Council Motions & Questions 9 Jul 2013



To be moved by Councillor Shabbir, Seconded by Councillor Collector

This Council notes:
1) The very real threat posed to the future of the National Media Museum as a result of the comprehensive spending review and comments made by the director of the Science Group of Museums
2) The reassurance both form Secretary of State Maria Miller and Culture Minister Ed Vaizey that closure of the National Media Museum had become politically impossible

This council congratulates:
1) Bradford’s MPs who came together in a united front in defence of the National Media Museum resulting in a large rally outside the museum, a private meeting with the minister and an adjournment debate
2) Bradford council in securing a united front of the three councils whose northern group of science museums faced a threat from the comprehensive spending review
3) The Telegraph and Argus for campaigning in defence of the museum
4) The very large number of people locally, nationally and internationally who made their feelings known to the government

This council notes further:
1) Closure of the National Media Museum would have been a disaster for any plans for the much needed regeneration of Bradford City Centre
2) The National Media Museum still faces big problems arising out of the likely cuts to its government funding and its previous decline in terms of footfall from more than a million visitors at the beginning of the millennium to just half a million in more recent years
3) The deplorable failure of the director of the Science Group of Museums to endorse the statements of the Secretary of State and the Culture Minister that the NMM will not close
4) The contradiction between Minister Ed Vaizey calling for financial support from Bradford council for the NMM whilst at the same time the government is imposing the severest spending cuts on the council

This Council believes;
1) Charging for entrance to the museum would be a disaster for the museum particularly as current use is so highly concentrated amongst lower income groups
2) Increasing footfall in the museum is vital to help in the regeneration of the city centre and its establishment as a cultural centre
3) Increased encouragement should be given to schools in Yorkshire and beyond to make use of the museum
4) Partnership with Bradford College and University should be established again to maximise the use of this potentially wonderful resource
5) Financial support for the museum needs to be sought from the government, corporate sponsors including media companies in particular and the National Lottery
6) The council must give whatever financial support it can alongside support being sought and given by these other sources
7) There must be a full debate within council over different ideas for taking the media museum forward

This Council welcomes the commitment of Minister Ed Vaizey and the head of the Science Group of Museums Ian Blatchford to include Bradford’s MPs and council in future discussions about how best to raise interest in and use of the museum in the future.


To be moved by Councillor Karmani , Seconded by Councillor Ahmed

This Council notes
1) that ATOS have been awarded a £400 million contract for administering work capability assessments
2) the report published by the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee (2013) on the Work Capability Assessment that has found that the work capability test is causing fear and distress, is not accurate enough and raises serious concerns about value for money.
3) the concerns of many disability rights organisations, campaigners, academics, healthcare professional and politicians from across the political spectrum who have stated that the WCAs are fundamentally flawed and should be scrapped and have variously described the process as dehumanising, stressful and humiliating.
4) the views of Greg Wood, a GP who worked at ATOS as a senior adviser on mental health issues, who has said claimants were not assessed in an “even-handed way”, that evidence for claims was never put forward by the company for doctors to use, and that medical staff were told to change reports if they were too favourable to claimants.
5) the discriminatory impact on people with Multiple Sclerosis which fluctuates on a daily basis and where those suffering from MS will currently be judged on whether they can undertake activities on the ‘majority of days’, or over 50% of the time.
6) the ruling of tribunal judges on 22/05/13 who ruled that the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) had breached its duties to make “reasonable adjustments” under the Equality Act to ensure that people with mental health problems are treated fairly by the system.

This Council supports:
1) the resolution passed by Amnesty International UK, at its AGM on 14th April 2013, on the human rights of sick and disabled people in the UK which calls for urgent action to halt the abrogation of the human rights of sick and disabled people by the Coalition government and its associated corporate contractors.
2) the condemnation of the Social Security (Personal Independence Payment) Regulations 2013 which provides for those disabled people who can reliably move up to 50 metres to be awarded only the lowest PIP mobility rate

This Council believes that ATOS is not fit for purpose and their ineptness has resulted in greater vulnerabilities, distress and hardship for disabled people and people with mental health problems that have resulted in a worsening of their health and well-being.This Council calls on Bradford’s MPs to demand the re-writing of mobility criteria for benefits and stricter and more robust contract compliance of ATOS and the use of sanctions in its
contract management.

This Council demands the government undertakes an urgent review of the way work capability assessments are being carried out in order to make the changes necessary to eliminate the injustices that are now being perpetrated.
This council resolves that:
1) the Council should liaise closely with local disability and mental health charities and groups to monitor the impact of the benefit changes on them
2) local administration should not place undue hardship, pressure and distress on people with disability and mental illness
3) the council ensures equality impact assessments are undertaken by those that have expertise in disability and mental health and that we invite feedback and consultation from disability and mental health groups from across the district

QUESTIONS (To be answered at council meeting)

Councillor Karmani : Every year, £22 million is spent on commissioned dental services to over 500,000 people in Bradford district. This commissioning is based on the 2006 Bradford and Airedale Primary Care Trust Dental commissioning Strategy; amongst the strategic objectives in the strategy was to focus on health inequalities and improving health, to talk to local Overview and Scrutiny Committees about how best savings should be reinvested and to focus around BME communities to minimise health inequalities. How sure can we be that these objectives have been met in 2013 given that dental practices in the city have been served with breach notices, and residents in the city area have been assessed as having poorer levels of oral health. Furthermore there is evidence that inner-city dental practices are not delivering their contracted unit dental activity and deliver poor quality services.

What measures have the Executive taken to ensure that the dental service commissioning process is transparent, accountable, is being monitored and scrutinised and the services that are commissioned are delivering quality dental services that meet the needs of local people, reduce inequalities in health and promote high levels of oral health?

Councillor Karmani: How many people are now out of unemployment as a result of the £7.7 million scheme to ‘Get Bradford working?’ Has there been any job creation so far?

Councillor Karmani: Can we have assurances that all possible measures have been put in place to protect vulnerable children and young people at risk of sexual exploitation and street grooming?

QUESTIONS (To be answered after council meeting)

Councillor Collector: What is happening with the Westfield development? Councillors were given assurance that there would be progress by the latter part of this year – does that mean something will happen by December 31st 2013?

Councillor Ahmed:  What action has been taken thus far following previous questions to this council about the lack of ethnic minority representation at senior levels within the council? Has there been any new EM recruitment?

Councillor Shabbir: When will Bradford Council take responsibility and  fight for the rights of residents living in the vicinity of the AWM site (Frizinghall and Bolton Woods), whose lives are being blighted by this ongoing debacle?

Councillor Shabbir: Can the Leader inform us of the measures Bradford Council is taking to ensure stricter enforcement on the use of quad bikes on our roads so as to prevent road traffic incidents of pedestrians and quad bike users?

Councillor Faisal Khan: What measures are being put in place to provide sufficient numbers of school places in areas of Bradford that are suffering from a severe shortage causing substantial distress and difficulties for many families trying to manage in difficult times, and overloading an appeals process that parents are statistically unlikely to be unsuccessful in?