Tory cuts to school budgets will see some schools in Walthamstow face a 20% reduction in their funding, meaning many will have to either make teachers redundant or cut back on classes and vital services for our young people. To give some sense of the scale of cuts involved, Frederik Bremer School alone will lose £800,000 over the next four years. Calculations done by our local Council show that schools here in Waltham Forest face real-terms budget cuts of £21m between 2016 and 2020 – based on increased costs of £17m from unfunded new cost pressures, such as the government’s apprenticeship levy in addition to about £4.3m from changes to the national funding formula for schools.
As the local MP I have been working with the Council to raise concerns with the Government about these plans, as well as my fellow Labour MPs - so was shocked that the Minister responded to us to suggest that if schools could not manage with such cuts they should simply renegotiate their photocopier contracts or energy bills. Such an attitude suggests the Ministers don't understand either how schools manage their funds or the impact of the cuts they are imposing on them- leading to likely devastating consequences for our local children. You can read more about this here from the Guardian newspaper- if I am re-elected as Walthamstow's MP in the election I will continue to fight for our schools to get the funding they need to be able to give every child in Walthamstow the best start in life.
Anger into Action: Tampon Tax Challenge and Four Ways You Can Make A Difference Today By Being a FAN
We realize the importance of our voices only when we are silenced
Our UK Government has today announced taxes paid by women for tampons will be used to fund anti-abortion organisations.
Turn your anger into action by joining with us to fight back through the Feminist Action Network.
FAN brings campaigners together in common cause to show the power of equality to change the lives of everyone for the better.
Here are five ways you can do that today:
- The UK Government has given £250,000 of public money to Life, the anti-abortion organization, from the so called tampon tax fund. If you believe this decision is wrong demand Ministers review this decision here.
- On Tuesday 18th April from 6 - 7.30pm we will be running a "Circular Firing Up Squad" in parliament. This is a free, non partisan women's leadership workshop open to any woman aged 16 or over to help inspire herself and others onto positions of power and influence in their own lives- to book your place at this event please email to RSVP.
- 70% of those claiming bereaved parents allowance are women- on the 6th April the Government is cutting this help and says this is because women now work. Help us challenge this decision by writing to your MP here to support grieving parents.
- Holler4 are organsing flashmob choirs across the country to support the #icantkeepquiet campaign following the women’s march. They’re holding a workshop on Saturday 8th April Sign up here to join one of these choirs.
- Horrified by recent court cases involving violence against women? A new consultation has started on the sentencing of intimidatory offences and domestic abuse. Have your say here now.
Please share this information and spread the word about how we can take action together to make a positive difference.
Any activists that would like to be part of our #FAN2017 network and receive updates on campaigns should email firstname.lastname@example.org with FAN2017 in the title.
Over 800* local residents have voted in the 2017 E17 Housing Awards to identify the good and bad in our local housing provision. At a ceremony on Saturday 25th March 2017 the results were announced - you can watch the event here.
As well as the results of the following votes, attendees heard about three local campaigns that are seeking help in the coming year- to support selfbuild in Walthamstow, to help the local homelessness nightshelter and to set up a landlord cooperative- and the success of the Butterfields campaign which was featured in the 2016 Housing Awards as well as from the local authority Councillors leading on housing in Walthamstow.
The results were as follows:
- The Best Social Housing Provider in Walthamstow 2017: Clarion Housing- nominated for their work supporting selfbuild in the community
- The Social Housing Provider with Most Room for Improvement in Walthamstow 2017: London & Quadrant - nominated for their repairs service.
- The Best Lettings Agency 2017: Central
- The Worst Lettings Agency 2017: Central
- The Most Shocking Behaviour by a Letting Agency 2017: Wonderlease - nominated for gazumping renters
- The Kindest Gesture by a Letting Agency 2017: East & Co for not charging fees to tenants
- The Best Estate Agency 2017: Central
- The Worst Estate Agency 2017: Central
- The Most Shocking Behaviour by an Estate Agency 2017: Douglas Allen- nominated for charging homebuyers a 'finders fee' or double charging
- The Kindest Gesture by an Estate Agency 2017: Stow Brothers- nominated for their sponsorship and support of community projects
- MPs Special Award 2017 : The Waltham Forest Private Letting Agency Facebook Group - nominated for their work supporting tenants in Walthamstow secure affordable housing
To support this campaign please help by sharing the results of this ballot to alert tenants, homebuyers and landlords as to the outcome of this poll to help them make informed choices about our local housing market.
*following verification processes to ensure only Walthamstow residents voted a total of 605 nominations were included in the final results.
Thank you to Nicola Tree for taking the following photos- all photos are credited to her.Read more Share
The cost of housing in Walthamstow is one of the biggest challenges facing local residents. Many find themselves unable to afford to live in our community, whether due to a shortage of properties, rising rents or increasing house prices. Without action, owning or renting an affordable home in our community will become a distant dream for too many – that’s why the Walthamstow Housing Campaign is helping local residents challenge the pressures increasing the costs of housing in our local community.
In Waltham Forest house prices have doubled over the last eight years, as people have been priced out of other parts of London and so turned their attention to outer London boroughs. The rental market has also seen a dramatic growth- 28% of the population of Walthamstow are privately renting and this is expected to increase in 2021 to be almost 40% of the local population. The shortages of social and affordable housing have fuelled speculation in both rents and house prices. So too, concerns about the quality of housing also continue to grow with many local residents being charged extortionate rents and fees for properties which require repairs to be habitable.
Residents individually can feel powerless to complain about these issues, for fear of being evicted or cut out of the market all together. By bringing residents, local campaigners and myself together, the Walthamstow housing Awards are shining a spotlight on the good and bad practice in the local housing market.
The survey will be open until Friday 17th March at 12pm and is open to all residents of Walthamstow.
The 2017 awards will be held on Saturday 25th March 2017 in Walthamstow at 1:30pm, if you would like to attend please email Pippa@workingforwalthamstow.org.uk.
The following is the transcript of the speech Stella Creasy made in parliament at the Second Reading of the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill on Wednesday 1st February 2017:
Let us make no mistake: we are leaving the EU. The referendum seven months ago settled that issue. Today’s vote is not about whether Members have a leave or remain constituency. This Bill is about green-lighting the Prime Minister in her approach to Brexit and to parliamentary scrutiny: a fast-tracked process devoid of any detail for triggering article 50 in March when key European allies will have elections distracting them; and the grudging promise of a White Paper tomorrow for a vote today to replace the blank paper we currently have.
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“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.”
In 2017 we want to ensure a strong voice for the power of equality to change the lives of everyone for the better. Our Feminist Action Network links campaigners around the world with activists here in Britain to do just that. Here are five ways in the coming weeks you can be part of this:Read more Share
For just £3 you could win a fabulous dinner with Stella Creasy and a surprise special guest in 2017...want to know who? then see below!
Book your Come Dine with MP ticket here
Walthamstow CLP is giving members of the Labour Party the chance to go out for a six course tasting menu dinner at a top London restaurant with a variety of special guests - All you have to do is buy a ticket and you’ll have a chance to win each month.
The winner of Walthamstow MP’s Stella Creasy’s festive greeting card has been announced as Priyanthan Navaratnam, Aged 8 of Class 4T of Whittingham Primary School in Walthamstow. Speaking about the competition Walthamstow MP Stella Creasy said:
"It gets harder and harder every year to judge the competition because the standard of entries is so high- there’s real artistic and creative talent here amongst our young children and it shows in the hundreds of entries I received! Priyanthan’s entry caught our eye because of his detailed picture of Walthamtow’s iconic dogtrack and imaginative depiction of Santa Claus flying over it. The card has now gone out to over 4,000 people both in our local community and nationally too –I’m looking forward to showing Priyanthan around parliament when he comes for his winner’s tea so he can meet first hand some of those who received it.
I also want to put on record my gratitude to the local businesses who kindly covered the full cost of producing this card and so helped make this ever popular competition for our local children possible- these were Bates of London, The Stow Brothers, Your Move, Rineys, Sodo Pizza and Capital and Regional who own the Selbourne Walk Mall. Congratulations to all who took part and I hope everyone in Walthamstow has a wonderful Christmas and New Year."
Ask Your MP to Help Put Consent on the Curriculum - Back the Safeguarding Amendment to Children and Social Work Bill
"We cannot say that we safeguard our children when we make sure that they are taught about composting but not consent"
Click here to watch full speech
Today I tabled legislation to make the provision of sex and relationship education part of safeguarding all children in schools in England.
Composting and recycling are part of our national curriculum. Consent and equality are not.
It’s time to change this- One in three young girls say they have been sexually harassed in school. There have been 5,500 assaults reported in schools in the last three years alone.
Sex and relationship education which covers consent, sexual violence, healthy relationships and domestic violence is a crucial part of preventing harm.
This proposal would ensure all pupils were given lessons not just in the biology of sex, but healthy relationships and consent. It would also require these lessons to be age appropriate, balanced, inclusive and religiously diverse - and give young people themselves the right to say if they want to take part in these sessions.
Teaching these skills isn't about replacing the role of families in guiding young people - it is about ensuring the peers of every child share the same respect for other students any parent would wish for their child.
So far twenty other MPs have backed this proposal- please help us win the case for this legislation by asking your MP to join us in supporting this measure.
Contact your MP by emailing them using this link - please ask them to add their name to the New Clause to the Children and Social Work Bill “Safeguarding: provision of personal, social and health education”.
Thank you for your support.
A brand new initiative, that promotes and encourages residents to ‘shop local’ this Christmas called #stowxmas, was launched on Friday 2nd December from the back of a local milkfloat.
Walthamstow has many wonderful traders and businesses selling gifts and treats- this map helps residents to find them and so promote our local economy.
This map was created in partnership with Parker Dairies, The Tramworks, East and Co. and Wood Street Walls and the We17 campaign group, which is seeking to support Walthamstow following the impact of the vote to leave the European Union. Campaigners were concerned that traders may be affected by the uncertain economic conditions, so want to encourage residents to buy their gifts this festive season locally and help support these local traders. The map features independent stores as varied as florists, coffee blenders, African inspired textiles, local honey, yoga studios, fishmongers and local brewers all reflect the diverse nature of the borough.
An online version of the #StowXmas map can be found at www.stowxmas.com and the map will be launched at 3pm on Saturday 3rd December at Today Bread, in Central Parade. The launch coincides with the national Small Business Saturday. Parker Dairies will also be distributing their map to customers via the milk floats and residents are encouraged to display the map in their windows too to show support for local businesses and traders this festive season.