Dollis Hill campaigner Alison Hopkins has welcomed a successful conclusion to the campaign to bring back a school crossing patrol to Our Lady of Grace Junior school – but Labour-run Brent Council faces criticism for the length of time the process has taken.
A new crossing patrol to replace the previous post-holder was promised to Dollis Hill Liberal Democrat councillor Javaid Ashraf by the Labour councillor in charge of school crossings at a council meeting in July 2011.
The new crossing patrol was meant to be in place for the new school year in September but Brent Council’s internal bureaucracy led to recruitment delays. The crossing patrol finally started work today (Monday 27 February) a full term-and-a-half overdue.
Councillor Ashraf, who collected petition signatures along with local campaigner Alison Hopkins and other residents and parents said:
I am shocked at how long it has taken Brent Council to put in place a new crossing patrol. Why has there been such a long delay? Pupils have been without their school crossing patrol through the darkest days of winter. I am pressing for an explanation and apology to be sent to the school.
The school crossing patrol service was under threat last year from Brent Labour’s plan to axe 30 school crossing patrol across the borough. However a campaign led by parents and local Liberal Democrat councillors forced Labour councillors to think again. The council agreed not to sack any existing school crossing patrol staff.
However if Labour’s proposed budget is passed at Brent Council tonight (27 February), the council will maintain Labour’s policy of not replacing crossing patrols at so-called low-priority sites if existing post-holders leave. Over time this will mean fewer and fewer school crossing patrols in Brent.
Local campaigner and council candidate Alison Hopkins said:
Dollis Hill Lane is one of the busiest roads in the area, with heavy lorries and speeding cars. It’s potentially lethal. Children at our Lady of Grace Junior School need their crossing patrol. If elected as Dollis Hill’s new councillor I will be in a strong position to fight to keep it.
Published and promoted by R Wharton 19 Roe Lane London NW9 9BH on behalf of A Hopkins (Liberal Democrats) 9 Humber Road London NW2 6EH. Printed (hosted) by Automattic, Inc. 60 29th Street #343 San Francisco, CA 94110-4929 United States of America