I am pleased to announce that Mike Freer, Leader of Barnet Council has won an Award. What's even stranger, you may think I will be presenting him this award in the company of our Worshipful Mayor, the Highly Worshipful Brian Coleman (Freer & Coleman are picture - Right). Mr Freer has won an award for his Leader Listens blog, which has been chosen as the "Best Local Government Blog" by the association of London Boroughs. I will be standing up to make a speech congratulating Mr Freer on his fine efforts.
Ok, I'll let you in on a secret. The above is only true in my head. When I got in at 3am after one of the most stressful days of my life, I thought I'd have a cheese sandwich, check my emails and have a cup of tea and my hundredth cigarette of the evening (I don't normally smoke). As I pondered a truly awful day, I then saw that Mike Freer had posted a new blog, justifying his truly horrible policy. I guzzled down my sandwich and then trudged off to bed. As I dozed off, I thought "Oh well, nothing else can go wrong". As I tossed and turned, I started having this awful nightmare. I was at Hendon Town hall. I had to present Mike Freer with an award. Brian Coleman was there in his full bling. They'd written a speech for me, praising Freer for being a great leader. You may think to yourself, why would Rog T ever do such a thing. Well in my nightmare scenario, they'd told me that my kids would be chucked out of their Barnet Schools if I didn't. A faceless Tory had informed me "We are in charge, we can do whatever we want".
Then I woke up. I was seething with anger. Then I realised that it was all a horrible figment of my imagination. Then I thought a bit more about it. If you look at the effects of the sheltered housing policy and realised that they really are a callous bunch. The policy is scaring old and vulnerable people just as badly as a threat to my kids to throw them out of school would scare me. They are as impotent in the face of this as I was in my dream.
There is a cabinet Meeting at Barnet on the 6th July. I sent Nick Musgrove at Barnet Council this question, which Mike Freer will be answering. The person you send these questions to is Nick Musgrove, who is the Council Officer responsible. I know Nick Musgrove, like me he's a good Catholic boy and goes to the same mass as me. I feel really sorry for the people who have to implement these awful policies. Why don't you come along and see what Mike Freer has to say. Here's my question :-
Q: During the cabinet debate at the previous cabinet meeting, the council were keen to represent the changes to warden services as an improvement. As such please can the council clarify the followin points :-
1. How many wardens are currently employed and how many will be employed under the new scheme.
2. How many visits per day do existing wardens make and how many will wardens make under the new scheme
3. What is the average duration of a warden visit currently and what is the expected duration under the new scheme.
4. What is the expected travelling time per day for wardens under the new scheme
5. Will wardens under the new scheme be renumerated at the same rate as under the existing scheme.
6. What provision has been made for disruption to warden visits by road congestion or weather
7. Will wardens be able to claim overtime when delayed by congestion or weather under the new scheme
8. How much does the council anticipate for increased overtime claims by travellin wardens
9. How many Barnet residents are currently serviced under the existing scheme and how many more will be serviced under the new scheme
10. What provision has been made for the cutover to allay the fears of residents
11. Has a full risk assessment been made for all chanes
12. How many residents will be made more vulnerable as a result of changes.
13. What provision has the council made for fighting legal claims made as a result of these changes.