Councillor report – November 2021

In this report, I have provided a summary of all the work I have been doing over the past few weeks. As well as my role as a ward councillor, I chair the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee and the Turnpike Lane Strategy Group.

Meeting with Parkside Malvern Residents Association

On 19 October 2021, my ward colleagues and I met representatives of Parkside Malvern Residents Association (PMRA). They have longstanding concerns about Hornsey Park Road spanning over a couple of decades. These include the use of the road as a ‘rat run’, vehicles driving down it really fast causing vibrations in properties and the way cars are parked partly on the kerb. They also presented ideas for a new zebra crossing which is due to be installed on the road beside the new children’s park on the St. Williams development on Clarendon Road.

PMRA has been particularly active over the years and raised these concerns through a petition and Catherine West MP. They have also developed a strategy for the road. I hope that we, as a council will be able to adopt their strategy and address most of the concerns. It is a shame that these concerns have now existed for such a long period of time.

Violence against Women and Girls (VAWG) Scrutiny Review

At the Overview and Scrutiny Committee (OSC Committee) Meeting which I chaired on 7 October 2021, the OSC Committee formally adopted VAWG as the main focus of the scrutiny review over the coming months. This will involve gathering evidence from various stakeholders and those involved in the work around VAWG.

On 14 October 2021, I chaired the first evidence gathering session on the VAWG scrutiny review. Both Manju Lukhman, Strategic Lead and Commissioner and Dr Will Maimaris, Director for Public Health gave evidence to the OSC Committee. They talked about the work that the council is doing and highlighted the council’s 10-year VAWG strategy which is available at:

https://www.haringey.gov.uk/social-care-and-health/health/public-health/domestic-violence-and-abuse-and-violence-against-women-and-girls/violence-against-women-and-girls/haringeys-approach-violence-against-women-and-girls

Although OSC Committee originally set out to do a review into knife and gun crime, we decided to shift our focus on VAWG because there is a real possibility of effecting a policy change in this area especially because the Met Police are also reviewing their policy.

I appeal to Labour Party members to send in their evidence on VAWG to the OSC Committee (via me) or contact me if you want to give evidence or suggest individual(s) or group(s) to give evidence. We have a team of officers who are providing dedicated support to the OSC Committee. We want to take this opportunity to carry out a thorough review so that we can put forward recommendations in the new year.

Ducketts Common and Turnpike Lane Area

Residents and businesses continue to have concerns around crime and the fear of crime in the Ducketts Common and Turnpike Lane area. I did a walkabout with Met Police in September. I have since kept in touch with the police to monitor the effectiveness of ‘Project Taipan’ which has a focus on the area. Sergeant Clarke leads the unit with nine constables.

I understand that the unit issued Community Protection Notices to known gang members for possession of drugs and drug paraphrenia. They have also made a series of arrets and applied for a Criminal Behaviour Order.

If members would find it useful, I can invite the unit to a future branch meeting to give further information on the work they are doing in the Ducketts Common and Turnpike Lane area.

Easte Demolition Ballot – High Road West

This is relevant to Noel Park as we have high profile council estates in our ward some of which were previously slated for demolition. The first ever estate demolition ballot in Haringey took place on the Love Lane Estate as part of the High Road West regeneration scheme. In my capacity as the chair of the OSC Committee, I have received various emails and representations about alleged voter intimidation and interference with the estate demolition ballot that took place. As I reported to you previously, the OSC Committee has just completed the review into High Road West scheme. The recommendations will be published at the 29 November 2021 OSC Committee meeting. We are currently looking into what we can recommend in terms of the allegations into how the Love Lane estate demolition ballot was conducted.

Campaigning

There was a very successful canvassing session in Noel Park and a street stall outside Wood Green library on Saturday 9 October 2021. We need to organise more regular canvassing sessions in Noel Park in the coming weeks. The borough organiser, Harry Owen will need our December dates by 24 November so that they can be advertised to members.

Face to face surgery

My experience is that the level of casework I have handled during the pandemic has not dwindled even though we did not have face to face surgeries. I have been available on my council phone and email to receive residents’ enquiries. However, I sense that some residents have a strong preference to meet their Councillors face to face. My next surgery is on Saturday 6 November from 10.30am to 11.30am in Wood Green library.

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