Saturday, 7 July 2012

Barnet Alliance for Public Services - One Barnet Conference

Today, the Barnet Alliance for Public Services staged a conference on the subject of One Barnet. There were excellent presentations from Andy Mudd of APSE and Professor Dexter Whitfield on the issues with outsourcing. The highlight was the presentation by Barnet blogger Mr Reasonable. It was an absolute crying shame that no Barnet Conservative Councillors turned up for the conference. Over 100 people attended, which is truly amazing. A year ago a crowd of 25 for such an event would have been seen as an achievement. We had questions from a whole host of residents, including a Rabbi who sought to get the local faith communities engaged.

One speaker referred to the Barnet bloggers as local heroes. I don't agree with the description. We take few risks and on the subject of One Barnet simply bother to read the information which our elected (and paid) councillors can't be bothered to address. The people on the hard end of the cuts such as John Sullivan and Linda Edwards (both guest bloggers on this site) are heroes, they take risks and they are prepared to stand up and fight with the council. Perhaps the biggest hero is Helen Michael, who also gave a short speech. Helen was interviewed this week by Scotland Yard, who are investigating a complaint from Barnet Council about her campaign against parking charges.

We also had addresses from trades unionists from Aberdeen and Edinburgh. I am truly proud of the Barnet Community for the way we have come together over the last four years since I started blogging. This was yet another highlight. I just wish that more of our elected representatives could be bothered to make the effort to attend and meet the committed people who care about their borough.

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