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Recent updates
  • Article: Mar 16, 2020
    By Wiltshire Council

    Following the announcement regarding the death of a Wiltshire resident from coronavirus, the Leader of Wiltshire Council has moved to reassure residents.

    Cllr Philip Whitehead, Leader of the Council, Wiltshire Council said: "We are so sorry to hear of the death of one of our residents and our heartfelt condolences are with his friends, family and loved ones at this incredibly difficult time."

    Last week the Government announced new guidance to reduce the spread of infection which requires anyone who has symptoms of a coronavirus infection - a new continuous cough and/or a high temperature (37.8 degrees centigrade or higher) - to stay at home for seven days from the point that their symptoms first started.

  • Armed Forces ()
    Article: Mar 11, 2020

    Liberal Democrat MP Jamie Stone will today lead a debate in Parliament where he will urge the Government to "make it easier for veterans and their families to access peer-led mental health support."

    The Highlands MP, who is the Liberal Democrat spokesperson for Defence, secured the Westminster Hall debate after winning cross-party support for his Bill which would require the Government to ringfence mental health spending for veterans and members of the armed forces.

    The campaign led by the Liberal Democrats comes in response to cuts which have left mental health charities, such as Combat Stress, no longer able to take on new referrals in England.

    On the day of the Budget, Mr Stone will use his debate to raise awareness about the increasing challenges faced by veterans trying to access mental health support.

    Speaking ahead of the debate, Liberal Democrat Defence spokesperson Jamie Stone said:

    "Since introducing my Bill to Parliament, many veterans have been in touch to tell me that armed forces personnel need access to care provided by people who know how mental health impacts people who have served.

    "Most of us will never be able to understand what our veterans have been through. That is why some of the best care available comes in the form of peer to peer support groups. However, Conservative cuts are making it harder for these services to exist, nevermind be set up.

    "It's not rocket science. The Government should make it easier for veterans and their families to access peer-led mental health support. I therefore urge Ministers to get serious and back my Bill."

    Supporting Mr Stone's campaign, Chief Executive of Combat Stress Sue Freeth, added:

    "82% of the veterans treated by Combat Stress have tried to engage with NHS services but their needs have not been met. The government needs to ringfence funding for specialist services such as ours, that understand and can successfully treat those veterans with complex PTSD."

  • Article: Mar 10, 2020
    By WC

    Tracy Daszkiewicz, Director of Public Health for Wiltshire Council, said: "I can confirm that a fourth adult in Wiltshire has tested positive for coronavirus after returning from a trip to Thailand, and they have self-isolated. This means we still only have four cases of coronavirus in Wiltshire.

    "Close contacts will be given health advice about symptoms and emergency contact details to use if they become unwell in the 14 days after contact with the confirmed cases. If you have not been contacted by Public Health England you do not need to take any action at this time.

  • Article: Mar 10, 2020
    By WC (edited)

    WC's Conservative administration is ignoring the Council's acknowledgement of a climate emergency in their obsession with pointless and harmful road-building.

    They describe the £2billion plan as 'vital'. They say it would 'boost the South West economy, address congestion on this busy road, and end the rat run situation for local residents'. In reality figures for the economy are unproven and distorted and dependent on yet more road schemes, congestion will expand to fill the space available to it, and the council could find other ways of avoiding rat-running if they chose. (Rat-running is what other people do: you and I just take the most convenient route.)

  • Police
    Article: Mar 9, 2020
    By Wiltshire Police

    Recent changes to policing in Wiltshire have involved a movement away from 'community policing' as government cuts bit into the force's ability to work effectively at the local level.

    The police have now made some changes which include:

    • Introduction of new policing teams in Warminster and Royal Wootton Bassett
    • Changing the names of community policing teams to reflect the towns from which they parade so their patch is easier for the public to understand
    • Reintroducing dedicated teams to focus on neighbourhood policing. These teams are made up of officers and PCSOs
  • Jules and Don Foster
    Article: Mar 9, 2020
    By Don Foster in GLD Challenge magazine 2019-20

    Don Foster - Building Regulations in the Lords

    Liberal Democrat peer, Don Foster, working with the Sustainable Energy Association,on 7 Feb 2020 introduced a Bill which will put the government's target for all homes to achieve Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) Band C by 2035 into law, ensuring that real action is taken on the climate crisis, rather than more years of delay and indecision. Don Foster said: "This Conservative government must be held to account in meeting core climate objectives. This starts with ensuring that our homes are insulated, and that it's easy for people to make the changes they need to save money on heating bills, helping the planet at the same time."

  • Horningsham Primary School
    Article: Mar 6, 2020
    By Ellen Nicholson

    It was both a pleasure and a privilidge to spend the afternoon at Horningsham Primary School taking part in 'what's my line' an aspirational assembly for reception to year 6 - 'guess the profession' 🏫 📖 👩‍⚕️

    Its always a great opportunity to speak with children about their possible career choices and their hopes for the future, having professionals come into school and discuss how they chose their career provides opportunity for questions and may spark a life long interest. The other participants and I noticed there were lots of future footballers and chefs (Masterchef anyone).

  • Christine Jardine ()
    Article: Mar 3, 2020

    Responding to the Government's publication of the Domestic Abuse Bill, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Christine Jardine said:

    "Survivors have been left waiting far too long, with millions of people having experienced domestic abuse since the Conservatives first promised this legislation almost three years ago. I'm glad the Government has therefore finally brought back the Domestic Abuse Bill.

    "Liberal Democrats will now work to get this badly-needed legislation into law as soon as possible, while also strengthening it to support all survivors of domestic abuse.

    "That includes recognising in law the trauma suffered by children who witness domestic abuse at home, and adding specific protections for migrant women, so that fears over their immigration status do not prevent them from coming forward to report violence or abuse."

  • UK - USA Trade deal ()
    Article: Mar 2, 2020

    Responding to analysis suggesting a US-UK trade deal will boost UK GDP by less than 0.2%, Sarah Olney, Liberal Democrat spokesperson for International Trade said:

    "Boris Johnson has repeatedly claimed that negative impacts of Brexit will pale in comparison to the benefits. But today's analysis is clear: the gains from the best-case trade deal with Donald Trump will not come close to outweighing what we expect to lose from leaving the EU.

    "The situation will be even more catastrophic if Boris Johnson sends the UK careering off a no-deal cliff edge, thanks to his self-imposed June deadline for talks. It is astounding that the Prime Minister is seemingly hellbent on risking UK prosperity.

    "Liberal Democrats will continue to fight against the PM's damaging hard Brexit plans. We will continue to push for what is in the national interest - the closest possible relationship with the EU."

  • Ed Davey ()
    Article: Mar 2, 2020

    Today Acting Leader of the Liberal Democrats, Ed Davey, has called on Boris Johnson to pause trade talks with the EU and extend the Brexit transition period so Ministers can focus on dealing with the Coronavirus threat.

    Ed Davey will say that the Prime Minister has so far failed to show any leadership as Coronavirus has spread. Managing the "gathering storm" of the Coronavirus, during a flooding crisis, whilst the Government is attempting the most complicated negotiations for generations is a "recipe for disaster".

    Ed Davey said:

    "Boris Johnson has been conspicuous by his absence during the flooding crisis, and has failed to show the leadership required over a threat as serious as Coronavirus.

    "Only yesterday the Health Secretary admitted that stockpiles for mitigating the damage of a "No deal Brexit" were being re-directed for the Coronavirus threat, even though last week Ministers confirmed a "No Deal Brexit" could now come as early as this June.

    "If a No Deal Brexit were to occur in the middle of a Coronavirus epidemic it would be a recipe for disaster. Lives could be put at risk, as the NHS and medical supplies could snap under the pressure.

    "Rather than obsessing with his own self-imposed Brexit deadlines, the Prime Minister must wake up, and recognise that it's better to be safe than sorry.

    "During this gathering storm the national interest surely suggests that the PM should seek an extension of the Brexit transition period and pause the trade talks. Then the NHS and local communities can get the funds and the focus they deserve, and the UK can talk to our European neighbours about how we can co-operate against the Coronavirus which does not recognise national borders."