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Will MP’s comments really help?
Will the latest comments by Bradford West MP George Galloway, that the city is being “engulfed by a national emergency”, really help Bradford?
On the day when a £7.7million initiative was launched to try to get some of our unemployed back into work, regional headlines in other news media were instead dominated by his latest remarks.
No-one is pretending that everything in the garden is rosy in the city, and this newspaper is certainly no apologist for Bradford Council, but we do believe in giving credit where it’s due.
Bradford has many problems. It does have serious poverty issues, along with many other difficulties, both economic and social, some specific to this area, others part of the worldwide recession. But it is far from alone in this regard and the danger is that outsiders like the BBC and other national media will give undue prominence to Mr Galloway’s words and fuel the perception that too many already have that Bradford is not a place to invest in.
Mr Galloway tells us that, as a single MP, his job is to speak up and demand but he refuses to engage in meaningful discussions with those, such as the Council leadership, who can make things happen and bring about change.
It is a real shame that on a day of positive and constructive news for Bradford, with something actually being done to tackle the issues Mr Galloway is talking about, it was his negative comments that grabbed the regional headlines.
Bradfordians could, perhaps, be forgiven for thinking that with friends like Mr Galloway...