join her on a demo OPPOSING CUTS at the Council House with the ill-advised rejoinder, “Please join us and bring your metaphorical horsewhip to lick our Mayor and Councillors into shape!”

The Reverend – not unreasonably considering he’s a black man and the role of the horsewhip in slavery – took OFFENCE at this remark and objected in the comments to the post. It was then agreed that the Reverend and the activist would resolve the issue, which had obvious hallmarks of a CLUMSY ERROR rather than RAMPANT HATE SPEECH, privately.

So far, so reasonable. However, fast forward a week and a FAKE NEWS article mysteriously appears on the national Operation Black Vote website under the byline of its boss, Simon Woolley “Wanker”, and headlined, “Labour party must expel Bristol’s racist members”. Coincidentally, Woolley Wanker was a MENTOR to the Reverend at the start of his political career and regularly writes puff pieces about the Reverend on his tedious Blairite website.

A cursory reading of Wanker’s article revealed that he’d been LEAKED some partial, selected and incomplete quotes from the Mal’s private Facebook post. Woolley therefore failed to mention the suffragette context in which her horsewhipping quote appeared.

However, despite only having been SPOONFED a couple of incomplete and conveniently incendiary lines from a private post devoid of all context, this didn’t stop batshit crazy Woolley Wanker calling on Labour Party bosses to “purge the party of its racists”, smearing an individual as well a section of Bristol’s Labour Party opposing Rees’s Tory cuts agenda in Bristol.

Woolley Wanker’s rant continued, “As a matter of urgency Labour party head office must SUSPEND its racist members in Bristol until a investigation is undertaken, and SANCTION those who have supported such appalling rhetoric.”

So not only should an activist who happens to vigorously oppose the Reverend’s shite politics be thrown out of the Labour Party over a poor choice of metaphor but any member who in any way defended her against OBV’s scurrilous FAKE NEWS accusations should also be thrown out as a racist too!

A social media storm naturally followed, stirred up by supporters of the Reverend and Woolley Wanker and with Mal at the centre being subjected to HARSH public accusations of being a racist on the basis of Wanker’s fake news. Mischievious Labour right-wingers piled in too, using the opportunity to attempt to smear Corbynites and anti-cuts activists in the local Labour Party with racism.

Even Alex “Half Baked” Raikes, queen of the local race relations scene and boss of publicly funded SARI, paid by us to deal with SERIOUS RACIST INCIDENTS, waded in to this overblown internal party row. Urging people to complain to the local Labour Party, “the more who write. The better. I’m planning some work with them due to this institutional racism and race hate speech. It’s so cancerous,” she thundered. Apparently perfectly happy to use public money and resources on any old fake news bullshit she discovers on Facebook to assist her friend, the Reverend.

We predict a lot more fake news bullshit as the 2020 mayoral election approaches. Be sure to keep an eye out for any RACIST WITCHHUNTS aimed at anti-cuts activists and Corbyn supporters in the local Labour Party as the Reverend attempts to get reselected in 2019 to run again for mayor in 2020 to deliver another four years of crappy Tory austerity.

Let us know if you spot any fake racism stories.

AUDIT’S IDLE HANDS STILL ON THE PAYROLL

Bristol City Council’s Audit Committee continues to impress. The committee, that’s supposed to oversee sound finance and good governance at our council, releases its annual report to councillors today for the year the Bundred Report into the council’s latest FINANCIAL SHAMBLES was published.

Among a host of serious management misconduct at Bristol City Council, Bundred’s report detailed how the Audit Committee had been thoroughly MISLED by its own Chief Internal Auditors and senior bosses about their ‘savings programme’ for 2013 – 16. Sometimes through the use of straightforward LIES to the committee and sometimes through the use of “summary reports’ that conveniently LEFT OUT any bad news or actual facts.

This resulted in councillors setting an UNLAWFUL BUDGET for 2015 – 16 that proposed the council spend £30million more than they were legally permitted. So there’s lots to tell councillors and the public in this annual report then?

Or maybe not? As the latest Labour Party mug flailing around totally out-of-his-depth as the Audit Committee Chair, Olly “Meadiocre’ Mead, has delivered a short five page report of remarkable blandness and few recommendations. Indeed, it’s such a load of shite it could only have been written for him by his BENT Internal Audit Service.

Summing up a year of revelations of outright financial CRIMINALITY from his senior staff and auditors and financial ARMAGEDDON for the rest of us, Mediaocre felt his committee needed to focus on just three problems: ‘Maintaining an apolitical/independent approach to meeting agendas and items thereon’; ‘providing robust challenge to determine the effectiveness of Council’s governance  framework’; ‘ensuring  focused meetings to maximise the Committee impact’.

If anyone can find the part of the Bundred Report criticising ‘politicised’ Audit Committee meetings and a lack of focus at their meetings – do let us know. Otherwise just assume this is a load of wind and irrelevant bollocks from a CRIMINALLY NEGLIGENT Internal Audit Service trying to cover their tracks by, er, misleading councillors (all over again).

Nothing sums up the misleading nature of this report more than the fact that NOWHERE does it mention the pretty important news that the council has appointed a new private sector Interim Chief Internal Auditor – Jonathan Idle of JR Idle Audit Services Ltd – no doubt for the standard annual six figure wedge. The appointment of this new Chief Internal Auditor hasn’t been formally announced to councillors anywhere else either.

Naturally, in order to waste even more of our money, which the Reverend Rees insists is in short supply, they’ve also KEPT their job share pair of USELESS and CORRUPT existing Chief Internal Auditors Melanie “Joe” Henchy-McCarthy and Alison “Mullet” Mullis in post. Although they’re now rebranded as just ‘Head of Internal Audit’ while being paid the same money.

In other words, the council’s response to the TOTAL FAILURE of their Audit Committee, Internal Audit and Chief Internal Auditors is to spend over £100k a year more of our money on a private sector consultant to do the jobs of pair of useless failures – who should be SACKED – who are still raking in excessive salaries they don’t deserve.

Also, NOWHERE in Mediocre’s report, is it mentioned that the Audit Committee has, for the last five years, received report after report from McCarthy and Mullet assuring councillors that finance management and risk at the council has been a story of CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT.

Until – that is – the Bundred Report appeared last year. Now we’re told by Chief Exec Big Wedge, in a separate finance report to Cabinet in May, that “the required Internal Audit Plan is not deliverable within existing resources” because of the “scale of finance improvements required”. Why is this serious AUDIT FAILURE and five year tissue of OUTRIGHT LIES from Internal Auditors not mentioned by Mediocre?

It’s also worth noting that the two ‘independent’ members of the Audit Committee –  Brenda “Wise Monkey” McClennan and Ken “Fool” Guy – who mysteriously noticed NOTHING amiss as various financial scandals engulfed the council during their extended eight year tenures  – have finally been let go.

Although – as yet – no replacements have been secured. Perhaps because if a normal member of the public sat on this committee listening to the bollocks spouted by the unholy alliance of city council senior bosses and their PATSY AUDITORS they might start asking difficult questions?

What a shambles.