Falklands : Motion for Adjournment Speech:The Hon Mrs Jan Cheek
Submitted by Falkland Islands News Network (Juanita Brock) 19.07.2011 (Article Archived on 02.08.2011)
Mr Speaker, Honourable members, I would like to join in the welcomes given to Commander British Forces.
LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY 14 JULY 2011
(Part 2: Motion for Adjournment Speeches)
Compiled by J. Brock (FINN)
The Hon Mrs Jan Cheek:
Mr Speaker, Honourable members, I would like to join in the welcomes given to Commander British Forces. Glad to see you back again and I hope you will enjoy your stay. And also welcome back on to the Assembly to Mike Summers. I am hoping that the fact that he’s now a politician again won’t preclude him in his involvement in the Overseas Games Association because I know some international associations ban politicians from their ranks. However, it shouldn’t affect the Overseas Games Association from here.
On the subject of the Games in general, and Island Games in particular, I think we were all tremendously impressed by the performance of all our competitors and enjoyed – those of us who were able to – watching them on the excellent coverage by FITV and those who heard some very excellent commentaries on the radio. Finally, on that I hope the injuries, particularly of the various footballers, are healing fast and that they are fit again to play again because I think actually they will do us proud.
Referring to one of the answers to questions regarding the inability to fill certain posts, a group of four of us spoke to some of the students who have just finished their GCSEs and I was rather saddened when we asked how many people were going for apprenticeships and only one hand went up. We are offering apprenticeships in all kinds of areas now and we’ve extended that to Agriculture as has been our wish for a long time. I do hope those apprenticeships will be taken up. But more importantly, I hope those apprenticeships will be of a standard that is respected and appreciated by employers.
It became evident in meetings of the Education Board early in this Assembly that both Government and the Private Sector employers had some reservations about the new apprenticeship schemes but I heard that’s been addressed now.
One of the other areas where employment is said to be difficult and interesting but the Honourable Roger Edwards was the one giving us this particular answer, because he was one of the two who out-voted me on EXCO when I pointed out that employing LSAs during term time only would not be an attractive proposition if you want the kind of skilled people who are needed to deal with Children with complex educational needs and, in some cases, difficult behaviours.
Before being elected and during the life of this Assembly, I have become aware of the increasing strength of feeling about the destruction of the character of what we call “Old Stanley” by over-development. Apart from over-crowding sites, and leaving little room for gardens for safe playing for children, it’s impinging on people’s privacy. Parking and access problems are exacerbated leading to despites. We have now gone a long way in keeping up with the demand for new building plots, yet it seems not a month goes by without some attempt to stretch the rules out of all proportion to the need. We constantly struggle on the planning committee when we find that people are renewing planning permission they were given two years ago for an unsuitable development. There is very little we can actually do about it as long as they renew it in time.
The real questions we need to ask ourselves are, firstly, is there any need for over-crowding when the one thing we have more than enough of is space? Secondly, what do we want our town to look like? And, finally, do we really want the unpleasant consequences and congestion we see elsewhere with the resulting effects on people’s quality of life.
Turning to international matters, I think we have been pleasantly surprised by the vehemence of the British Government’s responses to some of the nonsense emanating from Argentina. And despite a certain amount of scare mongering we heard during the recent by-election campaign, we have, in fact, received more robust public and practical support from the UK Government than I can recall for many years. And I think we should express our great appreciation for that.
We should also note the successful visits in Washington and Canada by FIG representatives after the UN Committee of 24. And my hearty congratulations go to Dick and Roger on that.
Finally, I note and agree with a lot of Gavin’s frustration. I said after my previous 8 years on the Assembly that I would probably die with the words “get on with it” engraved on my heart. I spoke earlier in this Assembly about the amount of bureaucracy which is now in place and I hope we can make a serious attempt to cut through some of it and get on with it.
I support the Motion.