Don’t break our
hearts by breaking our Connexions
ON Tuesday, 15 February UNISON members across
Greater Merseyside leafleted the general public as part of an
ongoing campaign against cuts to the Connexions Careers Service. At
a time of record Youth Unemployment across Merseyside the service
dedicated to helping young unemployed people is itself being cut.
Connexions are the information, advice and guidance, 'Careers
Service' for young people age 13 to 19. Young people are seen in
school and then on leaving they can call into a Connexions office
for help and guidance on applying for courses, apprenticeships,
jobs, help compiling a CV and interview skills. However most
Connexions offices across Merseyside; Liverpool, Wirral, Sefton,
Halton, Knowsley, and St Helens; are now either closing or facing
On the Wirral the Wallasey Connexions office has already closed and
the Bebington Office is closing this week. Offices in Kirkby, Huyton,
St Helens, Widnes and Liverpool all face closure at the end of
March. With offices closing Young People will no longer have access
to a dedicated office to get help and support.
Connexions workers are themselves under threat of losing their jobs.
In 2011, 80 advisers across Greater Merseyside were made
compulsorily redundant and the fear is a similar number could be
made unemployed again.
Young people in schools wanting Careers Guidance will also be
affected. All Careers work in schools covered by Connexions will end
31st March, and unless a school "buys in" services
then pupils will have no way of seeing an expert, impartial, Careers
Adviser for a face to face interview.
Schools have not been given any money by the government to fund this
new duty and the fear is Careers Guidance in schools is in danger of
being cut, or worse, disappearing altogether.
It must be made clear to parents that their children may no longer
have access to Careers Guidance in or outside of school, or be able
to visit a Connexions Centre near them for help as the service is
being radically cut.
A public health warning has
been issued about industrial alcohol being sold in Liverpool as
vodka. The city council’s Alcohol and Tobacco Unit (ATU) were
alerted to the problem by a resident in Broadgreen who bought a
bottle of vodka from a person they met while shopping in a city
market. They were concerned about its taste and brought it to the
Analysis of the "vodka" showed it contained denatured
or industrial alcohol and was unfit for human consumption. It had an
incorrect alcohol by volume (ABV) on its label
The vodka was in a one litre bottle and was labelled Revolution. The
reverse of its label implied that it was an Aldi product. Neither
the Revolution chain of bars nor Aldi supermarkets have any
connection with this product.
"This is not only an illegal trade, but potentially a very dangerous
one. It could seriously damage the health of any one drinking it.
There are reports from other parts of the country of people’s
eyesight being damaged after they have drunk similar types of
alcohol. While we do not believe that it is circulating widely in
the city as yet, we are issuing this warning as we do not want
anyone at all to risk their health by buying this product. Residents
should not buy alcohol from unlicensed sources." said
Councillor Tim Moore, cabinet member for the environment and climate
ATU are working with off licences to ensure that anyone distributing
the product in Liverpool is identified.
Residents or traders who have been
offered quantities of this or similar spirits please call Gary
Baskott, Liverpool Alcohol Tobacco Unit on:- 0151 225 2501 or ring
Crimestoppers on:- 0800 555 111. Also members of the public in
other areas on Merseyside and Lancashire should keep an eye out for
these "spirits" as they might be offloaded in other
areas outside Liverpool now that the warning has been issued!
New waterfront development plan
to develop Liverpool's waterfront has been unveiled that is by
developer Neptune Developments. The plans will be submitted to the
council later this month and includes apartments, a 170 bed hotel
and retail and leisure space on the site at Wapping, known as the
Baltic Triangle. The plans also include the completion of an
underground car park and pavement cafe. If the plans are approved,
Neptune hopes to be on the site as early as this summer.