THE Prime Minister recently acknowledged the vital role of buses in easing loneliness of the elderly (The Yorkshire Post, January 31). She has also appointed a Minister for Loneliness.
Loneliness increases in winter because the elderly are often afraid to go out when the weather is bad and not everyone can afford taxis. Fewer elderly people now use the buses due to the drastic decrease in timetables. Some areas are lucky to have one bus an hour and, because of this, some elderly people are preferring to stay indoors – what is the use of a free bus pass if buses are decreasing?
While the PM wrestles with the wretched Brexit problem – and it has been the only topic on the political agenda for a long time – many issues are being sidelined. Homelessness, the NHS crisis and Universal Credit are only afforded a brief mention.
However it is only ‘lip service’ which this Government is paying to the elderly by appointing a Loneliness Minister and acknowledging the role of buses. Even worse is the hidden agenda of inter-generational conflict, with those who say wealthy pensioners are the cause of many of today’s problems. Not true!
The 1930s and war-torn 40s were very hard indeed and many women pensioners today have inadequate pensions. Moreover what better opportunity than the demands of Brexit to bury bad news and really hit the pensioners’ standard of living?
Free television licences for the over-75s are under attack and if buses are not being used then what use is a free bus pass? So TV and a free bus pass – essentials to a pensioner in combating loneliness – may become things of the past. Loneliness will increase and the notion of a Minister for Loneliness will have been buried long before Brexit has been resolved.
From: Shaun Kavanagh, Leeds.
WHY should anyone take note of what Tony Blair says? He was reputedly one of the worst Prime Minsters Britain has ever had (The Yorkshire Post, February 2).
When he left No 10, the country was not in a good place. He has always been an EU supporter and was welcomed into the so-called ‘ivory tower’ of Brussels having left British politics. He should keep his nose out of Brexit, as his opinions are worth little or nothing.
As for his comment about “voters being angered at MPs”, they have a right to be angered as Westminster is a shambles and a laughing stock.