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These are official documents that include details of deep cuts to police numbers published too late to be scrutinised by MPs.
• We have fewer police officers. A drop of 0.7% to 123,142 police officers across all ranks in England and Wales at the end of March this year. This is the lowest number at the end of a financial year since comparable records began in 1996.
• We have fewer soldiers. The number of full-time soldiers has fallen by 7,000 in the last three years. Across the Army, Air Force and the Navy there are currently 570 fewer service personnel than in June 2016.
• Britain has sold £3.3bn worth of arms to Saudi Arabia in the past two years alone, including licences for aircraft, drones, grenades, and missiles. The Foreign Office report said the UK is “deeply concerned about the application of the death penalty” in Saudi Arabia and restrictions on freedom of expression, as well as women’s rights.
• Decision to scrap the electrification of train lines, which had been heralded as a way of making the rail network faster, greener and cleaner, after massive budget overruns of billions of pounds. The pledge was made by David Cameron in 2012 but has proven to be a waste of time and money.
• A statement showing UK plans to opt into new Brussels regulations allowing for more cross-border police cooperation in cases where children are at risk of parental abduction.
• A report showing that schools and colleges do not currently have the capacity to teach all pupils maths until they are 18, with about a decade needed to expand capacity.
Ben, 13, has Cerebral Palsy and requires money to pay for his treatment but so far the Tories have ignored his pleas for help. This has forced Ben to rely on public donations.
He has again written to Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt hoping this time he will act.
Ben hopes to deliver his letter directly to Jeremy Hunt.
Dear Mr Hunt
My name is Ben Baddeley and I’ve written to you before and so has my Mum.
I have Cerebral Palsy and the physio treatment that is helping me to get better isn’t paid by the NHS so my Mum and Dad have to find the money to get me my treatment.
My Mum and Dad are trying to get the CCG to help with paying for it but no-one is paying attention. It is really difficult for my Mum and Dad to find the money because it’s really expensive and nearly two thousand pounds a month. My Dad is always working overtime and my Mum has to fund raise.
My Mum has written to the health department and they say there is nothing they can do to help me. When me and Mum wrote to you we got a reply from someone at the health department saying that you can’t help me either.
But I’m confused because you are the health secretary so why can’t you help me…
Any member of the public no matter where they live in the world can help Ben right now by giving a donation to help his treatment. If Ben does not receive this treatment he will need a wheelchair as his condition worsens. All Ben wants is to live a normal life.
“The Government is lying to the public”, he adds.
“Extra” officers on the streets were actually officers putting in 16-hour shifts or working on “rare leave days”.
Former Met Police chief Peter Kirkham has accused the government of “lying” about the number of armed officers on the streets, during an interview in the wake of the London terror attack.
“The Met is in crisis”
“We haven’t got enough cops to actually put people on the street, that’s the main problem really, the streets have been lost. And I would put it as strongly as that,” he said.
Statistics published by the Metropolitan Police show that:
- gun crime increased by more than two fifths (42 per cent) year-on-year with 2,544 offences recorded in 2016/17;
- knife crime jumped by almost a quarter (24 per cent), with more than 4,000 offences involving blades resulting in an injury;
- the total number of offences recorded by the force rose by nearly 4.6 per cent from 740,933 to 774,737;
- violence against the person crimes were up by 4.7 per cent while there were also increases in robberies (12 per cent), sex offences (9 per cent) and theft (7 per cent);
Theresa May was Home Secretary under Cameron and Osborne when she made drastic cuts to front line emergency services.
Accident and Emergency
Buried in the 84-page document, you’ll find a number of nasty surprises on the way from the Tories that you might not have spotted.
Here’s what you’ll find if you check the small print.
1. You’re going to need ID to vote
In a bid to combat in-person voter fraud the Tories are going to change the law so you have to take ID with you when you vote.
The problem is, there’s little evidence that in-person voter fraud actually happens.
Of 51.5 million votes cast in elections in 2015, there were 481 cases of alleged electoral fraud.
Of these, the vast majority were not voting offences. More than half were campaigning offences – such as complaints about candidates making false statements about opponents, expenses offences or issues to do with campaign posters or flyers.
Just 123 alleged cases related to voter fraud, with 26 cases of impersonating another voter, 27 cases of improper postal voting and 25 cases of ‘undue influence’ over a voter.
Of these 123, all but 22 were dismissed – mostly because it was clear no offence had been committed or due to lack of evidence.
Of the remaining 22 cases, six resulted in police cautions.
It’s a solution that doesn’t have a problem.
On the other hand, 3.5 million voters don’t have photo ID – and they tend to be women, people from ethnic minorities and young people.
2. The Vote Leave bus pledge is officially not happening
Before the referendum, Boris Johnson and Michael Gove toured the country in a big red bus, emblazoned on which was the claim: “We send the EU £350 million a week. Let’s fund our NHS instead”
Theresa May has other ideas.
Buried in the manifesto is a reference to a “Shared Prosperity Fund” which will “redistribute money coming back as we leave the EU to the four nations.”
So no, the NHS won’t be getting £350 million a week extra under the Tories.
3. They’ve left the door open to more welfare cuts
Note “..we will continue to strive for full employment.” shrugging their shoulders over those they’ve pushed to death (ref the statements from three separate coroners). If they get into power you can expect more Tory voters complaining when they fall ill. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
A subtle change in language in Theresa May’s manifesto, launched this morning, opens the door for more cuts to benefits for the sick, disabled and working poor.
Former Work and Pensions Secretary Stephen Crabb said in March 2016: “We have no further plans to make welfare savings”
And his replacement, Damian Green, said in February: “We are not going to have any new welfare cuts in this Parliament apart from those that have already been legislated for.”
But here’s what it says in today’s manifesto – buried on page 54
“We have no plans for further radical welfare reform in this parliament and will continue the roll-out of Universal Credit, to ensure that it always pays to be in work.”
See the difference?
4. Remember all those civil service jobs David Cameron moved to London? They’re moving out again
5. The Commitment to halve the disability employment gap has been scrapped
The 2015 manifesto promised to cut the difference in employment figures between disabled and non-disabled people in half.
That’s been replaced by a commitment to getting a million more disabled people into employment, which the Social Market Foundation say is “weaker”.
6. There might be a hard border with Northern Ireland after all
Theresa May has previously insisted there would be “no return to the hard borders of the past” between Northern Ireland and the Republic after Brexit .
But today’s document says they’re aiming for “as frictionless a border as possible.”
7. The Immigration health surcharge is going to TRIPLE
Migrant workers who use the NHS are currently charged £200. That’s going up to £600.
International students still get a discount, but their charges are tripling too, from £150 to £450.
8. They’re going to ‘modernise’ the voting system by making it less fair
The Tories love the First Past the Post (FPTP) system. It’s outdated, unfair and benefits them massively in elections.
So they’ve decided to ‘modernise’ the voting system by replacing the current Single Transferable Vote (STV) system used in mayoral and police and crime commissioner elections with FPTP.
Because voters can cast a ‘second choice’ vote in STV, it ensures vastly fewer votes are wasted. It also remove some of the advantages big parties get from FPTP. Which is why the Tories don’t like it.
Dump the Tories before they dump you!
Is this what Tory voters want?
Doctors are preparing to move abroad
Number of patients waiting to start treatment is increasing
GP vacancy rate is increasing as existing doctors leave the NHS
The chances of getting a hospital bed are decreasing
Nurses are leaving the NHS