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Recorder letters: Community project funding, Korean war cemetery, swim for charity and overseas nurse charge

PUBLISHED: 12:00 20 January 2019

Green Party MEP Jean Lambert wants reassurance on community funding post-Brexit

Green Party MEP Jean Lambert wants reassurance on community funding post-Brexit

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Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Vital community projects need Brexit protection

Jean Lambert MEP, London’s Green Party, writes:

Every year, the EU contributes just over £500 million to London’s communities and projects.

That’s more than £5bn over the course of a decade. This money goes into a range of social and research projects which are of incalculable value to our communities - such as Love London Working which helps unemployed people into work, Paddington Development Trust which promotes urban regeneration, and Inspiring Women which encourages women to establish and grow their own businesses.

The government promised to consult on a Shared Prosperity Fund by the end of 2018. This new fund would “use the structural money that comes back to the UK as a result of Brexit” to reduce inequalities and “deliver sustainable, inclusive growth”. Yet, as we hurtle into 2019 - with less than 80 days until Brexit - there is still no sign of this crucial consultation.

Vulnerable groups have learnt the hard way that our Tory government has little interest in protecting these types of important community projects. However, this delay is nothing short of gross neglect.

That’s why I’m calling for ministers to face up to reality and guarantee these important projects will be able to remain up and running - or it’s vulnerable Londoners who will pay the price.

Help us honour our war heroes

Brian Hough, 116 Fields Farm Road, Hyde, Cheshire, SK14 3NP, writes:

I am acting on behalf of the authorities at the United Nations Memorial Cemetery Busan South Korea , where over 800 British Servicemen are buried.

The authorities there wish to obtain photographs of those servicemen interred there, and, also of those who died but have no known grave (200+). Copies of the photographs will be placed in the man’s records and will also be displayed on the walls of the Cemetery Hall of Remembrance for all time.

The following names are just some of the young men from the Greater London area who gave their lives in Korea.

S/Lt James M Simonds (RN); Pte George E Turner; Sgt Kenneth D Eames; Pte Peter C Ressia; L/Cpl George Inns; Pte John M Morrison; Lt Anthony G Pack; Lt Geoffrey H Cooles (RN); Cpl Montague Ritterband; Pte Arthur J A Bullman; Pte William R Cole; Lt Brian Swinbanks.

Any family or friend who lost a loved one in the Korean War 1950-53, and wishes to take part can send the photograph to me at the above address. If you need more details you can phone me on 0161 368 5622 or 07467 037742 or email me at bhough116@gmail.com

Swim challenge in aid of charity

Andrea Baganz-Pritchard, fundraising manager/head at Diabetes UK, London, writes:

Diabetes UK is looking for people to take on the swimming challenge of the year, Swim22, between February 22 and May 22.

As a Swim22 challenger you’ll swim an incredible 22 miles – the equivalent of crossing the English Channel – in your local pool, while making a difference with each and every splash. You can take on the swim challenge alone or, better still, get family, friends and colleagues involved. You can even split the distance between a team to make it easier for everyone.

Swimming is a fantastic way to help you get fit and healthy, have fun and set yourself a challenge.

Someone is diagnosed with diabetes every two minutes. It is a serious condition where there is too much glucose in the blood because the body cannot use it properly. If not managed well, both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes can lead to devastating complications, including sight loss, amputation, kidney failure and stroke.

Every length you complete and every pound you raise will get us closer to our vision of a world where diabetes can do no harm.

To sign up, just visit diabetes.org.uk/swim22. There is no registration fee and no minimum sponsorship.

Overseas nurse charge is unfair

Jude Diggins, regional director, RCN (Royal College of Nursing) London, writes:

Charging overseas nursing staff - who pay tax and national insurance - to access the very health service they work in is hostile enough, but voting to double the charge is beyond cruel, mean-spirited and speaks to a government which looks increasingly inwards.

The doubled fee, which is now £400, may not be a grand sum for a government minister, but for overseas nursing staff with families, it is a cost they could do without, especially when trying to settle in a new country.

In London, 17 per cent of our nursing staff are from outside the EU. Without them, and their skills, the health service would grind to a halt and the capital’s communities would be far less rich.

The government’s rhetoric around valuing NHS staff means nothing without the action to back it up, and it means even less when the actions ministers prioritise are the ones which punish overseas NHS workers who choose to come and work in our health service.

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