Archives for October 27th, 2005

THE POLITICS OF COMMUNITY

Abstracts, PublicNet: 27 October, 2005

Speaking to the North West Improvement Network in Manchester David Miliband, Minister of Communities and Local Government, set out the Government’s view of ‘community’. Polls indicate that confidence about the future of communities is not high and many people have identified a growing sense of powerlessness in the face of rapid change. The belief that individuals can act with others to achieve societal change is not strong.’People say they want to live in a place where you can trust others, and feel a sense of pride and belonging. But these are things that consumers cannot buy and for which MPs cannot legislate. They exist in a space between the state and the individual – a space often called civic society, or community. It is a space defined by shared values, interests, activities, institutions and spaces. And the politics of community is about how we nurture those things we share. Success will be measured in tangible differences – less crime, better health, and better education. But there are also the intangible benefits – higher aspirations, clearer expectations of how to behave, trust in other citizens and institutions, and a sense of belonging and ownership, with citizens feeling pride in their neighbourhood, and a sense that local services – the police, schools, childcare, GPs – are run by us rather than them.’

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STUDY FINDS LOW INCOME STUDENTS ARE COMPELLED TO TAKE NON-GRADUATE JOBS

Headlines, PublicNet: 27 October, 2005

Students from low-income families are more likely to take jobs that do not require a degree because of the financial pressures they face when they leave university, according to a report today. The research by the University of Glasgow finds that students from less well off backgrounds pay more for higher education because they incur heavier debts and receive less help with repayments after they graduate.Today’s report, produced for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, is the last in a series charting the progress through higher education of young people from disadvantaged areas of western Scotland. The researchers found that students without significant financial support from families often felt compelled to take the first job that came along. That in turn made it harder for them to begin graduate careers or to gain the skills that would help them move to better paid jobs where they would be more able to pay off their debts.

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GOVERNMENT SET TO FREEZE COUNCILS’ RECYCLING TARGETS

Headlines, PublicNet: 27 October, 2005

The Government is thinking of freezing the recycling and composting targets that local authorities have to meet in 2007-08 at their current levels but a final decision will not be made until the completion of a consultation exercise that has just been launched.Targets, designed to cut the levels of waste being sent to landfill sites, were first set in 2000 and the current aims are due to run until the end of March next year. They are designed to deliver the Government’s overall aim that at least a quarter of household waste should be recycled or composted by this year.

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