BEG­GAR OFF

The Tribune (NZ) - - VIEWS -

There are also many buskers per­form­ing on the street who want my money

In each of th­ese sce­nar­ios I have to make a free de­ci­sion whether to give or not give money. Why then can’t the same free de­ci­sion mak­ing process be ap­plied to our ex­pe­ri­ence with beg­gars?

Any beg­gar that acts ag­gres­sively or sim­ply de­mands our money should be dealt with through the many means avail­able to us. Our so­ci­ety has laws in place to cover this.

So why are our mayor and some coun­cil­lors push­ing for yet an­other by­law to be added so beg­gars can be dragged off the streets just for sim­ply sit­ting on a pave­ment with a cap be­side them ask­ing for money?

Oh that’s right; this is lo­cal body elec­tion year. So let’s get stuck into the vul­ner­a­ble peo­ple with ad­dic­tion prob­lems and men­tal health is­sues.

So what if rais­ing this is­sue only makes their lives much more dif­fi­cult. They can’t fight back but it sure is go­ing to bring out the di­vi­sive, judg­men­tal and ugly side of our so­ci­ety.

I want our city to be known for its hu­mane and car­ing cit­i­zens. Surely there are far more cre­ative so­lu­tions to this com­plex is­sue than just pass­ing an­other by­law to leg­is­late th­ese so called ‘nui­sances’, out of sight, out of mind, just to make some folk feel bet­ter and in turn garner votes in elec­tion year?

Dion Martin Palmer­ston North

SWIMMABLE RIVERS

P. Boyce (‘‘Wa­ter­ways should be swimmable’’, March 2) re­cy­cles the claim that the Manawatu is ‘‘the most pol­luted river in the Western world’’.

This is news to the hun­dreds of peo­ple who have swum on some days in Waitoe­toe Park (in­clud­ing my fam­ily) dur­ing this glo­ri­ous sum­mer. And that’s just one spot.

I hap­pily re­port no ad­verse health re­sults at all.

Steve Wrathall Palmer­ston North

PUB­LIC SPACE SUB­MIS­SIONS

Pub­lic spa­ces in cities don’t get to be beau­ti­ful by ac­ci­dent.

Cur­rently the de­ci­sions re­lat­ing to city en­trances, streetscapes, re­serves; rules re­lat­ing to trees, by the rivr, green spa­ces and the con­nec­tions be­tween them, come un­der sev­eral plans.

This frag­men­ta­tion is clumsy and out­dated.

Coun­cil is seek­ing help with form­ing a veg­e­ta­tion frame­work for the big pic­ture and fu­ture.

Such con­sid­er­a­tions as the need for shade and shel­ter, and plants that pros­per in our en­vi­ron­ment, need closer at­ten­tion.

Get­ting con­struc­tive feed­back is crit­i­cal for the prac­ti­cal and aes­thetic suc­cess of this im­por­tant process.

Check out the Draft Veg­e­ta­tion Frame­work for PN on the coun­cil’s web­site pncc.govt.nz. Coun­cil’s Michael Duin­dam will re­ceive oral sub­mis­sions and an­swer your ques­tions.

You can make sub­mis­sions by phone or email up un­til March 18.

Ste­wart Har­rex Palmer­ston North

VAN-DALISM

I was con­cerned about The Lady in the Van re­view [ ‘From grand dame to grub’, Tribune March 2] be­cause the re­viewer’s ig­no­rance about Alan Ben­nett does not make your pa­per look good.

Alan Ben­nett is a writer of ex­tremely high stand­ing, not just in the UK, but world­wide.

He ob­serves and writes about peo­ple and their lives good and bad, happy and sad, and just the nor­mal day-to-day events in life. That came through in the film. He al­ways has funny mo­ments, and Alan Ben­nett ‘fans’ know and ap­pre­ci­ate this.

Peter Lampp’s ig­no­rance shows in the state­ment ‘‘Parts of the story were un­true’’.

He en­tirely missed the point about there be­ing two brothers. If he’d watched and lis­tened prop­erly he would have heard that the one stay­ing at home was the writer and ob­server Alan Ben­nett, and the one go­ing out and about and deal­ing with ‘the lady in the van’ etc was the ac­tive Alan Ben­nett.

The dis­cus­sions be­tween them was like him think­ing about the sit­u­a­tions and al­most de­bat­ing with him­self about how to deal with things. I do hope that this sort of sloppy re­view­ing does not hap­pen again.

Jeanette Doull Palmer­ston North

LO­CAL BODY ELEC­TIONS

Last year the Na­tional Coun­cil of Women re­leased a pa­per called ‘‘En­abling Women’s Po­ten­tial the so­cial eco­nomic and eth­i­cal im­per­a­tive’.

One of the ar­eas where women are not equally rep­re­sented is in pub­lic life in­clud­ing lo­cal govern­ment.

Na­tional Coun­cil of Women Manawatu branch is or­gan­is­ing a train­ing ses­sion to as­sist women who plan to stand for elec­tion to lo­cal bod­ies later this year.

This free ses­sion will be held in the Mis­soula Room, City Coun­cil build­ing from 5.30 pm on Wed­nes­day March 16, 2016.

At the meet­ing the Re­turn­ing Of­fi­cer will out­line the le­gal re­quire­ments; rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the me­dia will talk about aspects of pub­lic­ity, while women who have been elected to of­fice in lo­cal bod­ies will talk about cam­paign strat­egy.

In­ter­ested women should con­tact the Na­tional Coun­cil of Women Manawatu branch at na­tion­al­coun­cilof­wom­en­manawatu@ya­hoo.co.nz or text 021 054 9270 to se­cure a place at this ses­sion

He­len Wong Na­tional Coun­cil of Women

Manawatu branch

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