Parliamentary Labour Party: respect your member mandate and support Jeremy Corbyn
Last year Jeremy Corbyn achieved a historic victory and became leader of the Labour party with a huge mandate. His leadership returned people who had been disillusioned for years to the party and inspired a generation of new activists. The EU referendum was a vote on participation in the EU. Huge numbers of people voted in a way which showed disaffection with the establishment. We cannot engage with these voters by competing on right wing values with UKIP and the Conservative party: the last UK election has shown this. We can only win through offering hope and an altetnative based on our values of lifting people up not setting them against each other. We call on you to respect the mandate of the membership and support our democratically elected leader.
Keep all current Further Education provision in the College Area Reviews
Petitioning: the Department for Business Innovation and Skills, UK government. Further Education plays a vital role in making society more skilled and more equal. 3 million people take part in FE each year. For every £1 of public money spent on FE, society benefits by £1.25. FE provides access to education for those with the most barriers - from poverty to motherhood to mental health issues - and delivers the diverse skills we need for an educated, functioning society. 61% of FE students are women and 15% are from ethnic minorities. FE has had a 35% cut to funding between 2010 and 2015, with 24% cut to adult education alone last year, the removal of EMA, and the introduction of fees and loans for many 24+ learners. Since September, FE has been undergoing regional Area Reviews, with the aim of creating fewer, more resilient colleges. Unions, students, college leaders, parents and MPs all share concerns that these area reviews will mean mergers, and ultimately, loss of provision. In December the cross party Public Accounts Committee produced a report on FE finance. The report was highly sceptical of the FE review process in the report on FE finance published in December 2016, stating that 'haphazard' area reviews are not a 'fix-all' solution for the further education sector, and calling on the government to do more to address risk in colleges and ensure stable funding for the sector. As lecturers, students, support staff, parents, college leaders and concerned members of the communities FE plays a vital role in educating, we call on BIS to guarantee: 1) To guarantee no further cuts to provision in the Area Review 2) To protect access to education by keeping all college campuses open 3) To guarantee staff workload is manageable by ensuring no deterioration of existing terms and conditions or redundancies as a result of the review.
.@TheSunNewspaper: Correct the sensationalism in your mental illness story and donate the profits from it
This week Sun Newspaper front page carried the headline: 1200 killed by mental patients. This was a dangerously selective way to lead on the research covered, reinforcing the public perception of the mentally ill as a risk to society. I work as a Psychology teacher, in particular working to develop understanding of mental health issues. I also have a history of long term mental illness in my family. I was therefore horrified to see that the Sun were misrepresenting complex research in such a harmful way, which is why I want to encourage others in responding to these misrepresentations. In reality people with mental illnesses are at greater risk of many forms of violence and assault from general society than those without, as well as having a long history of experiencing abusive treatment from the state. By focusing on stats relating to acts of violence carried out by the mentally ill the Sun Newspaper are increasing the risk to patients by dehumanising and demonising them. The SPJ code of ethics states that Journalists should: "Make certain that headlines, news teases and promotional material, photos, video, audio, graphics, sound bites and quotations do not misrepresent. They should not oversimplify or highlight incidents out of context. and ..treat sources, subjects and colleagues as human beings deserving of respect." The Sun need to review the processes by which editorial decisions are taken about this to include a recognition of their responsibility as a big media player towards protecting the safety of the mentally ill. We are calling on them to 1) Recognise that they have acted unethically in misrepresenting information about the mentally ill in this harmful way, and to print a full correction to this effect. 2) Make a donation to mental health charities to cover any profit made from this story and to apologise to those misrepresented