Leader of Harlow Conservatives lambasts Labour over “lack of action” over travellers

THE LEADER of the Harlow Conservatives has written a letter to YH over Harlow Labour’s action on travellers since the town wide injunction lapsed.

Sir,

In July, I wrote to your newspaper following the decision of Harlow’s Labour Council not to attempt to try and renew the injunction Harlow had been granted to stop unauthorised encampments blighting our town. 

“At the time, I expressed my deep concern that our town no longer had an injunction given the large amount of anti-social behaviour and trouble that our town had faced in 2015. 

Residents will not be surprised, therefore, to see dozens of caravans parked on our green space opposite the town centre. 

“Since then, the Leader of Harlow Council has done little to address this problem; has offered only warm words, but little action. Today, he said that “Harlow Council tried to extend the injunction” but the fact of the matter is, our town has no injunction against these encampments because our Labour Council withdrew the application. 

Our residents deserve answers. So I would ask the Leader of the Council again:

Why was there no consultation before the Labour Council made this decision?Is it because some Labour Party activists are well known to be sceptical about action against unauthorised encampments and have previously made statements of support for those trespassing?

Why did the Labour Council not look at every possible scenario in advance of the injunction’s expiry and discuss this at full council, in advance of the court case?

Why did the Labour Council not consult with the MP, Police and Crime Commissioner or leader of the Conservative Group on Harlow Council before making this decision?

Why did the Council not bring this matter to a Full Council meeting before making these fundamental policy decisions that could have a negative impact on the wellbeing of our town?

Why did the Leader of Harlow Council, in response to a question from a Harlow resident in February, say that the Council was fully armed and would be successful in their bid for a renewed injunction? 

It is time that the leader of the council stops the warm words and acted to ensure that these encampments can no longer pitch up in our town.

Andrew Johnson

Leader of Harlow Conservatives

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