Harlow Labour leader slams MP Robert Halfon over traveller claims

General / Mon 26th Jun 2023 at 08:40am

THE LEADER of Harlow Labour has alleged that the Harlow MP Robert Halfon has used the arrival of travellers in the town park to “promote his disingenuous and misleading nonsense”.

Councillor Chris Vince said: “Yet again Harlow’s MP is using the arrival of travellers in our town to promote his disingenuous and misleading nonsense.

“He implies that he ‘worked hard’ to bring about the injunction held by Harlow Council which prevented traveller encampments for a number of years. The truth is that it was the Labour administration that sought and achieved the granting of that injunction.

“Halfon then blames the Labour administration for failing to renew the injunction when it expired. He knows full well that there was compelling legal advice that a renewal would not be granted by the courts. Labour chose not to waste taxpayers money pursuing a hopeless case. Had they spent the money and still not got the renewal he’d be complaining about them ignoring the legal advice.
If it’s so easy to get an injunction why has the current Conservative administration not done so? They’ve had two years!

Harlow Labour group fully support the work of the Community Safety Team and the Police in engaging with the travellers to seek a swift resolution to the situation but we will not stay silent and tolerate blatant lies from an elected representative who should know better.

It should come as no surprise that Halfon is playing shameful games using the disgraced methods of Trump & Johnson, he notably failed to turn up and vote to condemn Johnson for his lies to Parliament, the Queen and the British people.

Travellers deserve access to clean and safe sites to use when passing through the area. The failure to provide these in adequate numbers is the cause of the current situation.

In his comments Halfon makes claims about increased police numbers in Essex whilst failing to mention it was the Conservative Government in which he serves that decimated their numbers in the first place. They also cut, and have failed to recover, police staff numbers with many of these new officers doing non police roles.

“If he has nothing truthful or decent to say it’s time he left the stage. Britain needs a general election to rid the country of this chaotic, vicious and shameful government where the promised ‘integrity, professionalism and accountability’ is nothing but a pipe dream!”

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16 Comments for Harlow Labour leader slams MP Robert Halfon over traveller claims:

2023-06-26 09:04:56

Remember several years ago when Labour Councillors in Harlow held up banners stating "Travellers Welcome" tells you all you need to know on their position.

Kim Oconnor
2023-06-26 09:26:25

If sites are not provided, where are they going to go. Exactly this.. More and more of us are living like this, not just travellers. Sites need to be provided.

James Leppard
2023-06-26 09:40:00

Pitching up in a public council owned park and churning up the grass is a trespass and a criminal act under the 2022 Act. Harlow Labour may well have announced that "Travellers Welcome". This administration prefers to defend the interests of Harlow residents who pay Council Tax to enjoy such amenities as our Town Park.

Nicholas Taylor
2023-06-26 09:48:06

No fan of Labour of Course but in this instance Cllr Vince is quite right with his comments about our MP. It is clear that whether in Westminster or in Harlow the Conservative Party time and time again try to bend the truth or indeed lie. They also continue to ignore questions of them, such as the one put at the end of the Councillors fourth paragraph.

David Forman
2023-06-26 10:59:34

For a pleasant change I have to congratulate Cllr Chris Vince on this letter. He makes a logical and reasoned argument worthy of his position.

Kim Oconnor
2023-06-26 11:00:36

James Leppard, why don't you just answer the questions, and provide sites for theses Traveler's.

Guy Flegman
2023-06-26 11:05:03

More useless political gesturing. I don’t care about political point scoring, I just want issues dealt with. Imagine how good things could be if these politicians put as much effort into the real issues as they do into political posturing. Remember our taxes pay for this sort of nonsense

David Forman
2023-06-26 11:10:44

Correction: Labour councillors stated by Pedro and alluded to by Cllr James Leppard were not holding up banners saying "Travellers Welcome Here". The poster being held up by the Labour councillor and myself was produced by the Association of Chief Police Officers financed website True Vision. It should be noted that the councillor and myself at the time were accredited Essex Police Hate Crime Ambassadors who received their certificate from the then Chief Superintendent Sean O'Callaghan in a ceremony at Harlow Council's Civic Centre. See the poster held up here: https://www.report-it.org.uk/files/tv_gypsy_roma_and_traveller_1.pdf

David Forman
2023-06-26 11:15:53

In fact this matter was discussed in the council chamber of Harlow Council as the result of a Labour administration motion condemning the deplorable intimidation directed at the Labour councillor in question by anti-Traveller protesters. The poster I mentioned earluer was held up in the council chamber by the councillor in question. The poster I refer to is available here: https://www.report-it.org.uk/files/tv_gypsy_roma_and_traveller_1.pdf

David Forman
2023-06-26 11:42:53

Further libellous statements will be dealt with by legal action. And why is the Editor breaking his own rules by allowing comments, essentially anonymous, from people only identifying themselves by their first name.

Luke Burton
2023-06-26 13:16:54

Another slamming from Cllr Vince!

Lanie Shears
2023-06-26 18:26:56

I have to agree with David Forman. He is correct in what he is saying here. I was at that council meeting and was horrified at the online intimidation the councillor had directed at them.

James Leppard
2023-06-26 21:49:53

Why were so many people irate with the Councillor in question. I abhor an form of intimidation, but what had he or she done to provoke such a reaction? I have no idea of the background to this incident. Whatever, the reasons, it is hardly relevant to the present unlawful encampment.

2023-06-26 23:35:02

I wonder if councillor Vince is just being silly? In the first part he levies against Halfon “promote his disingenuous and misleading nonsense”. only to follow it further down with "It should come as no surprise that Halfon is playing shameful games using the disgraced methods of Trump & Johnson, he notably failed to turn up and vote to condemn Johnson for his lies to Parliament, the Queen and the British people." Surely he can see the irony of this given the subject was about the illegal travellers in the town park? Now, Travellers who don't travel are simply people in mobile homes illegally camped out. They can be moved on quite easily and there is no need for hostillity at all to anyone.

Mr Neil Rickards
2023-06-27 07:13:34

I gather the Oconnor's are Irish or traveller's of some description with a house in Irland

Kim Oconnor
2023-06-27 08:15:25

So, Mr Richards, if you have an Irish name that makes you a traveller.. I have an Irish name by marriage.. Infact my mums name was Richard. 😂 😂

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