Why ig­no­rance is not bliss

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - OPINION -

IT IS Mrs Rad­ford’s “ig­no­rance is bliss” view of sex ed­u­ca­tion that is pre­cisely why the cur­rent sit­u­a­tion of teenage preg­nan­cies, STIs etc has arisen and needs to be tack­led ur­gently (Let­ters, May 3). The ex­cel­lent KCC re­port, pro­duced and backed fully by the cross-party com­mit­tee led by Cllrs Cribben and Tolputt, is a very wel­come step to­wards this. Even with suf­fi­cient ben­e­fits and hous­ing, young­sters would still re­quire ac­cu­rate in­for­ma­tion on the sub­ject to counter the play­ground gos­sip and mis­in­for­ma­tion that leads to the prob­lems we cur­rently see. It also needs to be started in pri­mary school as stud­ies from other lo­cal au­thor­i­ties and Europe clearly show much more favourable out­comes for chil­dren when they reach teenage, and in­deed adult­hood, from be­ing taught the sub­ject openly and sim­ply from early on. Some Kent schools have al­ready em­barked on this and af­ter some re­as­sur­ance to what is usu­ally only a small mi­nor­ity of par­ents, get full ap­proval. The sooner all Kent schools start to pro­vide it the sooner we will see re­duc­tions in the early preg­nan­cies, STIs, ho­mo­pho­bia and other prob­lems that can later blight peo­ple’s lives. Ray Duff, Clarence Street, Folkestone. The Rev Canon David Trus­tram, vicar of Ten­ter­den and Small­hythe, Church Road, Ten­ter­den.

I WOULD like to tell you all how the de­ci­sion by Kent County Coun­cil to stop re­cy­cling plas­tic is af­fect­ing my house­hold. The first week af­ter the clo­sure I gave Ash­ford Bor­ough Coun­cil the plea­sure of re­mov­ing three black sacks full of plas­tic I had saved for re­cy­cling. This week I will be putting out two bags of rub­bish for col­lec­tion in­stead of my usual one. So all the lorry move­ments saved by Kent County Coun­cil are now be­ing made by our lo­cal rub­bish trucks, as the re­sult of their ac­tion has dou­bled my rub­bish. Mrs G. A. Por­ritt, by e-mail.

No one both­ers to re­ply

I AM writ­ing in ex­as­per­a­tion with re­gard to the ef­forts of my daugh­ter to ob­tain part­time em­ploy­ment in Ash­ford and the ap­palling dis­cour­tesy af­forded with re­gard to her ef­forts. Last year when she was 15, she ap­plied for 25-plus jobs in the Ash­ford area. No one had the cour­tesy to re­ply. We were told it was be­cause she did not have a Na­tional In­sur­ance num­ber. This came through to her be­fore her 16th birth­day this Fe­bru­ary. Since then she has ap­plied for a to­tal of more than 40 jobs, do­ing any­thing from washin­gup to serv­ing. The traders in Ash­ford are so ig­no­rant as not to re­ply to her ap­pli­ca­tions in any shape or form, with the ex­cep­tion of Boots and Sains­bury’s. Teenagers are called blind Mrs D. Chacks­field, By­brook Road, Ash­ford.

Can­di­dates stay silent

I HAVE re­cently re­turned to Eng­land af­ter 10 years abroad. When I lived in France, at the time of a lo­cal elec­tion, I would be sent de­tails of each party and can­di­date. I had no vote, but ev­ery house­hold had a right to the in­for­ma­tion. When I lived in Cal­i­for­nia, the same hap­pened. Democrats and Repub­li­cans each sent a man­i­festo to ev­ery house­hold. I had no vote, but it was good to be in­formed – even if each let­ter in­cluded an ap­peal for funds. To­day was a lo­cal elec­tion day here in Ash­ford. About 10 days ago I re­ceived a polling card, telling me that I had a vote. I have, how­ever, re­ceived noth­ing else what­so­ever. Ap­par­ently, in this coun­try I have a vote but no one wants it. Hed­ley Gren­fell-Banks, Manor House Drive, Ash­ford.

Lo­cal elec­tion round-up - pages 20 and 21

Work of art might ap­peal to Saatchi

IF the Con­ser­va­tive county coun­cil­lor was “shocked, ou­traged and mys­ti­fied” at the sale of Joey’s Wood (April 19), how on earth were the gen­eral pub­lic ex­pected to know of the sale? Had the Ken­tish Ex­press ar­ti­cle ap­peared be­fore the sale, I’m sure £28,000 could have been raised to save it. My artist son thinks the con­struc­tion of the cy­cle track a work of art. So could we not per­suade Charles Saatchi (the pur­chaser of Tracey Emin’s dirty bed) to buy this work of art? Put the young bik­ers back and call it “A Con­tin­u­ous Liv­ing Work of Art.” Betty Turner, Faver­sham Road, Ken­ning­ton, Ash­ford.

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