Category: Policy

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Institutional-racism denier forms government race commission

Dawn-Maria France

Munira Mirza, who denies the existence of institutional racism, was picked as the government once again sidelines issues of race in the country. As Dawn-Maria France argues, “it seems unlikely that Munira Mirza’s commission, reporting to Johnson and overseen by Badenoch, will do more than kick the can down the road.”

Yorkshire brides become activists to save their wedding days

Javed Bashir

Brides in the market towns of Yorkshire have become activists to fight for the right to hold their wedding at their dream venue – an historic and culturally significant building dating back to c.1650 that is at risk of closure due to council cutbacks. Their stories are not only heart breaking, but are a response […]

Misleading statements from Conservatives about refugees and asylum seekers

Dr Stella Perrott

Following recent criticisms of Home Office refugee policies, particularly in respect of the small boat crossings of the Channel and the death of a Kurdish-Iranian family, a number of people have written to their MPs expressing concern. Some replies have already been received. The answers are broadly similar and conform to Home Office ‘lines to […]

Interview with: Councillor Andrew Cooper – Green candidate for West Yorkshire mayor

Alex Toal

The appearance of being ‘relatable’ has always been important in politics. The pub trip photo-op has become a staple of electoral campaigning, and candidates can be savaged for their apparent detachment from reality. Long after their disappearance from frontline politics, people still remember Ed Miliband as the sandwich-mangler, and Theresa May as the wheat-field sprinter. […]

Will climate migration pressure get governments to save the planet?

Beanna Olding

“By 2050 – if no action is taken – there will be more than 143 million internal climate migrants.” The World Bank’s Groundswell project has provided even more reasons to reduce your carbon footprint – as if there weren’t enough already. The impact of climate change on humans is an increasingly better known area of […]

Regional roundup: Friday 6 November

Alex Toal

Local leaders react to second lockdown On Thursday, the entirety of England entered national lockdown, with stay-at-home orders issued and non-essential businesses closed. As Yorkshire becomes the focal point of the second wave of Covid-19, hospitals have been struggling, with Doncaster public health director Dr Rupert Suckling announcing that the city had more hospitalised patients than […]

Are we witnessing the death of the events industry?

Robert Francis

Measures introduced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak, MP for Richmond, have until now prevented mass unemployment and kept many businesses afloat. However, not everyone is equal when it comes to a place in the lifeboat. Many self-employed, for example, have not been given a seat – as highlighted by the campaign group #ExcludedUK. And despite creating […]

Failure to learn from Grenfell will cost lives

Andy Brown

One of the reasons that cynicism has entered politics quite so strongly in recent years is the way most politicians respond to serious problems. The pattern is all too familiar. A horrible disaster strikes. It is announced that an inquiry will be organised to get to the bottom of the issues and make sure it […]

Should we use criminal law to get public compliance with covid?

Amy Ramswell

With another lockdown in England starting on Thursday, covid is well and truly back with a bang. It is sweeping the streets, crashing the Test and Trace system and even being carried into parliament by MP Margaret Ferrier. A virus doesn’t spread itself, as the government has repeatedly exclaimed when lambasting young people for house […]

Yorkshire isn’t ready for two national emergencies at once

Jane Thomas

The one thing this pandemic has shown us is how much we rely on our emergency services – not just the NHS, but all those who are keeping us safe during these Covid times. So, news that one of our key emergency services – the fire service – has shed more than a thousand workers […]

Algorithms for housing: a formula for failure?

Andy Brown

Algorithms don’t have a great reputation after the exams fiasco of the summer. So, you might think that the UK government would have become just a touch nervous about relying on them quite so naively in the future. In a reasonable world, ministers might have learned that that computer programmers can’t write mathematical formulae that […]

Cliff edges and safety nets: we need a roadmap out of poverty

Jane Thomas

In less than a week, the government’s Job Retention Scheme will end, putting as many as five million people’s jobs at risk, according to Sheffield’s Festival of Debate organisers. The Cliff Edges and Safety Nets online debate, organised for 29 October, will bring together Citizens Advice Sheffield and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation to discuss the […]

UK Bishops defend the rule of law

Andrew Milroy

The headline “Top UK bishops slam ‘disastrous’ bill” reverberated around the world, making news in the media across the United States and Canada, in India, China, Australia even Korea and Japan. It was global news because the foundation of democracy, the rule of law, was threatened. Britain was proposing to fatally compromise her integrity and reputation […]

Regional round-up: Friday 23 October

Alex Toal

Tiers for fears This week was marked by an escalation in coronavirus measures as South Yorkshire was put into Tier 3, starting from Saturday. As cases rise across the region, York public health director Sharon Stolz had to deny that any move to Tier 3 was imminent in the city, and talks continue between West […]

Harsher sentencing proposals are likely to increase serious crime

Dr Stella Perrott

On 16 September, the government announced tougher sentencing measures for serious and violent offenders in the white paper, A smarter Approach to Sentencing, saying it will offer greater protection to the public and time served in custody would better reflect the seriousness of the offence. The proposals are in response to the Conservative’s manifesto commitment […]

Protecting the right to choose: the feminists of York

Alex Toal

Reproductive rights have long been settled in Britain. Some 86 percent of the population believe that a woman should have a right to an abortion, and only 24 percent are in favour of making the time limit to decide to terminate a pregnancy shorter. Yet recently this has been under attack in the city of […]

Our future: transport

Hugh Goulbourne

Hugh Goulbourne is seeking nomination to be the Labour Party’s candidate for the West Yorkshire mayoral election. West Yorkshire cannot wait for Westminster any longer; our mayor must do things differently! As the government dithers and delays further on plans to extend HS2 to Leeds, it is critical that leaders in Yorkshire are not distracted […]

Music, Covid and Brexit: can the show go on?

Alex Toal

Imagine an industry that contributed more than three times as much to the UK economy as steel and employed almost 200,000 people. Imagine an export that is beloved across the globe, and which helped sustain many through lockdown. Now imagine it being shut down for the entirety of the pandemic, even as most of the […]

The scale of our national agony in 2020 needs a radical vision

John Harris

On 1 October, the UK2070 Commission published its latest report, ‘Go Big Go Local; a new deal for levelling up the UK’. We can compare the ambitions of this report with the speech of the prime minister at the virtual Conservative Party conference and whether the government shares to any extent at all the idea […]

Our food from our farms

Salli Martlew

James sits on my doorstep and has a cuppa and a chat when he delivers my supplies from Blacker Hall Farm. He’s good company as we talk through how the increased trade is affecting his work life and the farm shop. He reminds me that the vast majority of their vegetables, fruit, dairy and meat […]

‘Spy Cop’ laws and the disproportionate surveillance of left-wing groups

Jacob Taylor
black binocular on round device

On Monday, the second reading of the covert human intelligence sources (criminal conduct) bill passed in the commons. The bill, if it becomes law, would provide extra legal protection for agents of the state who commit crimes whilst undercover. Organisations such as Amnesty International and the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign have expressed their concerns […]

International legal body expresses deep concern at actions of UK government

Andrew Milroy

The International Bar Association (IBA) is a worldwide body, founded in 1947. It is the global voice of the legal profession. Bar Associations of lawyers from across the world are members. The IBA investigates national issues of distortion and miscarriage of justice. Respect for the law is a world concern. It was logical therefore that […]

Is there just a hint of Apartheid in Shipley?

John Cole

Editor’s note: the original version of this article stated that Philip Davies MP helped his colleague Christopher Chope filibuster the upskirting bill. This was incorrect and Davies in fact supported the bill. We apologise for any upset this might have caused and have amended the article to reflect his record more closely. In my life […]

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