Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

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Children paying price of cuts

G. LIDDLE (Letters, October 15) reckoned I never answered his previous question on how the city had benefited from 13 years of a Labour government. If he had concentrated less on his criticism of Sunderland and more on the contents of my correspondence, he may have noticed that I told him of many ways Labour had helped the local economy with extra cash.

This is in contrast to Mr Liddle’s Government who are crippling our economy by withdrawing millions of pounds of council funding. Mr Liddle remarked that not everyone got baby bonds. Funnily enough, they were only given to babies but not any more. Mr Liddle’s Government has robbed our new-born babies of baby bonds, maternity allowance, child tax credits and have frozen child benefit.

They are making innocent children pay for a deficit created by greedy bankers (not by Labour, Mr Liddle) whose reckless speculation brought this nation to its knees.

Unsurprisingly, Osborne has not frozen the earnings of the bankers. This year they shared a bonus of £7.5billion, and an investment banker’s salary doubled to £350,000.

Mr Liddle’s claim that his grandchildren would still be paying of the massive debt left by a Labour Government, instead of the banks, looks ridiculous in light of the facts. He should be more concerned about the Government he supports.

The Institute of Fiscal Studies has stated that Cameron’s welfare reforms are increasing child poverty yearly, and by 2020 it will have reached the total of 3.3million. Mr Liddle’s Tories are squeezing the living standard out of the sick, vulnerable and low earners, thereby making innocent victims of the children.

If we are all in this together, could Mr Liddle please tell me why the rich are getting richer while the poor get poorer?

W. Quinn, Duke Street, Millfield

Brain condition

THIS letter is aimed at raising awareness of a little-known neurological condition called cerebella ataxia.

It is an umbrella term for disorder of the nervous system.Symptoms include poor co-ordination of the arms and legs, and speech can also be affected, making it appear that a person with ataxia is drunk.

As the disorder progresses, walking may become difficult or even impossible, so that those affected may need a wheelchair.

It is important to note that there is a very large variation in the severity of the symptoms. Most of the cerebella ataxias are progressive, so will get worse with time. The speed at which ataxia progresses varies between different types of ataxias and between individuals, but is normally very slow and changes take place over many years.

It is estimated that over 10,000 people in the UK have this condition yet only seven per cent of the population have heard of it or know what it is.

If you or someone you know has CA, then a support group is there to help.

Ataxia UK is a registered national charity, more information can be found on their website www.ataxia.org.uk or telephone their helpline on 0845 644 0606.

I co-ordinate a local support group and would be extremely grateful for any help and please do not hesitate to contact me should you need more information.

In addition, we would also like to thank all those kind people who donated prizes for our stall at Seaham Carnival (particularly some businesses at Dalton Park) and those that bought tickets, thank you.

Phil Whitwell, Tintagel Drive, Seaham

Shock in Shields

CAN someone tell me what has happened to South Shields?

I visited recently for the first time in five years. What a shock I got! It’s like a ghost town. I counted 21 shops closed and boarded up.

I used to live in Shields and I loved the area, but now I don’t know what the council is doing.

But what really upset me was being approached by three children, begging. They spoke with East European accents. They were about 12. I just couldn’t believe that kids were allowed to beg. Where were their parents?

Scott Andrews, Wilkinson Terrace, Ryhope

Future of Libya

THE bloody execution of Colonel Gaddafi has been almost universally applauded.

The rebels are triumphant and seem to seriously believe that they overthrew Gaddafi. The real factor was the thousands of bombing raids carried out by ourselves and the French.

We can only hope that, whoever takes over in Libya, they prove worthy of the millions of pounds we have expended to replace Gaddafi.

B. McGill, South Bents