Save the Accord

Protest … to save day care centre
By AAMER ANWAR
Published: 08th July 2012

AFTER last week’s column on the Olympics, I was contacted by families affected by the Commonwealth Games to be hosted in Glasgow in two years’ time.

Their plea involved the Accord day care centre, set up 20 years ago in the east end of Glasgow. There, 120 adults with learning disabilities built a community where people with needs as diverse as cerebral palsy and Down’s syndrome — as well as their families — could meet daily in a safe environment.

Their activities included learning, hydrotherapy, art, computing, making friendships and much more.

Yet the Accord was shut this year to be demolished for a ‘coach park’ for the Games that will last only 11 days.

The Labour-controlled city council had no difficulty in financing £20million to purchase land for the Games, but wouldn’t replace the centre.

Families claim all they have got from the council is lies and broken promises.

Shabby

The Games start in 2014, the centre is shut and the replacement is one rented room in Bambury Community Centre with space only for 60.

It is available for users to meet with carers, to then travel by bus elsewhere, but if the activity is cancelled they are left out in the cold, wind and rain — unlike at the Accord.

This is not a day care centre but a shabby afterthought of a ‘watertight bus stop’ for vulnerable adults.

Twenty of those with more serious disabilities were dispersed to Riddrie Day Care centre, but there is no space for the rest.

First Minister Alex Salmond recently gave the families hope and said the needs of those at the Accord must be met, but the council appears unwilling to listen and told the families to wait until after the Games.

Maybe the Scottish Government should bypass the council and give the families what they need now.

Grace, whose 26-year-old son Craig used the Accord five days a week, said: “You cannot put a price on your child’s happiness.

“Our kids are special people who need specialist care. They’re never going to get that in a room in a rundown community centre with next to no facilities.

“Many are unable to see their friends each day or to give their families a break from 24/7 care.

“Many do not have access to the specialist facilities and some could not attend the alternatives due to a lack of space.

“This has affected their behaviour and health. With the millions of pounds spent on these Games, the least that this council can do is give us a centre with the facilities we deserve.”

These families are not asking for much — just respect to live their lives as independently as possible in their communities.

If you believe in their struggle join ‘Save the Accord’ on Facebook, email savetheaccord@hotmail.co.uk or contact the council.

Read more: http://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/scotsol/homepage/news/4417392/Its-not-all-fun-and-Games-for-vulnerable.html#ixzz20QCU7Q9S

Posted by: gamesmonitor2014 | May 21, 2012

Salmond in Accord? More Salmond Promises on the Accord Centre

In an interview with local activist, Sean Clerkin, for In The City magazine, the First Minister Alex Salmond has once again made verbal assurances that he will create a permanent legacy for Accord Centre users at the Tollcross Aquatic Centre:

I will personally acts as a Guardian Angel to the people of the Accord Centre. I want a permanent legacy at Tollcross of a carers’ centre for the Accord Centre users“.

Sean Clerkin, commenting on the interview afterwards said:

The First Minister said he was especially impressed by the carers and the users of the Accord centre in the way they have behaved and the case they have made for a new centre

He agreed that the Harry Burns Centre in South Lanaerkshire could be replicated at the Tollcross Aquatic Centre giving a lasting legacy form the Commonwealth Games to the Accord Centre Carers and Users

He also said that an SNP-led administration would consider all possibilities in relation to the to their interim accomodation which at the present time is unacceptable, with 50 centre users being forced by the Glasgow Labour’s administration to occupy two rooms in the Bambury Community Centre in Barrowfield“. 

In addition, Mr.Clerkin further commented, “campaigners wanted the Accord Centre to be given a permanent home within the Tollcross Aquatic Centre after the Commonwealth Games in 2014 when it will be a major venue. The accord has been closed and uis scheduled to be demolished to make way for a coach park for the Games. Alex Salmond has given his personal assurance this will happen and ensured the Scottish Goverbment has given £150,000 to take the idea forward with all parties working together to achieve this outcome

This comes on the back of a letter to the East End Carers group by Mr Salmond in March 2012, where  he said he would “ensure” a modern facilty in the Tollcross Aquatic Centre as good as the excellent Harry Burns Complex in South Lanarkshire:

There is a real opportunity in the medium and long term to influence the shape of the new Aquatic Centre when it is adapted for community use following the Commonwealth Games in 2014

This brand new modern resource could be adapted to offer a similar facility to that which you saw when you visited the Harry Smith complex.”

I have therefore asked my officials, working in conjunction with Glasgow City Council, to prepare a funding package to ensure a modern facility along the lines I have described above is created within the Tollcross Aquatic Centre after the Games in 2014 have taken place“.

COMMENT:

While the context of this interview is loaded with pre-election SNP-promotional bias, the important thing to recognise is that the First Minister continues to make assurances that The Accord Centre Users and Carers will be relocated to modern facilities in the Tollcross Aquatic Centre. That he has been forced to do so, is testament to the brilliant campaign for modern disability facilities in the East End of Glasgow waged by the Carers and Users.  

However, while these ‘assurances’ are more than welcome the Users and Carers, and the people of the East End in general, need more than just verbal promises about the Tollcross Aquatic Centre. Also, the Bambury Centre is totally inadequate to serve the needs of people with severe learning difficulties. That issue is pressing and requires more than just assurances.

See the full interview and comment in In The City magazine, on pages 8-9 here

Posted by: gamesmonitor2014 | April 26, 2012

Vile ATOS get Lucrative Games Contracts

 

Atos Kills

 
ATOS is a multinational IT corporation responsible for ‘screening’ disabled people for work. In practice this means a highly lucrative job whereby ‘disability analysts’ are given 45 mins to decide whether someone is ‘fit for work’ or not. With so much money at stake, and with quotas to meet, ATOS are renowned and hated for shoving people back into the workforce whether they are able or not. This is a modern reign of terror that Edinburgh Coalition Against Poverty (ECAP) have repeatedly exposed:
 
“Atos Healthcare are a part of a private, profit-driven corporation. On behalf of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), they carry out the medical assessments now called the ‘Work Capability Assessments (WCA).

They are currently recruiting more staff to help meet government targets to force more people off benefits. The Government plans to cut £2.5 billion from ESA and to limit ESA benefit to just one year – presumably those who are deemed unable to work will have made a miraculous recovery.

The process is driven by cost cutting not objective medical opinion.The Government are doing this to reduce the massive public debt caused by the banks gambling on the financial markets. The most vulnerable in society are being made to pay for the greedy failures of the rich and the inevitable booms and busts of capitalist economics”.

ATOS have been given an IT contract for the Games (see below), and will also run the system that recruits the 15,000 volunteers the Games organisers say they require. The shamelessness of this appointment by the Games organisers is self-evident. Not only are ATOS workforce bullies, coercing  people with disabilities and the long-term unemployed into work; the perversity of commandeering 15,000 volunteers in an area with some of the highest unemployment figures in the UK is clearly a disgusting parody of a Games jobs legacy.
 
One thing is guaranteed: ATOS and the Games have not heard the last of this – no matter how hard ATOS try to suppress criticism of their bullying online.
 
 
***************************************
 
International IT company Atos become Official Supporter of Glasgow 2014
 
Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, Olympic and Commonwealth Games medallist Steve Cram MBE and athletes from the Scottish netball and hockey teams joined Glasgow 2014 at the city’s Scotstoun Stadium to unveil Atos as an Official Supporter.
 
The company, which employs 1,500 people in Scotland, is Glasgow 2014’s fourth Official Supporter and is a Worldwide IT Partner to the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Atos’ business technologists will be delivering critical applications and services essential to the successful staging of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, including a range of Games Management Systems and Games Information Systems, which will leverage Atos’ experience from over two decades of Olympic and Paralympic Games, including London 2012 and other major events worldwide.
 
The technology provided by Atos at Glasgow 2014 will enhance the experience of:
 
• Athletes and accredited Games participants: Atos will provide the accreditation systems that will be used by Glasgow 2014 to accredit up to 70,000 Games participants including athletes, officials, workforce, volunteers, media and sponsors.
 
The technology will manage the registration process, including online registration and sports entries, along with access and entitlement assignment. The accreditation software will also support the extensive background security checking processes that will be in place for the Games.
 
• Volunteers: Glasgow 2014 will recruit up to 15,000 volunteers to make the Games run as smoothly as possible. Atos will be providing the volunteer systems to facilitate the recruitment and management of volunteers, including the Volunteer Portal that will be a key information link between Glasgow 2014 and the volunteers.
 
• Media and sports officials: Atos will provide a Games Information System that will instantly relay results, athlete information, competition schedules, medal tables and sports records to accredited media, sports officials and the Glasgow 2014 website. Atos is one of only three Worldwide Partners for both the Olympic and Paralympic Games and has enjoyed a strong partnership with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) for a number of years.
 
Glasgow 2014 Chief Executive David Grevemberg said:
 
“We are delighted that Atos has joined us as an Official Supporter, and proud to have secured our first Olympic and Paralympic Partner for Glasgow 2014.
“Atos continues to demonstrate a commitment to sport and para-sport, and their track record in providing world class systems for a number of multi-sport Games, including London 2012, demonstrates their passion and capability to help Glasgow 2014 deliver an outstanding athlete centred and sport focused games.”
 
Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:
 
“As well as bringing a major international sporting event to Scotland, hosting the Commonwealth Games is a tremendous opportunity to put Scotland on the road to a healthier and more successful future. This latest supporter deal, the fourth to be announced, is great news and will ensure the IT at Glasgow 2014 is amongst the best in the world.
 
“The confirmation that this is the first Olympic and Paralympic Partner to come on board as an Official Supporter of Glasgow 2014 is also a significant step forward for the Games, and its support, alongside that of the other sponsors, will help to ensure that we see a fantastic Games in Glasgow, delivered on time and on budget.”
 
Gavin Thomson, Senior Vice President, Atos – Scotland, said:
 
“Atos is absolutely delighted to be an Official Supporter of the Glasgow 2014 Organising Committee providing Games Management Systems and Games Information Systems.
“As Worldwide IT Partner for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, Atos will be transferring knowledge and expertise gained from previous Games including London 2012 and other major events, to the benefit of Glasgow 2014.
 
“We are proud of what our business technologists deliver for all our clients in Scotland across a wide range of business sectors. We are passionate about delivering our world class solution from Scotland to the world stage.
 
“We share Glasgow’s vision to create a lasting legacy for Scotland from the Games, making faster progress towards a healthier nation, developing healthy communities and a strong and flourishing economy.”
 
Patrick Adiba, CEO Iberia – Olympics and Major Events, from Atos, said:
 
”We are really proud to be an Official Supporter of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games and look forward to working with the Organising Committee to deliver a successful Games. As the global IT leader for major events, our business technologists will bring their expertise and experience to the Games to ensure they run smoothly.”
 
Michael Cavanagh, Chairman, Commonwealth Games Scotland said:
 
“As one of the Commonwealth Games Associations participating in the Games, we cannot stress enough just how vital these services are to enable teams to function effectively. A quality accreditation system greatly assists the complex team entry process, whilst accurate, timely information and results help athletes plan their schedules in the final lead-in to competition and allows team management to track progress and promote their success as it happens. It is fantastic to see Atos with a world leading reputation in this area coming on board for Glasgow 2014.”
 
Richard Brown, Executive Director of Development and Regeneration Services at Glasgow City Council, said:
 
“We are pleased that Glasgow 2014 has secured another official supporter of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. To have attracted such a prestigious company reflects well on the expectations the business community has for the Games when they are hosted here. The support of the business community will be crucial to the delivery of an outstanding Games.”

Fun and Games: Part 1:

In the city of Willies, the powerless always come last

Kenneth Roy, Scottish Review

Glossy corporate image at the front, bit of work still to do at the back:
the Tontine Building being made ready for the Commonwealth Games backroom staff. But why the need for an expensive refurb in a city
groaning with empty office space?

 This is the story of two houses. The first house wasn’t worth much – £30,000 in compensation when they decided to pull it down – but for the family in the east end of Glasgow who lived in it, and who liked living in it, it was their home.
     They turned down the derisory offer and refused to budge. They dug in for a long fight. In the end they barricaded themselves into their own house. It took a deputation of about 60 – the police assisted by miscellaneous bureaucrats – to break down the barricades and evict them. It was an unpleasant scene at 5 o’clock one morning, but all over within a couple of hours.Mission accomplished: they demolished the house. Quite soon it will be part of the car park for the 10-day party known as the Commonwealth Games 2014. This is one of the unappreciated little ironies of all major sporting events – the first requirement is somewhere for the sedentary to leave their vehicles.
     So much for the first house: it’s gone. If there is a lesson to be drawn – what is sometimes called a moral – it is only the usual one. The losers in the big race are always the powerless. The Accord, a centre for people with learning disabilities in the east end, is also out of the running for a medal. Its building is going too, sacrificed to athletics.
     The second house, not far away in the same city, is a more distinguished property, once frequented by the tobacco lords. After its association with smoking and the fortunes to be made from the habit, the building is being converted into a temple of health as the administrative headquarters of the Commonwealth Games 2014. It will be a symbol of the early 21st-century fetish for competitive sport at any cost – almost literally any cost.
     Formerly known as the Tontine Building but now re-named Commonwealth House, this property is being restored at a cost of – well, what? When City Building LLP proudly announced some time ago that it had won the contract for the refurb, it said nothing about the value of the job. Nor, so far as we can see, did anyone else mention a figure.
     We should not be surprised by City Building LLP’s reticence in this matter. It is renowned for its reluctance to divulge details of its own financial transactions.
     When, for example, it gave some work to a refrigeration company owned by a man called Willie Haughey, it refused to put a price on the work on the grounds that such information was ‘commercially sensitive’. But should commercial sensitivity have been outweighed in this case by political sensitivity? As it happened Mr Haughey was at that stage the most generous financial backer of the Labour Party in Scotland. As it happened, most of the directors of City Building LLP were Labour councillors. As it happened, the company was owned by the Labour-controlled Glasgow City Council. There was speculation that the value of the contracts to Mr Haughey’s company might have been as much as £10 million.
     Last month, the managing director of City Building LLP, Willie Docherty – you don’t have to be a Willie to be involved with this lot, but it helps – took early retirement in his mid-50s. He seems to have become bored with retirement, as people do, and has an exciting new job as managing director of Morrison Scotland LLP, ‘a leading repairs and maintenance provider in the housing sector’, with close links to North Lanarkshire Council.
     Suggestions that Mr Docherty left his former employer with a pay-off not unadjacent to £600,000 have been neither confirmed nor denied by City Building LLP, which says that the terms of his severance are confidential. The fact that a public body with duties of public accountability – Glasgow City Council – is ultimately responsible for this company seems to count for little in the city of Willies.
      We have not asked City Building LLP how much their contract at the Tontine Building is worth. If they would like to tell us, these columns are open. But when our deputy editor visited the site recently, she was told informally that the refurb is costing £7 million. If true, this is a veritable snip in the context of the total spend on the Commonwealth Games 2014. Why, the Sir Christopher Hoy Velodrome is coming in at £13 million and rising. But there is a difference. While Glasgow is relatively short of velodromes named after Sir Christopher Hoy, it is positively groaning under the weight of empty office space.
     One estimate puts the surplus at 1.7 million square feet. No doubt the organisers of the Commonwealth Games could have walked into a ready-made office block at a highly advantageous rent. Instead, they have entered into a business relationship with a company which invariably attracts the adjective ‘controversial’.
     According to the games’ official website the Tontine deal is a ‘shinning example of advanced thinking’. Big on the high jump, relatively poor on spelling – although ‘shinning’ could just about qualify as a new Commonwealth Games sport. But ‘advanced thinking’? Grandiose, certainly.
     Once the 10-day party is over, and the Tontine Building is vacated, it will be available for rent as office space, competing with all the other office space which lies vacant in Glasgow year after year. It will be part of the ‘legacy’ of the games about which which we hear so much – along with the Sir Christopher Hoy Velodrome, the car park and the bitter memory of an eviction. But the Accord Centre hopes to be given a room in another building. That’s something.

2 Kenneth Roy is editor of the Scottish Review

Posted by: gamesmonitor2014 | April 26, 2012

Olympic Satire Rings True – Social Engineering on a Grand Scale

http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/society/olympics-doing-exactly-what-they-were-supposed-to-201204245154/

Olympics doing exactly what they were supposed to
24-04-12
 
THE 2012 Olympics have been declared a resounding success as the first busload of undesirables was banished from East London.
 

Who Said You Could Look at It?

 Organisers said the event was at least four months ahead of schedule in making the east of the city as unaffordable as the west to people who are either unemployed or have a proper, actual job.In preparation for the post-Olympic influx of six-figure bullshit consultants, Newham Council has now begun herding its substandard social housing tenants into sorting pens before despatching them to a corner of the UK more suited to their third-rate bone structure and beastly televisual inclinations.

Sebastian Coe, Lord of the Olympics, said: “The cleansing has begun, even before the first javelin has been javelled.

“I would like to award Newham Council a gold medal. They are the Fatima Whitbread of enforced gentrification.”
 
London mayor Boris Johnson added: “We can either have a city wiped clean of low-income troglodytes or we can spend millions encircling London’s hard-working neighbourhoods with 14ft high security fences.

“This will not destroy the social fabric of the east end it will just make it the sort of social fabric one could imagine sharing witty remarks with at a summer drinks party.”

Meanwhile, the first consignment of untermenschen stumbled from their bus, blinking and confused, to be faced with the harsh reality of Stoke-on-Trent.

Emma Bradford, a single mother of two, said: “Fuck.”

 
The city proclaims it wants to get everyone active in sports, yet when local people in Maryhill take it into their hands to try to improve neglected recreation facilities in their area, they are ‘locked out’ by Glasgow Life, the privatised remnants of Glasgow City Council’s Leisure and Recreation services. Follow the links below to support local initiative in Maryhill.
 
Community Cleanup Crew Threatened by Glasgow Life Official

http://powerincommunity.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/community-cleanup-crew-threatened-by.html

 25th April, Maryhill, Glasgow

Glasgow Life official Lynne Colvin has sent a letter to a community cleanup crew in Maryhill threatening that any “unauthorised access or subsequent ‘work’ to either the running track or tennis courts will be reported to Strathclyde Police immediately.”

Local resident and community organiser Nick Durie said: “I was shocked when I saw this threatening letter. The idea that the police will be called in against parents and teachers for tidying up our local area beggars belief.”
Teacher Stephen Koepplinger, who received the letter, has repeatedly met with Glasgow Life and council officials to have the facilities opened for after-school activities, but they have refused to take action. The track and courts have sat unused ever since Glasgow Life erected a fence to keep out locals in the wake of a community cleanup effort last year.Stephen founded and runs the After School Activities Programme Scotland, a registered charity. He said: “Our teens need more to do. People say that our kids are engaging in anti-social behaviour, well, if we don’t give them things to do they’ll find things to do.”Organisers say they intend to go ahead with their planned cleanup at 3pm on Sunday.

* At present one teenage girl in ten fails to take part in any physical activity at all, even during peak months for sporting or other physical activity. Data shows that this inactivity in children and teenagers is a growing problem. http://www.sportscotland.org.uk/NR/rdonlyres/EE0568EA-9616-4C50-84DB-87F8E88FA9C0/0/ActiveSchoolsNetworkYearthreeevaluation.pdf (page 29 onwards).

 * Where Stephen is from, in Aurora Ohio, they have the Ohio model for sports participation after school. http://www.asapscotland.org/Gallery/Ohio.ppt At present Glasgow take up of after school sports activities is around 2% of all available participation sessions. In Aurora Ohio takeup of available sports participation sessions is at 41%. Sport Scotland’s Active Schools programme urges greater take up of after school sports participation sessions as a means of tackling Scotland’s culture of low levels of physical activity. Attached is a photo of the running track in its current dilapidated state.

Stephen Koepplinger, teacher After School Activity Programme
07766 708 363 skoepplinger@gmail.com

Nick Durie, community organiser Power in Community
07798 903 944 nick.durie@googlemail.com

ASAP (After Schools Activities Programme) was founded by Stephen Koepplinger. He started the charity because from his perspective as a classroom teacher Scottish Teenagers need more to do after school. http://www.asapscotland.org/ 

++++++++++++++
++++++++++++++
 
Maryhill Locked Out (public action): https://www.facebook.com/events/282235085193006/ 
 
 
++++++++++++++
++++++++++++++

Letter from Lynn Colvin, Glasgow Life to Stephen Koepplinger, ASAP
From: “Colvin, Lynn” <Lynn.Colvin@glasgow.gov.uk>
Date: 25 April 2012 17:14:21 GMT+01:00
To: <stephen@asapscotland.org>
Subject: Maryhill locked out
 

Dear Mr Koepplinger

I am writing to advise you that I have been made aware of a Facebook page publicising an event titled ‘Maryhill Locked Out’. 

With regards to the Maryhill Park Running Track and Tennis Courts I can confirm that no permissions have been granted for the activities outlined on this page. The page indicates that “volunteers will set to work restoring the running track and tennis courts at 3.30pm”. Glasgow Life are responsible for the management of this track and tennis courts and have not authorised any such work. 

Glasgow Life have brought this matter to the attention of Strathclyde Police as we are concerned about potential damage to Glasgow City Council assets and any attempts at unauthorised access or subsequent ‘work’ to either the running track or tennis courts will be reported to Strathclyde Police immediately.

I understand that you are one of the organisers of this event and would wish to advise you of our position.

Glasgow Life have been in discussion with local clubs and Glasgow City Council regarding potential developments at these sites. If you have suggestions for these facilities I would recommend that you approach Glasgow Life on a formal basis to present your proposals. 

Regards

Lynne Colvin

Cluster Manager

Glasgow life

20 Trongate

Glasgow

Posted by: gamesmonitor2014 | April 12, 2012

Biased Games Legacy Debate – Scotland Tonight

On Scotland Tonight the other evening Dr.Libby Porter from the Glasgow Games Monitor challenged the boosterist promotional drivel of both the SNP (Shona Robinson) and the Labour Party (Patricia Ferguson). While they both told us how wonderful everything was going to be because of the Games, Dr.Porter reminded them  forcefully of the “disbenefits” that have been ignored by the media and politicians with particular reference to the destruction of Dalmarnock: the Accord Centre and the shocking neglect of disabled children; the brutal eviction of the Jaconelli family; and the CPO’s of the shopkeepers in Dalmarnock. We’ve covered all this extensively on the blog and in the last edition of our paper voice, the East End Eye.

MYTH: The programme also continued to perpetuate the myth that the Games are on budget. This is a patent lie. As we’ve observed here before the initial budget was £373 million. This was then raised to £454 millon before being been increased again to the current figure of £523.6 million – a 40% increase from the original estimate. The same deception is being pulled at the London Olympics where the initial budget in 2007 was £2.4 billion, then it increased in to £9 billion within two years. It is now running at £11 billion!  (and this in a time of austerity for the poor and enormous wealth for the rich). We are still two years away from the Games in Glasgow remember, and ‘hidden’ costs will soon appear.

You may need to download a new version of flash to see the clip below:

Posted by: gamesmonitor2014 | March 18, 2012

Poverty Games – Video Footage

Posted by: gamesmonitor2014 | March 16, 2012

Poverty Games Torch Relay Comes to Glasgow: Full Story!

End Poverty. It's Not a Game

Should we tolerate our Council pouring millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money into a bottomless bucket for spending on a 10-day party while people face rising unemployment, welfare cuts, homelessness and poverty? Yesterday, 15 March 2012, local people and supporters turned out to walk through the streets of the East End of Glasgow to say NO.

The event was the ‘”Poverty Games torch relay” and we were accompanied by Mrs Elizabeth Hogg, a visitor to our city bringing the “Poverty Olympics torch” all the way from Vancouver. Campaigners there have worked tirelessly to highlight the gross inequalities of wealth distribution in what is allegedly the world’s most ‘liveable city’ – especially related to the impacts of the Winter Olympics 2010 on the city’s poorest people.

Elizabeth Hogg, Vancouver Poverty Olympics

We began outside the new National Indoor Sports Arena and Chris Hoy Velodrome, still under construction. There, Elizabeth handed over the torch (skilfully fashioned from an old toilet-plunger!) to anti-eviction campaigner Margaret Jaconelli.

Torch Handover

Margaret Jaconelli with Supporters

 

Elizabeth said that she was pleased to be in Glasgow to continue the work of those highlighting poverty in Vancouver. She had spent time today with campaigners learning about the impact the Commonwealth Games is having on Glasgow’s poorest neighbourhoods.

Supporters

Supporters

Marching to Dalmarnock

 

 

Then we took the torch, and a host of colourful banners, along London Road past the Commonwealth Games construction sites and down Springfield Road, where we stopped outside a series of boarded-up shops which have been closed to make way for the Commonwealth Games Athlete’s Village. We were just a stone’s throw from the pile of rubble that remains after the Jaconelli’s family home in Ardenlea Street was evicted through a compulsory purchase order (CPO) and demolished. The shopowners and the Jaconelli family are yet to receive compensation – they have all lost so much in the face of this mega-event.

Five Star Treatment?

Glasgow Anti-Eviction Alliance

 

We heard about the disgraceful land deals being done with Council’s pals just across the road, something we have reported widely on this blog, but which is totally ignored in the mainstream media. Meanwhile, the people who live in the local community, who are part of it, who are what makes it a community, are treated with contempt by Glasgow City Council and the Scottish Government.

Margaret Jaconelli

Solidarity

 

Margaret and her husband Jack Jaconelli both made statements, with Jack suggesting that the Chris Hoy Velodrome will have to become the “Chris Hoy Bingo-drome” after the Games as nobody in the local area – faced with rising unemployment and a housing crisis – will be able to afford to go there.

Jack Jaconelli

Unable to attend in person, Mike Dailly, principal solicitor at the Govan Law Centre, and legal counsel to both the Jaconelli’s and some of the carers of the Accord Centre, sent along a statement. He stated:

“When it comes to compulsory purchase orders (CPO) it’s not fair there’s discriminatory treatment between householders and commercial entities, whether in the Commonwealth Games Village or elsewhere in Scotland.  Big business and property developers get shown the red carpet while members of the local communities get a CPO cosh. No real negotiation, just take it or leave it and we’ll CPO you and then evict”. 

“I remain convinced that Scotland CPO practice and procedure is not compliant with the Human Rights Act on a number of grounds and we are hopeful that this will be tested in the ongoing case of Jaconelli v. UK before the European Court of Human Rights. Communities must be treated fairly and reasonably by public authorities and their rights should not be overlooked, sidestepped or ridden over, for commercial reasons”.

As secretary of the Glasgow Anti-Eviction Alliance Margaret Jaconelli told us how she is fighting to challenge her own eviction, and CPO’s more generally, through the European Court of Human Rights court case. The torch then travelled to outside the Accord Centre, soon to be closed and demolished to make way for a Games bus park. The users are to be shoved into one unfit room in a community centre.

At the soon-to-be-demolished Accord Centre

Grace Harrigan (Save the Accord) with' Poverty Torch'

 

Grace Harrigan, Save the Accord campaigner, stated that this again shows the total disrespect for “the most vulnerable in our community”. Save the Accord campaigners have fought determinedly for suitable new premises for over a year now and so far have managed to obtain an ‘assurance’ from the First Minister Alex Salmond promising a feasibility study to convert part of the Tollcross Leisure Centre after the Games for a replacement centre.

Mr.Salmond’s promise is welcome, the carers said, but suspicions remain. For two years at least they are still being forced into a community centre which they have repeatedly stated is inadequate for their needs and for the rest of the East End community, and as of yet, there is no guarantee beyond the words of a politician that the promised new premises will come to light.

We know from previous experience how ruthless Glasgow City Council can be, and we know from previous Games events in other cities that promised potential benefits can be very vulnerable. The fight continues for justice, resources and a decent ‘legacy’ for the people of the East End from the Commonwealth Games 2014. The experience of previous mega-events tells us that community struggle is the only way to achieve any worthwhile social  gains. We can’t hope or expect that politicians and developers share our interests. They don’t.

Get the background to the ‘real story’ of Dalmarnock in our latest special edition of the East End Eye!

The Images That Shame Glasgow City Council

Posted by: gamesmonitor2014 | March 16, 2012

East End Eye 4 – Out Now!

Booted by the Suited

Issue 4 of the East End Eye – a ‘Dalmarnock special’ – is now available as a PDF online. The Eye is the paper voice of Glasgow Games Monitor 2014. We distribute the paper widely in the East End and across the city.

Issue Four: eastendeye_edition4

http://gamesmonitor2014.wordpress.com/east-end-eye-paper/

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