🚉Plans announced to improve accessibility at Catford Station!

Posted on Apr 16th 2019 by Team Catford

It was announced last week that Catford Station will be given a share of a £300m government grant allocated to improve accessibility at railway stations across the UK. The Access for All programme will install a lift at the station which is currently only accessible by stairs.

Leave your thoughts on the Team Catford website on this and any other #Catford issue

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Affected by the WINDRUSH scandal?

Janet Daby MP for Lewisham East invites you to her Windrush surgery that will be held on the 21st March 2019 at The Green Man, 355 Bromley Road, SE6 2RP.

Despite the Government’s apology for the Windrush scandal many of the Windrush generation, their descendants and families are still suffering great hardship. This surgery has been created to speak to the many people that feel that they have been affected by the hostile environment. We will have a number of professionals on hand to deal with your enquiries.

Mrs Janet Daby MP

Member of Parliament for Lewisham East

Renew your Freedom Pass now 🚌 🚆 🚂 🎫

Is your freedom pass due to expire on 31st March?

>> Click here to renew online

If your Older Persons Freedom Pass expires on 31 March 2019 you will receive a letter in early February telling you how to renew your pass.

By law, Freedom Passes must be renewed every five years. Therefore, residents whose pass expires on 31 March 2019 will need a new pass in order to keep using the scheme.

The letters to older persons pass holders were sent out in early February to all users with a Freedom Pass expiring on 31 March 2019. If you did not receive a letter by the end of February, you should contact the Freedom Pass Team on info@freedompass.org or call 0300 330 1433.

REMEMBERING #StephenHawking

Genius : Socialist : Campaigner

The great Stephen Hawking – who died one year ago today – was a man of the left. Perhaps there’s something about looking out at the stars which motivates us to want to protect our world?

He was a lifelong campaigner against nuclear weapons; argued vigorously for the NHS; publicly denounced the Iraq War as a “war crime”; presented climate change as an existential threat to humanity; exhibited indomitable solidarity with occupied Palestinians; and, deeply offended by the level of economic inequality under modern capitalism, always advocated for a radical redistribution of wealth.

Of course, Hawking didn’t become a socialist just because he was a physicist.

There was also the influence of his politically-minded mum, Isobel, who took him on CND marches to Aldermaston when he was a kid. And Hawking always held a deep seated gratitude to Nye Bevan’s National Health Service which was so important to supporting him throughout his life of struggle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Hawking’s socialism was woven through every part of his being, from his science to his family. No story about him makes sense – or does justice – without it.

Buy the tea towel from: radicalteatowel.co.uk

📣 Rushey Green Assembly & Mayors Question Time 📣

If you live or work in the Rushey Green Ward (map below) you are warmly invited to the next Rushey Green Assembly meeting which is taking place on Wednesday 13th March 2019, from 7pm to 9pm in Room 1 & 2 Civic Suite, Catford, 1 Catford Road, London SE6 4RU. The meeting will start promptly at 7pm.

The Rushey Green Assembly is an open community meeting that takes place four times a year. The assembly is a place where you and others can work together with your local Councillors, the police, local organisations and the wider community to make Rushey Green a better place to live, work and learn.

The meeting is for people who live, work or learn in the Rushey Green area – you are a part of that community, so come along, have your say and get involved!

What’s on the agenda at this meeting?

1. Mayor’s Question Time – the new Mayor of Lewisham Damien Egan will be holding a Q & A session at this meeting. If you have a question for the Mayor please send it to us by emailing Adeyinka.joseph@lewisham.gov.uk There would also be further opportunity to submit your question at the meeting if you are not able to send it to us beforehand.

2. Recycling Consultation – An officer from the Council’s Waste & Recycling services will be at the meeting to provide information on improving waste and recycling.

3. Bakerloo line extension – Find out the latest update on the proposal to extend the Bakerloo line to improve transport connections to Lewisham

4. Discussion about crime hot spot – Take part in the discussion on identifying crime hot spot across the ward.

5. Community updates and other business – is also your chance to tell people what’s happening in your area. If you would like to update the assembly on anything, please let us know at the meeting and we will try to give you a forum to promote your news.

If you cannot attend the meeting but would still like to give your views, please contact the Rushey Green Assembly Coordinator, Ade Joseph on 020 8314 6026 or email your comments to adeyinka.joseph@lewisham.gov.uk

We look forward to welcoming you to the meeting next Wednesday 13th March.

Back the Bakerloo Line

Why you should #BackTheBakerlooLine to #Catford & beyond:

-36 trains p/h 🚆

-100,000 new homes 🏡

-130,000 jobs 💼

-interchanges with every Tube 🔀

-increases business rates receipts 🧾

– relatively easy to deliver 🛠

& 10th price of Crossrail 2 yet delivers 50% of the housing benefits

Sign up to #BackTheBakerlooLine Extension by signing up here -> www.backthebakerloo.org.uk

This week at the Full Council meeting of Lewisham, I highlighted the benefits of the #Bakerloo Line Extension not just for Lewisham and Catford but for London in its entirety. We must as both a Lewisham and London Community make the case as to why this development needs to be a strategic priority for the TfL, GLA, Mayor of London and HM’s Government.

Being a Sanctuary Borough: Defending LGBT+ Chechens

This LGBT+ History Month rather than just celebrating, I’m agitating against the Human Rights abuses faced by my Chechen siblings. Lewisham is proudly a Sanctuary Borough, and this policy will ensure we work with NGOs and Charities to be fully aware of the needs of LGBT+ Refugees.

Below was my speech to Full Council (delivery may have varied). I’m pleased to say the motion was passed unanimously.

“Earlier this month the Russian LGBT Network confirmed reports that the Chechen authorities have resumed large-scale arrests of individuals believed to be gay or lesbian, imprisoning and torturing them.

“According to that organization’s protected sources, around 40 people have been arrested since December and at least two people have died under torture. Police have also reportedly demanded that families of gay and lesbian people commit “honor” killings against their relatives and provide evidence of their murders.

“These appalling reports follow a previous “gay purge” in 2017, which saw hundreds of men detained and tortured and put Chechnya’s dismal human rights record back in the global spotlight.

“A government spokesman has dismissed their latest report as “complete lies”. Chechnya, and its authoritarian leader Ramzan Kadyrov, have consistently denied allegations of illegal detentions and human rights abuses.

“In an interview with the BBC last year (Chechnya LGBT: Dozens ‘detained in new gay purge’ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-46871801), Mr Kadyrov said the allegations were “an invention by foreign agents” or created by activists looking for money. Mr Kadyrov and other government figures have repeatedly claimed Chechnya has no gay population at all.

“The Russian LGBT Network, an activist group, has been monitoring the situation in Chechnya and working to evacuate people from the region since reports of the crackdown emerged in 2017. International Human Rights Group and Activists often comment on the contrast between the the modern Chechen capital Grozny and it’s shining glass skyscrapers, luxury boutiques and fashionable cafes which line the streets of the city and its regressive and aggressive authoritarian rule. Arranging meetings with human rights activists requires intricate planning to ensure their anonymity and safety are preserved.

“The activists who have documented the attacks on the LGBT community have often acted with unimaginable courage, risking arrest, torture, ill treatment and even death if they are identified.

“It is said that behind Grozny’s new glossy facades of offices and homes hang portraits of Kadyrov. It is almost impossible to watch TV or listen to the radio without hearing his name. Kadyrov seemingly permeates every aspect of life in Chechnya, and how his system of absolute rule has broken down law and order inside the republic. Allegedly anyone who dares to complain about officials or their policies faces public humiliation or worse. It’s alleged typical punishments for dissent include being forced to make a televised apology, having your house burnt down or having fabricated criminal charges slapped on you.

“Let’s not forget that Chechnya remains a part of the Russian Federation, which is a signatory to many international human rights treaties. When news of the 2017 crackdown broke, Russian human rights activists and journalists appealed to the federal authorities, demanding an investigation and immediate action to protect the lives of LGBT people in Chechnya. Maxim Lapunov, so far the only victim to speak publicly about his ordeal, filed a formal complaint with the Russian authorities in September 2017. In harrowing detail Maxim described being held for 12 days in a blood-soaked cell, beaten with sticks and having a plastic bag placed over his head.

“In November 2018, after months of denials and obfuscation, the Russian authorities said they were unable to confirm Maxim’s claim and refused to open a criminal investigation into the allegations.

“This crushing blow for justice rang alarm bells for many activists in Chechnya, who knew that without accountability it was only a matter of time before the Chechen authorities resumed their atrocities. Sadly, they have already been proved right.

“In December 2018, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe published a report in which it accused Russia of shielding Chechen officials from scrutiny. It seems Kadyrov knows he has carte blanche when it comes to human rights abuses.

“Nevertheless, following the 2017 crackdown sustained international attention did succeed in temporarily halting the arrests. This shows that Chechen and Russian authorities are not immune to criticism. The international community, therefore, can play an important role in pressurising political elites into acknowledging their crimes and taking meaningful steps to bring those responsible to justice.

“In 2017 the Russian LGBT Network, supported by other NGOs, helped evacuate hundreds of people from Chechnya and in some cases relocated them elsewhere. Several countries, including Canada, France, Germany and Lithuania granted asylum to dozens, though sadly they stand out for their generosity, and other governments were reluctant or too slow to offer protection. This time, governments should be prepared to expedite the asylum process so that anyone who wants to leave Chechnya can do so promptly and safely.

“Someone who is seeking to be a Refugee/Asylum Seeker only has five grounds on which they can apply – The UN defines this as any person who has:

“a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of

race,

religion,

nationality,

political opinion or

membership of a particular social group,

and is unable to or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country

“And this is where we, as a proud sanctuary Borough, can and should play our role, ensuring that not only are we known as a safe place, skilled at supporting any individual at fear of persecution irregardless of their sexuality or gender identity, but as an arm of Government, it is also our responsibility to call out all incidents of oppression and make sure that it isn’t just this authority, but this nation, becomes a sanctuary for all those living in fear of persecution- and for the Chechen authorities to know that the World is watching, and that these horrendous crimes, and their actions in it, are not going unnoticed.”

Holocaust Memorial Day

So incredibly proud to have Lord Alf Dubs represent my Party in Parliament… he is one of 10,000 kindertransport escapees, taken in by Britain, and as a politician has worked hard to protect children fleeing violence, persecution as child refugees.

Today is Holocaust Memorial Day, where we commemorate all lives lost to genocide and other atrocities.

This year also marks 80 years since the outbreak WWII, a war against fascism; the 25th anniversary of the mass slaughter of Tutsis in Rwanda and 40 years since the end of the Khmer Rouge terror in Cambodia.

Labour for a fairer deal for commuters

🚂DELIGHTED to be out at #Catford Stations this morning with Cllr’s Muldoon & Krupski showing the difference the Labour Party in power makes in #London and arguing for a better deal than what the Tories offer with National Rail Services. 🌹

Lewisham ‘Welcomes the World’ at London’s New Years Day Parade

BIG congratulations to #TeamLewisham for their entry into the London New Year’s Day Parade #LNYDP

Celebrating #Lewisham and it’s history of “Welcoming The World” this year’s entry focussed on #Deptford and its role as a shipping port of #London!