Britain needs more risk-takers, not public sector workers

From: Timothy Kirkhope MEP, Scotton, Knaresborough, North Yorkshire.

Further to the front page article (Yorkshire Post, March 28), “Cutbacks put 53,000 jobs at risk in Yorkshire”, I read the conclusions of the Yorkshire Forward report as set out in this story with some incredulity.

We all regret the loss of any jobs in our regional economy but the revelation that almost all of the expected losses are in the public sector is illuminating.

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It ill behoves Rosie Winterton, the former Labour Minister for our region (and the person charged with job creation while in her job) to criticise the coalition Government for curbing public spending and possibly losing some public sector jobs in the process.

Everybody knows that building a vibrant private sector is the only way to a successful regional economy.

Of course, we need public sector workers, especially in the vital frontline occupations in the health service, police, and in social support, and losses of jobs anywhere is to be regretted, but to have an economy approaching 50 per cent of reliance on the public sector is surely the recipe for disaster.

I congratulate all those entrepreneurs who are starting up new businesses and employing more workers and those who encourage and help them.

I applaud the SMEs who are entitled not only to respect by the Government, but also to help by reducing the burden of high taxation and over-regulation whether from Brussels or from Westminster; and I hope that our new Local Enterprise Partnerships really work to further encourage new private business and stand up against bureaucracy whether national or local.

The Yorkshire Post 50 Fastest awards ceremony which I attended last week, recognising the innovative and exciting risk-takers in the regional business community, was a good example of how Yorkshire must now go forward.

We need new, progressive, risk-takers, like those people, not pre-historic policies like those espoused by Rosie Winterton and her socialist colleagues.

From: Jill Knight, High Street, Hovingham, York.

THE coalition Government has announced “adjustments” to the allowances to 15-18 year olds, formerly Education Maintenance Allowance. It is extremely disappointing for those young people in this stage of education choices.

Firstly, the original £590m has still been chopped by 60 per cent; the money currently available will be subject to a tight means test, and also it seems may be dependent on “good results” as perceived by college and school authorities.

It is grossly unfair for families facing a difficult time financially overall and there will also be cherry picking by teachers who need results to justify course funding or the like.

All teachers know that poor performers can often come up with the goods, especially in a new teaching environment. We risk losing the talents and energy of dozens and dozens of our young people locally to dead-end jobs or none at all.

Yet the economy needs a trained and well-educated workforce. Those not in the swim will be left to shink and in a time of high unemployment deemed to be workshy.

Parents are faced with awful choices and the young are bewildered and angry. Do people think this is fair in any way?