Voices from the Left: 5 blogs from the left to read this week

An overview of progressive news

1. The minister’s office played a role in the fast-track deals for financial support from Gove and the Conservative Party –Signing time

Byline Times Reports that Michael Gove’s office referred a company to the expedited “VIP” COVID contracting program, owned by a man who personally donated to Gove and agreed to help his 2016 Conservative leadership campaign.

Following a campaign by the Good Law Project, the government released the 47 companies that won COVID-related contracts through the VIP fast-track system. The process expedited the process of purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) during the early stages of the pandemic, prompting ministers, officials and MPs to recommend potential suppliers.

Byline Times reports documents which show Meller Designs was referred to the program by the Office of the Government’s Commercial Director and the Office of the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster – a position Gove held from July 2019 to September 2021.

Meller Designs co-owner David Meller has donated nearly £ 60,000 to Tory politicians and the Central Party since 2009, including £ 3,250 to Gove’s unsuccessful leadership campaign in 2016.

2. The wage theft epidemic Magazine Tribune

In 2019, salary theft in Britain was worth around £ 35 billion. But unlike other forms of theft, it is hardly ever prosecuted – because it is a crime committed by bosses against workers. Matthew Cole writes for Tribune Magazine about how salary theft continues to be a pervasive problem in Britain today.

Cole written on how formal wage theft can occur through a variety of methods, from violation of the minimum wage to unpaid breaks and deductions for equipment costs. In 2019, more than five million workers worked a total of two billion unpaid hours, representing £ 32.7 billion in free labor per year. If we add the non-payment of vacation rights and the failure to meet the minimum wage, the amount owed to workers rises to 35.3 billion pounds.

3. Three quarters of the British public fear that the privatization of the NHS will damage care –open democracy

OpenDemocracy Reports that three quarters of the British public fear that the privatization of the NHS will damage care. An exclusive poll commissioned by openDemocracy found that three-quarters of those polled specifically fear that an increase in the use of private companies by the NHS will lead to shortening (76%), the use of less qualified staff (74% ). , and increasingly disjointed or fragmented health systems (77%).

It comes as the government tries to pass its new health and care bill, which has been dubbed an NHS takeover bill. The bill opens the door for private companies to serve on the 42 local health boards – the integrated care boards – which make crucial decisions about NHS budgets and services.

4. Government fails to make green transition affordable, says Miliband –Work List

Ed Miliband accused the government for failing to make a green transition “affordable for families affected by a cost of living crisis” in response to Boris Johnson’s speech at the Confederation of British Industry’s annual conference.

Commenting on the Prime Minister’s rather chaotic and bizarre address to the CBI this morning, the shadow Labor Secretary for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy warned that the government was “betraying British automakers and workers”.

He said: “Rather than supporting the auto industry in the global race for green technologies, ministers have stepped back and left manufacturers, workers and the public alone, without taking the necessary steps to make change affordable for families. hit by a cost of living crisis.

5. UK Inhumane Benefits System Gives People PTSD –Novara Media

Jay watts written for Novara Media on how cuts to the UK welfare system have had a devastating impact on the mental health of some of society’s most vulnerable and how psychological and social insecurity are linked.

Watts quotes Lynne Friedli and Robert Stearn who showed in a landmark article that the DWP now demands an upbeat and dynamic mindset where all psychological traits deemed unsuitable for the market, such as hopelessness, must be removed; the cost of not doing so is a punishment with sanctions.

As a result, “many claimants suffer from welfare-induced PTSD; oscillating between anxious self-states trying to meet government demands, hypervigilance to be judged deficient or fraudulent, and depressive meltdowns as the moral accusation the system entails begins to be felt personally.

Basit Mahmood is Editor-in-Chief of Left Foot Forward

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