Leeds GATE

Working to improve the quality of life for Gypsies and Travellers

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Leeds GATE Blog

Too much fun in the office?!

Helen Jones's picture
By Helen Jones |  February 19, 2016 |

Work is supposed to be hard isn’t it? 

But is GATE work?  Is it a building with people all doing work in it? 

As I began thinking about this blog, prompted by the picture ‘Little Jim, Ellie and Jukels (dogs)’, the scene below, ‘Jimmy, Jerry, Thomas and Billy’, happened in front of me.  I asked the boys what happens at GATE and they said its “where Gypsies and Travellers get united”!  

Next article: "Whose history? Communities telling their own stories of activism"

Housing and planning bill – This really does matter

Ben Chastney's picture
By Ben Chastney |  February 15, 2016 |

Buried amongst many other parts of the news, even for those who keep a relatively close eye on politics, is the importance of the Housing and Planning Bill currently working through Parliament.  Of particular concern is the proposed removal of obligations on Local Authorities to undertake specific Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Needs Assessments.  Whilst on the surface a dry and technical point, the potential implications of this Bill for Gypsy and Travellers really must be spelt out.

We raise this issue now as in the coming weeks a further opportunity to make important amendments arises, as the Bill is discussed in the Lords.  Unfortunately in previous discussions in the Commons various proposed changes were largely rejected, overlooked or watered down.  Sadly because there are so many other legitimate concerns with this bill, whether over social housing, rent rules or wider planning, serious flaws relating to Gypsies and Travellers are easily overlooked. 

So what is the problem with removing GTNAAs? 

 

 

Next article: "Screenings and Immunisations – Trust and communication in the health service"

Screenings and Immunisations – Trust and communication in the health service

Ben Chastney's picture
By Ben Chastney |  February 5, 2016 |

A recent meeting about screenings and immunisations got me thinking about the interaction of the health service with vulnerable people and groups.  Broadly speaking this was a useful event for all, both for those with a medical or community interest.  It does seem that we as a country are relatively strong in the uptake and coverage of immunisations against countless diseases and effective screening against various conditions.  There are exceptions however.

 

Notably, the gaps in take-up are most often those with certain characteristics, such as mental health difficulties, and come from vulnerable or isolated groups.  Other examples include asylum seekers, sex workers, children in local authority care and prisoners.  Despite the great variation amongst these people, the common theme is about engagement with the health service or rather the obstacles to this.  Put simply, those with less positive interaction with surgeries, health visitors, hospitals etc. are less likely to know about, understand, trust or in practice get access to immunisations or screenings. 

Next article: "Gypsies, Travellers, Police and Councils to talk Unauthorised Encampment."

Molly’s adventures with Travellers - Christmas Special 2

Ben Chastney's picture
By Ben Chastney |  December 18, 2015 |

Santa’s visit from the Ghost of Christmas Past. And friends.

It’s a week before Christmas and Santa is awoken in the middle of the night.

 Christmas 2
ILLUSTRATED BY PETER HUDSPITH

“Wooooooooooo”

Previous article: "Flooding: looking backwards and forwards"

Next article: "Fury over Fury: Thoughts on ‘the Gypsy King’"

Molly’s adventures with Travellers

Ben Chastney's picture
By Ben Chastney |  November 9, 2015 |

I have recently been writing a set of short stories, cartoon strip like in nature, which hopefully illustrate some injustices our members sadly often face.  It seems worth explaining the rationale behind it all.

Previous article: "Molly’s adventures with Travellers – Episode 1: A camp arrives"

Next article: "Boxer Jimmy is sharing his skills on site"

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